The legend of the Outlaw is well established in triathlon folklore, and then the Outlaw Half burst onto the scene for 2013 selling out in just a few days and last year in just one day!
The 2015 Outlaw Half is all set for 31st May. It features the same high quality organisation as the Outlaw, but covers half the distance.
Have you got what it takes to outwit the Sheriff to complete a 1.2 mile swim, 56 mile bike ride and a 13.1 mile run in less than eight and a half hours?
The start, the swim, much of the run and the finish are all conveniently located together, making excellent spectator viewing at the National Water Sports Centre in Nottingham.
The swim takes place in the regatta lake. A single out and back course makes it easy to navigate and then with a super-quick escape, you are straight out on your bike. The roads around Nottinghamshire offer great surfaces for fast riding and only the odd short climb to challenge you. The bike course will be fast, but don't underestimate it - especially if it's a windy day!
On returning to the National Water Sports Centre, the multi-lap course around the lake and river path offers a feed station every mile or so and is lined with supporters willing you all the way to the finish line.
There is plenty of on-site camping as well as excellent city centre hotels just two to three miles down the road. There are thousands of car parking spaces available; making this is the perfect athlete and spectator experience.
Raced the Outlaw Half, 70.3 at Nottingham this year after a number of recommendations. Everything about the race did not disappoint, a great memorable weekend.
Registration and regular briefings take place the day before at the race venue which is the national watersports centre. Plenty parking available for a one off fee of a fiver for all weekend. Registration was straight forward enough but be warned. The race pack emailed out beforehand states photo ID required at registration but that BTF race licence is also an acceptable form of ID. It was a good job I had additional photo ID on me because they wouldn't accept my licence (with photo). No problem but could have been.
We arrived at the venue around 5am on the morning of the race. Usual script, straight through to transition with bike, wearing helmet with number. Ran into a few people I knew which always settles the nerves.
Swim waves are arranged by age group rather than ability or a predicted swim time so it's a bit of a scramble at the beginning with slower swimmers being passed. Again, no real problems, I was only hit in the back of the head once.
The bike route is predominantly flat (ish), although there was one small climb which the garmin recorded at 17% at one point, it caught a few riders out. It was a hot morning on the day of the race so I did reign things in a bit to bring the HR down in anticipation of a hot run. I'm glad I did.
The run is flat, out beyond the lake and a couple of loops around the lake, mileage was spot on. Support is good all around the route and the several feed stations are very well stocked with everything you need, gels, cola, isotonic drink, water, wet sponges (God send) and the 'slappers' with the sun cream (another God send). It was so hot on race day, record breaking temperatures according to the organisers. The last couple of miles I was melting and it was right up there with one of the hardest runs I've done, I don't do well in heat and was a good 20min over predicted finish time, which on reflection I'm happy with.
Well organised fast 70.3, highly recommended.
Posted on 28.05.18
I had high expectations of this race as people rave about it. I have to say I didn't love it. Maybe a personal thing but for me, I didn't like racing on roads open to traffic (where I am used to racing on closed roads in Ironman events), and the road surface for the entire 91km (yes, it's long) was absolutely atrocious. I felt like I was off-roading. The last few kms coming back into transition were actually dangerous. Rough, potholed and speed bumps to add insult to injury.
The swim was long and the run was congested on the first loop - it takes in a very narrow towpath and it's an out and back loop - which, when you have 1,500 athletes on the course, is not pleasant and makes overtaking very challenging.
To summarise, I wouldn'tdo it again. I can't really fault the organisation but my personal opinion of the course itself wasn't a particularly positive one.
Posted on 28.05.18
OSB, Outlaw events have built up a great brand over the years of fantastically well organised events at a reasonable price point for experienced and novice triathletes looking to 'go long' for the first time. Two years ago I entered this event with that same mind set and experienced first hand what draws people to the bigger events yera in year out. I loved it. It was hard and I took a conservative approach hoping to get round. I achieved that with a non to shappy 5:32. Two years later I came back with the goal to physically challenge myself to progress. The race organisers were once again, superbly organised. From pre race communications to registration and briefing you were left feeling you had a clear understanding of all the dynamics of a bigger race. Transition, exit, entry points, route course, aid stations, special needs. All of this leaves a participant fully able to concentrate on what they have been training many months for. In short they make it easy and simple and take the stress away. My personal race was a mixture of personal rookie mistakes meaning a much slower swim than the last time followed by a storming bike PB and rub PB on a very warm day. The aid stations were superbly run with everything you needed including spones and cold water to cool the body temperatures. This organisation left me fueled and equipped to finish with a PB overall of over 7 mins. As usual you were greeted with a great medal a super cool t shirt a decent meal and .... the best part a good few Erdingers! I was buzzing for days ...The course especially the run around the boating lake does not excite everyone. For me I liked the mental challenge!
