Newmarket Triathlon – 15th May 2016 by Claire

Six years ago I stood on the side of the swimming pool at Newmarket 13243808_10156896500335471_2066309404482150558_otriathlon wondering how an earth I was going to survive a swim, bike, and then a run. It was my first ever triathlon. I’d made the mistake of letting my Dad sign us up for the race because when the start times came out we realised he had put us down as having super-fast estimated swim times. A FOUR MINUTE swim time if I can remember rightly, and at the time I was struggling to even do one length of front crawl!. My nerves quadrupled at the thought of entering the pool right at the end with all the professionals. I spoke to the girl in the queue, who was keen to tell me she’d won it the year before. Ok, now I wanted to go home and forget this whole triathlon lark. Fortunately, I survived the triathlon (after a much panicked swim), but as I crossed the finishing line the guy on the loud speaker shouted ‘our next finisher is Claire Duguid from Duguid Dynamos’. Not only had Dad given us a ridiculous estimated swim time, he’d also given us a ridiculous team name!! Dad would tell you it’s good character building but I wanted the ground to swallow me up. We still laugh about it now but from then on I entered my own triathlons!

Yesterday was only my second time at Newmarket triathlon. I was still getting over the first one! Last week I found my 2010 finishing time, which was an hour and 25 minutes. I’d finished 38th female and 8th in my age category. I thought if I could knock 10 minutes off, and not come last in my age category, I’d be happy.

I felt a lot more confident yesterday as I stood on the side of the pool waiting to start. Swim went ok and I managed a pretty fast T1. My usual transition times are long enough for you to think I’d had a leisurely cup of tea while putting on my bike shoes. I enjoyed the flat and fast bike course and managed to overtake a few people on the way. Seeing my Dad cheering me on, at the top of the hill on the second lap, made me go a bit faster. I never used to enjoy the bike part, but now it is my favourite discipline of the triathlon. I returned to transition and got a bit lost, as someone had racked their bike in my spot. I flapped about for a few seconds but managed not to make my usual cup of tea. Then onto the run. On Friday I had bought some new Adidas Boost trainers, which are so soft that I had made the decision to risk it and go without socks. They have actually changed my life!

It was great having support around the run course, and thanks to all our supporters for biking over to cheer us on. I managed to put on a sprint finish at the end to come home in 1.09.34. A whole 16 minutes off my 2010 time; 7th female overall and an age group win. I think from my excitement you probably guessed I’m not the Duguid who usually wins things.

It was a very well organised event and great to be part of such a supportive triathlon club. Gone are the days of Duguid Dynamos!

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