Round 4 of the 2022/23 North Coast Interclub League Sat 18th Feb 23.
Written by Huw Jones
After the awful floods of Feb 2022 and event cancellation it was nice to have the Tweed Enduro back at "Potty" this year. A number of the Breakers made the trip to Pottsville on Friday evening to register and erect the club marquee.
Congratulations go to the members (aka Deb) who secured prime position for the marquee, right next to the Lions Club sausage sizzle. It was a bold move and, had the wind picked up, could have ended in a smelly disaster. Thankfully it was a beautiful still morning and the snags tasted seriously good at the end of the race.
We woke on Saturday morning to 18 degrees, clear skies and still. Another perfect day for racing. The Breakers initially believed they’d taken a small team of 11 to the Tweed Enduro this year, but as we all congregated at the club marquee, we were pleased to see some old-faces had also entered, including Chris C from Brisbane/Brunswick, Danny R and newly signed up Caroline H. With Claire still under doctor’s orders to continue her binge watching, and Robyn still under the weather, there was only one Breaker attempting the Enduro distance this year, mad-dog-
Englishman, Luke. The rest of us did the oh-so-easy sprint.
A big thanks should go to the vocal and enthusiastic Byron Breakers Supporters Club who turned up in force: John and Becky (Co-Presidents), Nyssa, (all sporting their official t-shirts), and honorary supporters Robyn and Claire. Ahead of the race, as we were chatting in the marquee, a troupe of young Korean competitors walked past. We knew they were Korean because they had the word “Korea” on the back of their suits. They looked serious, young and fit. And they were… 3 of them came 1st , 2nd and 3rd overall !! Turns out they all represent Korea and were in Australia on holiday.
As the sprinters stood at the start of the swim, there was plenty of discussion about the tide. Traditionally the Tweed Enduro is a fast swim, as the competitors generally benefit from an outgoing tide. However, this year the first wave was 3 minutes before high tide and the start was 900m from the mouth of the river. So, it looked like we would still be pushing against the last of the incoming tide. There are a few announcements you don’t want to hear as you wait at the start of the swim. One would be “there’s a large smack* of blue-bottles coming our way, but if you’re quick we should miss them”. Another, and the one that was broadcast at the Tweed Enduro at the start of the sprint swim, is “Race competitor number 82, we have just moved your bike to the correct location in transition”. Poor competitor 82 was going to have one of the longest T1 times ever trying to locate their bike. *Word of the day is “smack”: The collective noun for a group of jelly fish. The swim was predictably slow for most of us. Largely because we are slow swimmers, but also not helped by the tide. But the water was clear and warm, so it was a good start to the event. Interestingly the tide did not seem to affect Jaime, who aquaplaned down the course in the 4th quickest swim time of the day.
The bike course is an out-and-back and slightly longer than normal at 22.5km to accommodate the Enduro (i.e. 4 x 22.5 = 90). It is a bit boring and, whilst there are no major potholes, the road surface is bumpy. However, there was no wind to speak of.
The run leg is also an out-and-back course, and the path winds along the riverbank behind the houses. It’s relatively flat but always deceptive (at least for old-man Huw) as several of the turns look the same. Thank goodness for Garmin. As each member of the Breakers team came across the finish line it was obvious we had done the club proud with everyone in the top 10 of their categories and many podium finishes, including five 1st places. A few specific mentions:
Jaime was the 5th fastest overall and the 3rd fastest non-Korean. Brooke’s training has obviously been paying off and was the fastest female from the Breakers, and beat Huw by 21 seconds and 38 years. Nerida and Pete were more amazing than usual just by competing, having done sooo much eating, drinking and dancing training over the past 5 weeks (which they already excelled at anyway btw); but little triathlon training, unless you include strolling around the deck of ship with a glass of bubbly. Tweed Enduro was Sandra’s first race after injuring her back and she came out swinging, coming 1st in her category.
After the sprint race, Deb also took the opportunity to hand out a few Breakers business cards, including to Chris C’s training partner Johnno R. He came 7th overall and first in his age category (M45-49 – which btw, we do not have anyone in right now!). Good move, Deb.
In the Breakers Intraclub Challenges, the results were:
David vs Jaime. Jaime won as David was unable to compete due to work commitments
Gracie vs Deb. Deb thrashed Gracie in this leg because Gracie was working
Elize vs Robyn. Elize beat Robyn as Robyn was a Supporter for this event.
Huw vs Nick vs Irv. A reversal of fortunes from South West Rocks with Huw beating Nick and Irv (although Irv would say it’s because he didn’t enter the race – lame excuse). Will G would have won this challenge if he’d got his application form in on time.
The results for the sprint were:
Jaime C – 1st in 35-39 - 1:10:38
Danny R – 1st in 30-34 - 1:23:25
Will G - 6th in 35-39 - 1:26:03
Brooke F – 6th in 20-24 - 1:26:55
Huw J - 3rd in 55-59 - 1:27:16
Nick E – 7th in- 35-39 - 1:28:56
Mick D – 4th in 55-59 - 1:29:04
Chris C - 1st in 60-64 - 1:29:14
Caroline H - 2nd 35-39 1:30:16
Deb F – 2nd in 60-64 - 1:32:31
Elize S - 4th in 35-39 - 1:36:01
Sandra K - 1st in 65-69 - 1:40:27
Anna J - 6th 40-44 1:45:30
Nerida C – 1st in 70-74 - 1:59:38
Pete C – 2nd in 75+ – 2:03:36
Luke unfortunately had a nightmare on the bike leg of the Enduro race, with 3 consecutive punctures.
Despite a valiant effort, supported by some very kind onlookers, Luke had to cut the ride short and get on with the run. Punctures in races are always a pain, but worse when you can’t find the reason for them. Anyway, I’m sure Luke has learnt a valuable lesson - next time make sure the team support car is ready with 3 spare bikes.
The next race in the NSW North Coast series is in 1 month at Kingscliff on the 19th March.
In the meantime check out these fabulous photos taken by team members Becky and Charlie