Overall this race should be must on any British Trathlete. It's legendary and does not dissapoint in any aspect.
Posted on 25.05.18
I've done a number of mid & long distance events over the last few years but for some reason (probably logistics), I'd never got myself to Holme Pierrepoint. Wasn't sure what to expect - is it like the Ironman experience? Is it more "friendly" like local mid distance race? Delightfully, its somewhere between the 2 - you get the local feel, but with the size and splendour of a great location. Deep water start, great food, good aftercare, what's not to like :-)
Posted on 23.05.18
This was my first 70.3 & it was amazing (& tough). Registration was easy, race briefing was detailed but entertaining, rules were clear. Transition was well laid out, support was great from staff & supporters and the volunteers were amazing, motivational & friendly. Nice touch having your name printed on your number! Medal is fantastic. T-shirts are a little snug & there are a few sections of roads that need a bit of TLC (like pretty much everywhere in the UK at the moment) but the organisers are aware of this. Overall I would thoroughly recommend it!!!
Posted on 22.05.18
The Outlaw Half is extremely well organised. Plenty of information in advance so you know the plan on the day. Whilst being a large, professionally run event, the camaraderie and support from the organisers, marshalls and volunteers has the feel of a friendly local event. Always a slick running event. With a major cycle incident this year causing a road closure and re-routing of the course, they were efficient and got everyone back on course as quickly as possible.
Swimming in Holme Pierrepoint is a great single loop of the lake. Not deep, this is deal for nervous swimmers and newbie triathletes. The bike course has only one small hill, taking you through some rolling countryside. The run out along the tow path is a pleasure, with plenty of high-fiving with competitors coming the other way.
Love this one! Highly recommend it for triathletes of any ability.
Posted on 22.05.18
This was my first ever middle distance race in 2014 and I've been back every year since. It just keeps getting better.
The organisation is slick with every detail covered, the location is tailor made, the bike course is fast, but not flat with enough twists and turns to make it interesting and the run along the river is lovely.
Keep doing what you're doing OSB. I'll be back for number 6 next year!
Posted on 21.05.18
So this was the second time for me, I did this event last year and loved it, so decided to come back for more. First things first, if you want to do this event you need to sign up the moment they release the tickets. It is no exaggeration that this events sells out in hours.
So why is it so popular? well the organisation, marshals and support are amazing, it has a small friendly family feel, yet when you realise how many people are taking part its anything but.
Is it cheap? no, is it worth the money? in my opinion, yes!
Registration & Communications
Simple easy, but book on the morning the event opens otherwise you wont get in. Plenty of communications in the run up to the race.
Ive stayed at the campsite over the road from the event for the last 2 years, location wise it couldn’t be better and considering 95% of the people staying there that weekend are taking part, it makes for a good atmosphere, plus it has showers and toilets for before and after the event.
Informal, relaxed, free Erdinger NA beer.
Second to none. Marshalls very friendly and helpful, route and transition were well signed but could do with a little more room racking bikes.
Swim is nice and easy, water has been warm and perfectly flat for the last 2 years.
Cycle is undulating at most with one hill worthy of a mention and on the whole the roads were better than i expected after our winter but the last 2k you better pray to the puncture gods
Run can get a little crowded as its an up and back along the river towpath before hitting the long rowing lake X 2
The finishing chute is brilliant, loads of support, cheers, name over the tannoy and the all important finishing ribbon.
Medals are always good.
Would i come back for a third time, you bet i am and i’ll be logging in teh morning the tickets get released.
Posted on 21.05.18
I had heard good things about the Outlaw Half and it didnt dissapoint. It still has that small local race feeling even though it is not small and pretty well known these days.
If you want a fast and well run half that doesnt break the bank then this race is for you. Very well marshalled and would be increadably difficult to get lost, loved the slightly informal race brief which made it personable and thought the helpers/marshals were friendly especialy the lady on the canal turnaround point :)
Great post race medal/t-shirt/food/massage & ice packs on the legs. Also a good touch putting the spare bottles out for anyone to help themselves.
Security for bike checkout was top notch, 3 pieces of ID to get your kit so knew it was all safe.
really enjoyed this race, maybe the sun helped :)
Posted on 21.05.18
Thank you for a fab event.
