South Shields Tri – Go Tri Event May 2019
Our Biggest Event Yet
South Shields Tri were back at it again with the next installment of their Go Tri series at Brinkburn Community Association, South Shields. The athletes could compete in one of three disciplines: An aquabike (300m swim, 6km bike for 14+) (100m swim, 1.6km bike for 9+) An aquathlon (300m swim, 2km run for 14+) (100m swim, 800m run for 9+) Or a triathlon (300m swim, 6km bike, 2km run for 14+) (100m swim, 1.2km bike, 800m run for 9+).
Marshalls begun the usual set up of the course mid-afternoon, spirits were high and the anticipation of our soon to be largest event yet created quite the nervous excitement within the team. It was our first time using our new transition bike racks, built by coach Grant, so it was encouraging to see the development of our course and equipment. Before we knew it, competitors began to arrive at registration and the buzz of the athlete pre-race preparation began. We had the most online sign ups to date and we were expecting some on the day entries, so it was all hands on deck. We had the privilege of welcoming the team of North Shields Poly junior athletes back again after a great turn out at our last event. It’s great to see support from fellow local tri teams. We also had the honour of being several adults and juniors’ first ever multi-sport event, which is what Go Tri is all about. There were some nerves from a few competitors, but everyone rallied together to provide encouragement and tips to those who needed it. We also had a few members of South Shields Tri competing, putting into practice their training and transitions. In total, we had 42 athletes competing, which was a club record! Once all athletes were numbered up and prepped, coach Grant provided a briefing for each discipline and answered any questions raised.
First in the pool were the juniors, who showed fantastic sportsmanship and discipline whilst waiting for their turn. Lane marshals Gillian, Ellen, Claire, and Gill counted their 6 laps whilst Sarah set off the competitors in 10-second intervals. Once the swim was complete, the juniors exited the pool and entered transition where they grabbed their bikes (or began their run if doing the aquathlon). Paul was there to offer guidance at transition and situated around the bike and run course were other marshals to also provide support. The bike route, although slightly challenging due to the off-road nature of the course, was tackled tremendously by the juniors who showed grit and determination the entire way. The run occurred around the track and as I’m sure those of you who have done a triathlon before know, the transition between the bike and the run can feel a bit disorientating on the legs. Despite this, each and every junior battled through and finished in style through the Go Tri flags and past the cheering of marshals and spectators. In total we had 21 juniors complete their respective disciplines, so well done to all!
Once the juniors had completed their race, it was time for the adults to take to the pool for their 300m (18 length) swim. The swim can often be the most daunting aspect of triathlon for new athletes, however, everyone tackled it with fantastic motivation and endurance. It doesn’t matter the time, everyone completes the same distance! Out on the bike, the athletes dug in as they began their 5 lap ride. Although it can be a little bit strange cycling soaking wet after the swim, each athlete pedaled hard and offered motivation and encouragement to their fellow competitors. South Shields Tri marshal Michelle provided some awesome encouragement at her bike course marshal point too. Finally, the run was upon them. 5 laps around the track and then down the finishing shoot to a roar of applause. Each athlete took to the run well and settled in for their laps. The friendly atmosphere between the athletes continued despite the challenge, which can only be commended as this is what Go Tri is all about. Fantastic sportsmanship everyone. At the finish, they were met by Gary who noted down their time and were then provided with a much needed bottle of water. In total we had 21 adults complete the course, well done everyone.
After a busy event, the course was packed up and a quick debrief was given to the marshals. Thank you to all of the positive feedback from both competitors and spectators. Each event is a learning opportunity for us, so we appreciate every comment. A massive thank you to all of the marshals that helped out on the course, the event couldn’t go ahead without you.
We hope to see as many of you as possible at our next event on the 26th of June 2019. You can sign up online here, through the Go Tri website or entries are available on the day at the registration table. Happy training folks!
by Ellen White