The Bastion Iron Distance Triathlon is a full distance triathlon and is part of the Castle Triathlon Series. It takes place at Hever Castle in Surrey, UK. Sundried ambassador Matt Leeman achieved a fantastic win at the 2017 event and gives us his account of the race.
Heat and Hills at The Bastion Full Iron Distance Triathlon
This was only my second full iron distance triathlon, so I'm very much still finding my feet when it comes to racing events this long. However, I've spent a good block of training away in Cyprus over the winter and more recently at altitude at the Trisutto base in St. Moritz, Switzerland. This has put me in the best possible position to break into the pro triathlon ranks as you have to fully commit or you'll fall short.
The swim start was the most picturesque I've raced, taking place at the end of the Hever Castle estate's Italian garden, with mist floating across the water's surface. The race organiser delayed the start so the mist could clear and then we were off. I lead the swim as this is my strength and something I like to capitalise on and to put others under pressure early on. It was a technical swim, consisting of a fair few turns coming back along a river section created to naturally fill the lake. I completed the 2.4-mile (3.86km) swim in a time of 50:27, taking the swim course record.
I had looked into the bike course profile before the race and knew it was going to be hilly. Luckily I favour the hills and got to work early and began putting time into my competitors, with the gap increasing each of the three laps. I enjoyed the bike and finished the 112 miles (180.25km) in a time of 05:29:55 (Including getting sent the wrong way but luckily realising the mistake after a couple of minutes!).
Back into the castle grounds and it was off on the run, the midday sun was fully beating down now, and similar to the bike, the run was going to be pretty hilly. I ran a conservative marathon distance (26.2 miles/42.16km) as I am racing again in two weeks time at the Outlaw in Nottingham, therefore had to be sensible to be able to back this performance up in a relatively short amount of time.
These days the trend for long course racing is to wear a skin suit rather than the conventional sleeveless tri-suit. I have tested both and I'm in agreement that the skinsuit is the best option for long distance. It is faster on the bike and keeps you cool on the run. The only place the sleeveless suit has an advantage is the swim, but this is relatively small and when you consider proportionately a lot longer time is spent on the bike and run than the swim, it is a very wise investment to make. I also got a lot of comments on how good the Sundried tri-suit looks!
While California is stunning all year long, there’s no better time than summer to get outside and get active! These five events all across the state will get your blood flowing in no time.
San Diego Triathlon Classic
Saturday, September 9, 2017
NTC Park in Liberty Station San Diego, CA 92106
You’ve worked. You’ve trained. You’ve sweated. Now watch it all pay off! Choose from the Sprint Course or the more challenging Olympic Course. The swimming will take you into the San Diego Bay, while the cycling course runs through the Point Loma Naval Base and the running portion finishes the afternoon with the beautiful course through NTC Park.
Never competed in a triathlon before? It’s a great way to get your fitness up and get involved before taking the big jump. Best of all, the proceeds go to support research, education, and support for patients with Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis. What’s better than helping your body and helping others at the same time?
Saturday, July 29, 2017
Bayshore at 5415 East Ocean Boulevard, Long Beach, CA 90803
Beaches aren’t just for surfing anymore! Take it easy with a 5k or 10k race on some of Southern California’s most iconic coastline, or opt for a traditional marathon or half-marathon. Instead of following a linear course, runners go back and forth along a section of designated beach area. Stay cool with the ocean breeze, plenty of water fountains, and of course, the beautiful scenic views. All finishers receive a medal.
Saturday, July 15, 2017
1150 W Foster Road Orcutt, CA 93455
Not only is this great exercise and a fundraiser for a great cause, it’s also a stunning trip through the open roads of Wine Country. Not up for a full century? No worries: metric centuries and quarter centuries are also part of the event. Registration fee includes a commemorative t-shirt, maps, routes markings, rest stops, and barbecue at the route’s end! That’s right…barbecue! Choose from beef, chicken, or vegetable, and enjoy a tasty reward for a job well done. Net proceeds from the Windmill Century are donated to bike safety initiatives in local elementary schools.
Pier To Peak Half Marathon
Sunday, September 3, 2017
State Street Santa Barbara, CA 93101
Billed as “the world’s toughest half marathon,” this run isn’t for the faint of heart due to a course that takes runners to an elevation of 3996 feet. The trail starts at Stearns Wharf and carries on through the city of Santa Barbara all the way into Los Padres National Forest with some truly stunning views of the South Coast along the way. Perfect for experienced runners hungry for something outside the ordinary! All finishers get a finisher's t-shirt and a commemorative coin.
Diablo Trail Run
Sunday, August 27, 2017
96 Mitchell Canyon Road, Clayton CA 94517
Diablo offers something for athletes at all levels: choose from the 4-mile course, the 10-mile course, a half-marathon, a full marathon, and the 50k run, all through Diablo State Park in Clayton, California. The 4-mile course keeps a relatively steady elevation in Mitchell Canyon though the longer courses do get mountainous. Runners will take in the park atmosphere and savour unique views of the San Francisco Bay and the surrounding valleys. Pre-registration includes a t-shirt; finishers will receive a custom medal and 50k finishers will also receive a custom coaster.
California’s vast and varied landscapes make it a state like no other. What better way to experience it than by getting out and seeing it for yourself? Trust us, it’s good for the body and the soul.
About the author: JT Lyons grew up riding the canyons of San Diego on his single speed Huffy. Some time in between falling in love with his Huffy and the 200+ triathlons he's competed in, JT created the San Diego Triathlon Classic. Find out more on their website.