Posted on 21.05.18
As soon as entries opened... I enter d as this event sells out fast and pretty easy to understand why
registration was simple... briefing fun and informative
The course itself is very well laid out but the last 2 miles aren’t of the greatest because of the surface.. potential for punctures that far along on the bike if your not careful
the aid stations and marshalls were fantastic... especially the sun cream slappers ... prevented lots of people from burning ... that was a nice touch !
hope tto be back again
Posted on 21.05.18
THe Outlaw Half is one for all to do at least once, and if you do it the chances are you will be back to do it again!
Fantastc friendly event, very well organisaed and marshalled. Excellent timing, each wave start bang on time. Easy to navigate swim, water was a bit brown though. Easy to navigate bike, fairly fast with only one testing hill at 20 miles just befor the first feed station. Very well stocked and marshalled feedstaions on the bike with Outlaw Half branded drink bottles a great touch! Last 2 miles very dodgy surface but every one is made aware in the briefling although some still insist on riding too fast for the conditions.
Run along the river and around the rowing lake two laps and a great shute finish in front of a grandstand and you are an outlaw!
Food good and teh Erdinger very refreshing.
Overall an excellent event and one I certainly recommend (having completed in twice now) the only minor criticism and it is a big one at the time is the lack of toilet paer in the toilets in transition at 0530!
One to add to your list but please register after me when it opens because I want to do it again!
Posted on 21.05.18
This was my first half and I will definitely be back! I don’t have any negative comments, the courses were well marked and marshalled, the marshalls were all amazing, the support at the venue is second to non. Really well organised and lots of fun. The medal is brilliant, the only disappointment was the finishers t-shirt which are child sized! I ordered a medium ( same size I always order) and I can’t even get it over my head. I tried to change it but was told I couldn’t as I had opened it- it’s a shame I won’t be able to wear it
Posted on 21.05.18
My first time doing the half, the atmosphere is awesome the support from everyone is second to none, will be back again next year
Posted on 21.05.18
Loved the Outlaw Half. A really great atmosphere, managing to maintain a personal, informal approach when it’s a pretty big event. Very well organised. Thank you
Posted on 20.05.18
First time doing Outlaw Half for me and I'll definitely be back. Seamlessly well organised from registration right through to kit collection from transition. Lovely fast route, and excellent aid station stocking and variety (it helps that I love High5 stuff!). Excellent medal and finisher t-shirt as well.
My only gripe is the final couple of miles of the bike route. Potholed, loose gravel and speedbumps. Impossible to ride over quickly and really quite dangerous, especially on race tyres!
Posted on 20.05.18
This has become a staple on my race calendar, really good race, well organised and very well marshalled, would definitely recommend.
The only area of caution to first timers is to get there early as the car parking car take a while if you don't.
The main area of improvement I would like to see is around the bag storage, it did take me and others at the same time a while to find our bags today in amongst the mass of others. A bag drop organised by number would be a great help.
Posted on 20.05.18
Being my first ever half iron distance event I was somewhat nervous, could i make it? will i be last? surely i'm not good enough to be here. I needenlt have worried, this event is for all, from pros' to weekend warriors to the "what the hell, i'll give it a goers".
From the outset the instructiuons and details avaialble before the race were comprehemsive and clear. Accomodation in the form of camping next to the event was beneficial (can be noisy, so bring earplugs).
The pre-race breifing was both informal and good natured in humour, any last minutre nerves were certainly easing.
Straight into the event:
- the swim is great, well laid out, not too cold and plenty big enough to find some clear water.
- The bike course is good, not completely flat but cetaintly no alpine monster. It takes in a good amount of countryside and varies the scenery pretty well and the support on the bike course is brilliant. One word of warning is some of the roads have potholes, the last section in particular is like riding through a mine field so be careful for punctures.
- The run is pancake flat, well supported and and the feed stations are plentyfull.
and finally the finish chute is awesome, such a good cheer and lets you soak up the feeling for those last 20 metres.
All in all I would highly reccomend the event, great organisation & support.
Posted on 30.12.17
What an amazing day. For one, the sun came out. It had been raining solidly all day yesterday so I was fully expecting to get drenched during the race. It couldn’t have been better. No wind and conditions were dry. That was a relief as I don’t think the bike section would have been much fun in the rain.
I got to the National Water Sports centre at Holme Pierrepont in Nottingham around 5am and made my way to the transition area with my bike and all my gear (far too much gear as it turned out. Not sure an extra pair of trainers; just in case, was really necessary). I faffed about for an eternity before putting my wetsuit on and making my way to the swim start. I was in Wave 2 at 6.30am, so we lined up around 6.20 on the rowing pontoon trying to avoid stepping in goose poo. I dangled my legs in for a few minutes before making the plunge. It actually wasn’t that cold, I guess the lake swim on Monday helped prepare me for it.
