Monday, 16 September 2013

ITU final

Sunday morning and we were due to head off down to Hyde park and watch the Men's final of the ITU World Triathlon Series. It was the Grand Final. Less than an hour from our house (flat).

Before anyone asks why we went to the Men's not the Women's race the answer is two-fold.

1. We got up at about 04:00 during the Olympics to watch the Women's race at the same venue. The Women's race Started early on Saturday, The Men's at Lunchtime on Sunday.

2. We knew people going to the Men's race, who importantly were working on the organisational team for the event.

As anyone who saw the event will know, Alistair Brownlee was running on  an achilles injury and Johnathon was beaten by Gomez in the last few yards. A shame to be sure, but the event encouraged  me in several ways.

1. As we arrived the age group races were underway. Marshalls were stopping people crossing the road to let runners by. The stopped pedestrians would then applaud the runner (who might be 19 they might be 60).

2. A lot of those age-group competitors were still in their kit 2 hours later cheering on the elite athletes

3. Next to our spot were under 23 group competitors from GB,  Ireland and South Africa all cheering along competitors from all countries as well as their own.

4. The amateur age-group racers are more likely to be riding the full carbon time-trialling machine than  some of the National elites. Lots of reasons for this but you can use good kit at any level and you don't need it to win.

5. There are age-group categories up to 85+.

I work with Social Care teams and am used to hearing 65+, 75+ and 85+ age-bands in relation to care rather than National Sport. Great stuff

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