So – we find ourselves back in Leeds again.I’ll be honest – after last years’ shambles, my expectations were low – but I also knew the organisers could not afford for things to be as bad as last year.
So – no more talk of last year – what I will say – is well done to the new organisers – this was a great event for spectators and competitors. Reputation restored!
It was a very windy weekend in Leeds, and with talk of disc wheels being banned, Chris set off to the start earlier than planned – he left the flat at 5.30am for his 7.20 am start at Roundhay. I’ll be honest, I didn’t join him, and instead got up and out onto the course for around 8.30am to see the first guys through the run – bear in mind on this new course, they had run 7.5km before they got to the city centre.
I waited for Chris on the Headrow – near Browns bistro. A good spot as I got to see him 3 times on the run, and he could meet me easily post finish, as it was on the way to the shuttle. So #Tip1 – spectate on the Headrow and get your competitor to meet you.
As Chris was racing in the age group champs, he was ahead of the masses, however, I still think its best to get your competitor to come to meet you – as it can get tricky to cross the course at times- particularly when the masses run.
We headed towards the shuttle to get back to Roundhay to get Chris’ bike etc. All went like clockwork – again – I think because Chris was racing so early! #Tip 2 – take cash- shuttle bus was £3 for non competitors.
Collecting the bike etc was fine – albeit a climb up from transition to the car was pretty full on for someone who had just raced an olympic distance tri – it was hard enough for me!
We were lucky enough to be staying in the city centre, so were sorted and ready to watch the elites in the afternoon – awesome!
Whilst the move to one transition point rather than two reduces the opportunities you get to see your competitor, it has made the whole event run much more smoothly. And I did speak to a number of people who had driven up to Roundhay to watch the swim start, and get back down to the city to see the rest. So – if you have the vehicles, and bravery to negotiate Leeds’ mental road system, you may well get to see you competitor taking part in all 3 disciplines.
Top job Leeds – you’ve righted the many wrongs of last year.