We all were treading water waiting for the starting klaxon. I was fully expecting it to be a mad scrum, but when the starter set us off I had clear water in front of me. It’s a straight out and back swim up the rowing lake, so it wasn’t difficult to sight the buoys. I got in to a good rhythm and apart from swallowing a few grim gulps of the lake water it went really well. Before I knew it I was on the home straight and heading up the ramp to transition.
The bike leg started off with a lap around the lake before heading out on to the roads. It was a quick course. There weren’t many hilly sections, so it was down on the tri bars for most of the time. I got overtaken by a few of the rapid aero guys, but I also overtook my fair share of people too. There were a few potholes down some of the lanes but apart from that it was a course designed for time triallers. I felt pretty good throughout, making sure I was keeping fuelled up. My trusty superfood cake was less and less appealing with every bite. I was carrying it in my cycling vest pocket so it was rapidly turning in to brown mush. Taking on bananas at every feed station was far more appealing. By the time I got back to transition I felt confident I’d taken on enough food to keep me going on the run.
Transition went smoothly, and I was off on the run. With my coaches advice ringing in my ears I made sure I took it easy for the first two miles. My main objective was to be able to run properly off the bike. I’d struggled with this in the past so I was trying as hard as I could to avoid the dreaded cramp. I felt a twinge at 3 miles, but it soon wore off. The plan seemed to be working. I also continued my banana strategy by taking on one at every feed station. I must have had at least twelve in total during the course of the run. I don’t know if you can overdose on potassium but I must have come close.
My family was there to watch the run. It was so good to hear their support. Knowing they were there watching was a huge boost and spurred me on. They’ve been on this journey with me, especially my fiancé so having them there was perfect. When I finally got to the finishing area, my two eldest daughters were there to run over the line with me. It was an amazing feeling to have them there with me.
I have to say that the race organisation was first class. Everything was so well thought through and the support around the course was fantastic. I can understand why people keep going back.
I finished in 5 hours and 20 minutes, a huge personal best for me. I’d finally managed to run the way I wanted to, so I was delighted to get a result I was finally happy with. I also managed to get another result I wasn’t expecting. I’d put the race number transfers on my arms in the morning, the ones you have to wet to get them to stick. Not expecting the weather to be any good I didn’t bother with any sun block, but by the time I got on to the run the sun was beating down. I’ve now got my race number 702 outlined on my skin by sunburn. Proper numpty tan.
Posted on 17.07.17
I chose this race as my first middle distance as it is famously flat and friedly. My aim was to simply get around within all of the cut offs.
Everything from the email communication and race briefing prior to the race, to the organisation on the day, the volunteers and the course were second to none.
I can't promote this race enough!
Posted on 11.06.17
This was my second crack at this race and it didn't disappoint again.
The weather didn't look great in the week leading up to it but the weather gods smiled down on us for race day, it was calm, sunny and dry. Practically perfect so a lovely start.
The race briefing is approx. 45 mins on the Saturday and entertaining. If you don't go, you'll miss out on some tips so make sure you do if you enter next year.
The swim is divided into 4 pens with faster swimmers on the left. I chose the first pen and it was pretty cold but ok. The pens really work well and I didn't experience any jostling in the water so a relatively painless swim up one side of the lake across and back down. I exited the water at 34:52 so a 1:20 PB on last time. Upon exiting the water, the marshalls unzip your wetsuit for you which I was very grateful for since I fell out of the water as my feet were like ice blocks!
Easy T1 especially since I was granted an end slot so simple to locate my bike. Straight on with it and fuelled almost immediately with some salted caramel brownie. The bike course is mostly flat, I think less than 500m climbing with only 1 short climb and it's not really that steep. The northern loop is brilliant and roads are mostly smooth. The southern loop is not as good, the scenery is lovely but some of the roads are terrible. Not much that the organisers can do about it but just one for people to remember. Got another PB on the bike by about 8 minutes.
I was hoping for a big PB but my legs were cramping as soon as I got on to the run. I made sure I had some crisps at all the aid stations but it wasn't too much help. I'd lost a bottle of SOS on the bike so was stuck with high 5. The run course is only 2 laps of the lake and an out and back section. It's great for support and plenty of aid stations and very flat! The run ended up a little longer than the last time but still ended up with a 9 min PB overall so got to be happy with that after a year not racing. I now need to sort out my salt intake so I'll be visiting Loughborough Uni for testing and maybe back again to fix that run!
All in all, a great race. Enter if you can get in as places sell out very quickly!
