Tweed Coast Enduro: "and on the 6th day they raced again". Triathlon Australia, in their infinite wisodm, set the first two of three races for long course World Champ qualification as Hell of the West and the Tweed Coast Enduro. This year these races were 6 days apart. Responses from official when questuoned on their choice was "well you dont have to do both".
This race was a 1/2 Iron distance consisting of a downhill swim in a tide assisted river and a reasonably flat ride and run. Being a low hifh tide and starting 2.5km from the ocean mouth meant we had a walking start. When the horn sounded we were knee deep in 27 degree briny goodness and made to run/ dolphin dive 50m upstream before crossing to the other side of the river to find the deep portion of the channel. My race tactic was to run for as long as I could in the shallow water and then swim following the bouys which should outline the deepest point downstream (also the fastest portion of the current). After the first 500m I was in clear water as far as the eye could see. The whole course pack were up against a bank following each other like a baitball. I was concerned but stuck to the plan. By the time we hit the exit turning bouy the water had you feeling like Ian Thorpe. Free speed. Transition was a 300m run and this was added to your swimtime just to mess with your head.
The bike was a 4 lap out and back course with 2 small hills of 20 metres on the far side of the loop. It was filled with the sprint and the enduro for the first lap making for a clogged course. If you love overtaking people then this is the race for you. Around the 3rd lap the wind turned up to put a slight spoil to a great ride. The speed fell and the thighs burnt. I started questioning if i had applied enough vaseline and what was going to sting first in the shower. The wind dropped off on the last lap and I spun into transition happy to say goodbye to my chaffe-maker for the day.
Onto to the run and Mr Sun decided to make his presence known. One serve of hot and a side salad of humid please. There was no ice on the course for the first of 3 laps. Someone on finishing their first lap (me) said to an official 'there's no ice on the course ... this is bulsh!t'. To my suprise the ice appeared after that. If you can remember to have one in transition, keep a freezer bag and shove it down your top. This is the beat way to hold the ice (given to you in cups) on the back of your neck and not in your knickers tickling your bits. But i digress..
The finishline was a welcome sight. Lawnsoakers were strung under mini-marquees and they had ice cold alcoholfree beer being handed out. The taste of something non-sweet after 5 hours was a treasure.
I was stoked with what i could pull out on a race 6 days after Hell of the West. I managed to knock 25 minites off my Western Sydney time set in December. All cred to an awesome coach Nathan Miller.
Best bit of the whole race: the goody bag is a full waterproof backpack.