Race tips

If you are wearing a wetsuit, then make sure you've practiced swimming in open water and in a wetsuit before race day. It's quite different to swimming in a pool, and you don't want to be trying anything for the first time on race day.  Try to use a wetsuit designed for tirathlon if you can - these have more flexible shoulders designed to make it easier to swim in.  If you don't have a wetsuit you might be able to borrow one from a friend or search the internet for wetsuit hire.

Wetsuits are optional.  You should only consider not wearing a wetsuit if you are a confident, experienced swimmer, used to open-water swims. All other competitors, particularly young, old, nervous or weak swimmers should wear a wetsuit, and have practiced swimming in open-water in their wetsuit prior to the event. Wearing a wetsuit will keep you warm, afloat and the extra buoyancy helps you swim faster too! 

Practice riding in a group again, it's very different to riding on your own, and on race day you will find yourself with lots of other cyclists around you. Similarly, try to include a few runs straight off your bike in your training sessions. It feels pretty weird when you first try it, as your muscles try to adapt to the change in 

movement, but gets easier with practice. You don't need to run far, just 5 minutes or so to get used to the feeling as your legs go from cycling to running.

Make a list of what you need to bring on race day. Wetsuit, bike, clothing, helmet, running shoes, race kit, to name a few. Make sure you have a towel and some clean clothes to change into after your race, while you cheer on your friends. (If you want a small towel to dry off after the swim, make sure you have a second towel for after your race, as you won't be allowed back into transition until the last competitor has started their run.)

Make sure your bike is in good working order, with brakes that work well and gears that change easily. We recommend that you get your bike checked and serviced by your local bike shop before the race. Although the bike course is short, it's quite hilly and challenging, and you don't want to be struggling to get round quickly and safely. Think about bringing a spare inner tube, bike pump and tools for any last minute emergencies.

Arrive early for registration and on race morning - you don't want to find yourself rushing and feeling the pressure. On race day make sure you leave plenty of time to get from your car park to the venue, rack your bike in transition and get changed ready to race.

Familiarise yourself with the course and where you enter and exit transition, and where your bike is racked. The courses and transition will be marked and marshalled, but nothing beats checking it out for yourself. Coming to register early is a great chance to do this, and you can have a coffee and something to eat in the Cloud and check out all the great gear at the Expo too!

Make sure you have a warm up while you're waiting for your swim start on the day. With the number of competitors we can't have an in-water warm up, but a couple of minutes jogging on the spot and arm circles will get your heart pumping and muscles warm ready for the swim. 

Handy team hint...

Be ready to take the timing chip (transponder) off your team mate when they come into the handover area. They'll have just finished their leg as hard as they can, so it's much quicker if you take the timing chip off for them and then put it round your ankle before heading out to do your leg.