Posted on 29.05.17
Well return to Holme pierrepoint didn't disappoint! After racing separately me 2015 other half 2016 the race was on 2017 ! The water was 14 degrees (allegedly) swim waves all set off right time the bike course was dry well marshalled and support along the route the run was amazing supporters were amazing and food at the end I could of stayed there all day !! Oh and I won battle of the sexes so of course have to race again next year!!
Posted on 27.05.17
A first time I have completed the Outlaw half and my first time doing the 70.3 distance.
Overall, this race lives up to it's reputation as one of the best in terms of organisation, support and overall race impact. The marshalls are super friendly and very helpful. I would certainly recommend this race to anyone.
For me the one area I thought needed improvement (and this is no fault of the organisers) is the quality of road surface on the bike leg. I was quite surprised at how bad it is. Fairness here to the organisers OSB as they did go out on the course and mark the road to warn racers, but there was just so much of it.
The weather turned out well, support was great and if you want to read about my race please do so here:
Posted on 23.05.17
Great race well run well organised I'm coming back hope the council sorts out the potholes !!!!
big thumbs up to whoever booked the weather
Posted on 22.05.17
This event offers something for everyone. For those looking for their first half iron distance event, it's a beginner friendly course, with a relaxed, friendly and supportive vibe. The swim is in the rowing lake, so very easy to sight. The bike is then through rolling scenic Nottingham countryside, with clear signage and plentiful marshalls. It would be pretty much impossible to get lost! Then the run is on pancake flat terrain, two laps of tow path out along the river Trent and a round the boat lake.
For those looking for a PB or an early season 70.3 in advance of other races it's a great course. The bike route is rolling enough to keep it interesting and a bit challenging. The run course with runners going in both directions on the tow path can be a bit of a squeeze, though a great opportunity to see friends out on the course too.
Organisation and marshalls are absolutely excellent; efficient and friendly, thank you!
Posted on 22.05.17
First time competing here.. awesome day out
Briefing and Registration was on Saturday and the brief was entertaining and informative !
really enjoyed this... transition was a little tight but plenty of Marshalls to hand to help out... big bags were banned and this helped a lot
great course and the marshalling and feed stations were excellent... plenty of variety and looked to be a plenty of supplies too
would love to do more OSB Events in the future... well organised and Greta great fun !
Posted on 21.05.17
Outlaw half is fun.
It hurts, it's the furthest I will compete, it's shattering but it's fun. The organisation and Marshals and food stops are brilliant and you have all the encouragement you need.
The course is well signposted and again brilliantly marshalled.
If you want to ache, give it a go.
Posted on 21.05.17
this was my first ever 70.3 distance and I'm very lucky that it's right on my doorstep
Posted on 21.05.17
Not as much of a looker as Holkham, swim is very straightforward, bike has a fairly tough hill and a nasty bit of potholed gravel at the finish. Run is awesome and well supported.
Posted on 10.01.17
Cracking organisation from start to finish.
I really wanted to enter this event and was gutted when i was not quick enough with my pre-sale link - after a few refreshes & some choice emo words, I was in!
Roll on to days leading up to the registration day, communications regarding the event were very good.
The registration process was smooth, and upon arrival i was registered, collected goodies (no bag... which i thought was a touch silly in lieu fo the important bits we were given!), and was into the next race briefing within 20mins - perfect!
The race morning checkin to transition was easy, and took far little time to do than expected.
As far as the rest of the day - it was perfect!
A couple of things regarding the bike course - there are some fairly hairy bits on the open roads - if the race could be fully closed, i would come back every year in perpetuity!
My supporters did say a few things to me which are of definite relevance - there needed to be more signage for spectators, and a map of the site in a central location (expo) would have been really handy.
Posted on 31.05.16
Second visit to this iconic race. Has the best reputation for clear and obvious reasons such as organisation, consideration of the competitors and the it safety, on course support and just a brilliant atmosphere.
Would definately recommend to anyone wanting to make the step up the half iron distance triathlon.
