Castle Howard Triathlon, July 2022

Published date: Mon 5th December

I took part in the Castle Howard Sprint Plus Triathlon (800m/46km/8km) on 23rd July 2022 and really enjoyed it. Well, most of it… This was my first triathlon and whilst I wasn’t planning to take it at too much of a steady pace, I also wasn’t pushing myself too hard. My aim was to just finish the race in a reasonable time and not disgrace myself. When I first signed up, I was nervous about the swim as I hadn’t swum in a really long time, never in a lake, and admittedly was a little hydrophobic… I then started doing a lot of swimming and felt more comfortable with it, and by race day I was feeling a lot more nervous about the cycle, as it was a very hilly route! In the end, it was neither the swim or the cycle I had to worry about, but the run.

Course roundup…

I would say the race was well organised; it was well signposted and the videos sent out beforehand were informative. The main draw backs of this event were that the lake was filthy (the weeds were like tentacles wrapping around my limbs as I swam, and this was apparently after it had been weeded), both the cycle and the run route were pretty hilly (and I hate hills) and T1 was a 600m uphill jog from lake to transition. Whilst it was unavoidable, that just felt mean. That being said, obviously the beautiful Yorkshire countryside made for a very scenic cycling route. The marshals and the crowds were also great and very encouraging around the whole route, as were some fellow competitors!

Lessons learnt…

The biggest lesson I learnt at this event was to fuel properly. I took two energy gels with me (as well as a Clif bar and electrolytes), and ate one at the start of the cycle. I intended to have my second a while later but didn’t feel like it at the time, and ended up regretting this decision on the second lap of the run when I quickly realised I felt cold and light-headed. Lesson learnt. I would recommend this race, but think I’ll try some different venues next.

Written and raced by Becky Todd