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Hook or by Crook 2014

Well done to Ciara Bowe and Bill Barry competing in this year’s Hook by Crook Sprint Tri in Dunmore East. It was Ciara’s first Triathlon and she recorded a fantastic result finishing very strongly.

Ciara Bowe, 2014

Ciara Bowe, 2014

Race report by Bill Barry

“Twas another beautiful day for the Hook or by Crook Triathlon in fabulous Dunmore East. It has to be the first race morning that I haven’t been a ball of nervous tension. I must be getting used to this madness. I really look forward to this race every year and it didn’t dissapoint yet again. Sun, Sea, Great atmosphere, and my family there to cheer me on. (i think when the girls are older they’ll certify me as totally nuts).
For the first time I was in the second (old men & ladies) wave. I was looking forward to the sedate, non-agressive race start. Not a bit of it. I looked around and there seemed to be way more in wave 2 than wave 1. And the start was quite congested and choppy. I was sure there was a few karate chops aimed in my direction. I was happy with the way the swim went and particularly my navigation for a change. Thanks again to Liam O’Neill for forcing us to practice that!! I got out of the water and actually ran up the cliff path. I usually run/walk this portion. Did my T1 on auto-pilot (very slow) and out I went on the bike.
I had said to myself beforehand that I would try to force the pace a bit more on the bike, as this is where i usually hold back. But my legs weren’t responding. Eventually after about 4k my legs woke up and up went the speed. But a slight cross/headwind limited my top end. I was happy with the way things were going til the return leg and LOTS of traffic. Car traffic. It was silly and downright dangerous at times. And just when I left the traffic behind(after some colourful hand gestures(who knew I could cycle one-handed)) I came across more traffic, only this time in the form of a bloody peloton. Or pelo-tone as Sean Kelly would say. At least 15 mostly black and green jerseys riding together. Where were the marshalls? A little colourful language in a slightly raised voice put the frighteners on a few of ’em and I was past in a jiffy(still mumbling profanities under my breath). Into T2 and again into slow-mo. Too relaxed me thinks.
And away on the run. As is usual with this race I started the run with a dodgy gut. Too much fluids maybe. I let a few people go past me at the start of the run up the hill as I knew there was a sting in the tail of this hill. And as I predicted (yes I was feeling a bit smug) I passed them back out on the last steepest section of the hill. As we flattened out at the top I decided to kick into top gear. Only to find i left it in a ditch somewhere when I started Ironman training!! As hard as I tried I could only go up one gear from Ironman pace. I had some company for the rest of the run and trotted out a good strong steady, if not lightning, pace.As I was coming in the last few K I thought to myself-Jaysus is it over already? At the finish a young fella less than half my age thanked me for pacing him!!! I took his details so I could send him the bill.
I ended the day with a 1:30. Not much of an improvement on last year, but I enjoyed every second of it.”

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