Posted on 31.05.16
This was my first attempt at 70.3 and i loved it that much i cannot wait to do another
I've competed in a number of OSB events before and my expectations of a world class event were high and OSB didnt disappoint
The event sold out in a matter of minutes so to cope with that amount of traffic at 9.00am always bodes well
The information leading up to the event was great with little coaching videos from Simon Ward there to assist if you needed them
As for the weekend, parking although plenty of it was alittle hit and miss, i was in one car park, the wife and kids in another, registration was very quick and easy, the expo as expected with lots on sale and the whole atmosphere prior to race day helped by being able to watch another race that was taking part
Race day, transition opened in plenty of time to cope with the 1200 people taking part, security as expected and annoucements as start time loomed very good, the race itself was great, bike really well signposted, road potholes marked out, feed stations easy to navigate, the run again well signposted, support fantastic and a feed station what seemed to be around every corner
Great event OSB i will be back next year for sure :)
Posted on 31.05.16
So... Outlaw half! This is my second experience of the world famous outlaw half and I have to say out of all the races I have done from ironman to 5km runs this is still cemented firmly as my favourite event! Yes at ironman events you get the bragging rights to say you're an ironman but you're paying double for that, here you pay half the price and get the same top event which is actually a lot more family friendly! I did this event last year when the weather was awful so I was praying for anything other than rain... After checking my weather every day for about 2 week before the event I got a good feeling that it was going to be dry, windy, but dry... Happy days! So the swim is basically a huge rectangle that actually looks impossible, because it's on a huge straight lake it looks like it's about 6 miles out and 6 miles back but believe it or not it's bang on the money my garmin clocked 1.23miles and it looks like I swam in a straightish line for the first time in my life, I can't even do that in the pool! Into transition, being in the first wave meant my bike was on rack 1 - simple, after jumping out of the water a quick glance to the watch to check I was still on for a pb I found my bike, ripped the wetsuit off like I was stripping at an office party and took off on the black dragon to catch the faster swimmers! The bike route is a mixture of dual carriageways (one of the lanes is closed off just for us which is great to bomb along) and country roads again perfect to fly along especially with the rolling hills. A windy bike which seemed to have a headwind round every corner but I'm from Scarborough I was brought up in the wind... This is how I like my bikes! The route itself is fairly flat there's a few hills to get you out of the saddle but on the whole it's a fast bike course. At the 55 mile point I decided to undo my shoes for some reason and pedal the last bit in with my feet on top of my shoes like the pros do... Don't ask me why... My feet were freezing and it felt like forever before I hit T2. Heading into T2 there was a huge crowd waiting and cheering everyone on which was a huge boost... I'm sure I heard a "go on gaz" in there somewhere! Bike back on the rack, helmet off , race check visor on, right shoe on (that doesn't feel right), left shoe on, right shoe off remove the gel I left in there and then back on with right shoe... Great transition
Posted on 30.05.16
Having completed the Outlaw in 2015, I was familiar with the set up for the Outlaw Half 2016. That said, if this had been my first trip to Home Pierrepoint and its wonderful Regatta Lake, user-friendly transition and efficient organisation, I would have felt in safe hands.
The most difficult part about the whole race was getting in. Selling out in a matter of minutes in August last year, the race landed on my birthday so it was a bit of a non-brainer for me. I filed the confirmation of registration and got on with my life. May was a long way off. Suddenly, however, race day loomed.
Communications were good; emails and Final Race Day instructions were regular, prompt and detailed. This year, though, there was a new £5 parking charge for the weekend which was an unwelcome change. However, the process of acquiring the parking pass was quite painless. Registration was easy, lots of smiley, helpful people – only slight downside: when you were given your race pack, free gels and crisps and parking pass, there was nowhere to put them. A bag might have been useful here as it was quite difficult juggling all the bits and not losing anything important. The Expo was full of tri gear, as to be expected, and lots of Outlaw kit to buy too. Always popular in my view – like Imelda Marcos and shoes, it’s impossible to have too much kit.
The race briefing was well delivered – jokes peppered the sometimes tedious, but essential safety information. It was very thorough and reassuring – if it was your first experience at this distance or at all, I think you would have left fully prepped, clutching a complimentary pint of alcohol free Erdinger which One Step Beyond so thoughtfully provided! If it wasn’t your first rodeo, you would have left equally well prepped and somewhat entertained by the double act of the two organisers (whose names escape me but who imparted a sense of calm and confidence that ALL WOULD BE WELL). They also handled the contentious issue of no Tri Boxes in transition well by providing a bag drop area – every angle had been considered.
Race day was cold. There was no getting away from it. Parking was well organised with lots of marshals on hand. Even at 5am. I tested the organisers’ preparedness by forgetting my race wrist band – not the best start – but that wasn’t a problem: they had spares. And setting up transition was smooth. There were lots of loos. There were smiles and lots of chatter. Nobody was too officious: we had been told transition closed as 6.20am – a few late comers were allowed in. Nobody wanted to spoil the day for any reason.
The swimmers went off in four waves. The water was warmer than the air so it was good to get in. The swim course was impossible to get wrong – straight up and down and a really good experience for beginners, and an excellent, fast course for those pushing for a PB.
Back into transition, having been helped out of the water, a kind marshal unzipped by wetsuit as I ran (ok, walked) past into T1.
And then onto the bike course; very well marshalled. Again, good for first timers and reassuring for the more experienced. There were a few right turns and these were handled really well. Lots of encouragement from the marshals – they could not do enough. I saw a few athletes with mechanicals but help was on hand. There were a couple of hills and some ropey surfaces but the organisers had spray painted the worst bits – the last few miles of speed humps and pretty uneven surface isn’t much fun, but by that time we were nearly back to T2 and onto the run.
Not the most interesting of runs – but helped along by fabulous support and wonderfully cheerful marshals. At one stop at the far end of the lake when energy is flagging, they were especially fun. I mentioned it was my birthday and got a rousing Happy Birthday chorus which was repeated the second time round as they recognised me: it’s easy to underestimate the importance of support. At the sharp end of the race with another 4 or 5 miles to go – a cheery smile can go a long way.
The finishing chute was fun – it’s tough going past on the first lap – but even sweeter when it’s your turn to become an Outlaw.
A long report – but lots to say about a great race: excellent organisation, fabulous marshals and an event to remember. Also – great medal.
Posted on 30.05.16
This was my first time at outlaw half and my second 70.3/middle distance race. Getting a place in the race was a nightmare, the first lot of places sold out in 60 seconds! However I managed to get a place in the resale. And I thought getting Glastonbury tickets was difficult!
I got to the venue on the Saturday, which the satnav found easy enough. However, if you come from the top of the lake direction, the road there is incredibly rough! So be careful! Try and come the other way, where the roads are fine and there's plenty of parking. Even if you do come the other way, there's lots of places to park.
Registration was a a doddle. Gave my race number, showed my race license, got my race number, chip, and some high5 goodies and that was done! I did regret not bringing a bag though as I had to hold onto everything and not drop any of it (paranoid about losing my race chip!). I paid for parking there aswell. All went smoothly as anything.
Race morning, I got to the venue for 0530 (my wave starting at 0630). I had been a little concerned that it would be bedlam, with that many athletes racking their bikes. However, when I got there (at that time), there was lots of parking, racked my bike no problem, set up my stuff then had the dreaded wait for the race to start!
They had to change the swim route slightly due to some algae moving about, but they sorted this no problem. Water quality was good, buoys set up well. Got through the swim without too much chaos and then into T1!
You run along nice smooth tarmac to get to T1, so no worries about damaging your feet etc. it's probably about 100m to get to it. Once out on the bike you do one lap of the lake then out into the countryside.
The bike course is relatively flat, there's no real climbs on it. However there are plenty of false flats! That's what adds to the ascent really. You are sharing the road with traffic on quite a few sections unfortunately, and there were a few hairy moments because of this, which was quite unpleasant. There are 2 aid stations, with toilets, and the volunteers there are brilliant. Water, electrolytes, gels and bananas.
My main problem with the bike course is the last mile. The roads become dirt tracks. Dirt tracks filled with pot holes. Fortunately as a mountain biker this wasn't too terrifying, but on a TT bike I was skidding and sliding all over the surface. There was also an almighty crack that sounded like my carbon wheels fracturing, however they seem to be in one piece as far as I can see! Nevertheless, it puts a bit of a downer on what is otherwise a class bike course.
The run is 2 laps. Part of it along the canal paths, part of it around the lake. If you want an interesting scenic run route, this is not the race for you! It's pleasant enough, pretty much pan flat, and hence, very, very fast. A boring run yes, but one that screams for you to PB!
Crowd support was ok. I've had a lot better support in races further north, and it doesn't quite have the same atmosphere as that of other metallic branded events. Nevertheless, it still has a good atmosphere.
To sum up:
1. A fast, flat course. You will want to PB the hell out of this.
2. Fantastic venue, with T1 and T2 at the same place.
3. The volunteers are absolutely awesome.
4. Fast bike course, typical british road quality, with some open/shared road racing.
5. An easy and fast run route.
Overall, I can say Outlaw Half was brilliant.
It was far better than another 70.3 based in Staffordshire last year!
I will definitely be back next year!
Fast, flat and a great finishers shirt and medal!
Posted on 30.05.16
So this sold out very quickly and I can see why! OSB are great with their communication and if you follow them on twitter or facebook they give out lots of useful information.
The race brief was a great laugh the organisers certainly know how to put you at ease, the volunteers at the aid stations were great, some of the most supportive I have ever seen, they would run with you to encourage and support you.
The swim very easy to navigate its out and back with enough buoys to site, nice and clear too, could easily see the feet in front of me and people either side of me.
The bike route is fast, some is on open roads so make sure your paying attention! Although most give plenty of room and are willing to wait some are not. You have right of way over most of the junctions just watch out at roundabouts. The route is good there’s one hill but nothing major, easy enough to spin up, there are a few rolling hills towards the end but again nothing too difficult. The roads towards the end of the route are pot-holed/speed bumps and are in a really bad condition so take it easy. Its quite exposed in places so if its windy your going to feel it, local cycling clubs cycled along me for a bit to encourage me when I was hurting!
The Run its very flat, a bit tight in places and not very inspiring but its flat! Here the volunteers come into their own the support they give is amazing, don't think there was one who didn't shout my name out. The finish line, running down the red carpet was special, the medal and tee awesome and the food was heavenly.
Overall it is a great race, well organised,the support is superb. Course is a great one if your after a PB just be careful on the bike. You won't regret signing up for this, I'll be back next year!
Posted on 30.05.16
This was my second 70.3 distance race and I was not disappointed. From the moment I signed up OSB events kept me updated so I knew exactly what to expect on the day. The event itself was so well organised! Everyone involved from the organisers to the volunteers were some of the nicest people I have ever met and so so supportive. The course is fab, although a word of caution, the road surfaces on lots of sections on the bike are dreadful and I suspect some althletes, who are more cautious than my maverick self, lost time due to this. Also as its not a completely closed road event you need to be mindful of traffic - some local drivers clearly don't like cyclists!! Oh and I got stuck behind two tractors! The run route is perfect, flat and with tonnes and tonnes of support, there were even volunteers who ran with you if you began to struggle. This is a great race and I would recommend it to elites as well as newbies :D
Posted on 30.05.16
I absolutely loved this race.
The atmosphere is incredible there is a real electricity in the air. The race brief was thorough and methodical and the free Erdinger certainly helped! The race expo was amazing I could have have spent a fortune in my endorphin fueled state.
The swim was really nice. The out and back route was easy to sight and was really fast.
The bike was really fast. Only a couple of hills allowed me to really get some good pace. The winds a bit in your face at times but only for short periods because of the figure of 8 route.
The run is flat and fast.
Throughout the marshals were exceptional always offering you that extra boost as you go past. Really organized aid stationsstations, jaffacakes were a real treat!
Safe to say I will be back next year for sure!
Posted on 30.05.16
really enjoyed the race, well organised, all support staff were very friendly and helpful, would recommend it!
I'll be back next year!
Posted on 30.05.16
Great race, but spoilt by the weather, freezing lake and pouring rain.
Swim: very well signed with frequent buoys.
Bike: relatively flat, not great surface
Run: fast, flat, soft surface, too narrow at times.
Posted on 11.06.15
The UK didn't need a fast, flat & high - quality 70.3 race for 2015 because Outlaw Half is just that. Excellent organisation, good course and PB potential for sure.
Swim is easy to navigate (straight lines and two turns) and transition is fine. Could have and change tent so kit doesn't get wet in the rain like this year. The bike is fast and effectively marshaled. Road quality is poor and this needs addressing by the local councils for the benefit of everyone (not just triathletes two days a year) as pot holes were everywhere! Run is fast and flat and had enough aid stations. Finish line makes you feel like a big deal and post race they look after you so well.
Save £150 and do this instead of a 70.3 with a more aggressive marketing strategy.
Posted on 07.06.15
Really enjoyed my first experience of the Outlaw 70.3. Well organised event. Will be back next year!
Posted on 01.06.15
I took part in the first running of the Outlaw Half Tri in 2013, in preparation for the Outlaw Full Distance Tri the same year, but I've also completed the 2015 event as part of a Relay Team.
Taking place on largely the same course as the Full Distance Triathlon at Home Pierrepont with the 1.2 mile swim in the Regatta Lake, the 56 Mile bike on a similar but smaller route to the Full, while it's largely flat, it still has the short-sharp shock of Oxton Bank, being the only major uphill portion, and then back to HPP for the half marathon on the path around the Lake and canal path towards Nottingham Forest City Ground and the Embankment area of Nottingham City.
Organisation is one hallmark of all One Step Beyond events, they definitely have it down to a fine art - from the excellent pre-race briefing to the transition area placement direcly in front of the swim exit and an easy transition to the bike and run, and the superb Marshalls and Tri Club groups who staff the feed stations on the bike and run, and the post race support with medics to hand and post-race food, it's all thought of.
I would definitely recommend this for a Tri Novice looking to step up from Sprints who wants to try something more complex, or even a first timer who wants to dip their toe into the world of Middle Distance.
Posted on 08.08.17