Satan’s river

Another weekend, another race, and the risk of another race report sounding like all the others. The 41 year-old winner, the 45 year-old runner-up, the unathletic guys flying past me in the run, the incredibly fit middle-aged men, and blah blah blah. So it goes doing triathlons in this part of the world.

I’m thinking about writing a letter to NADA, the anti-doping authority in Germany, imploring them to come to a race and do some testing, just to see what the results would be.

The race, organised by the Triabolos triathlon club (not my favourite club by a long stretch for a variety of reasons), was held in the south-east of Hamburg, swimming in the Elbe River at the rowing centre. It meant a long, straight swim (where you don’t feel like you’re making any progress) and having to dodge all these little buoys that mark the rowers’ lanes. Amazingly, I had the 8th fastest swim, but then got overtaken on the bike, and overtaken some more on the run, to finish 19th.

It rained. It was a fun race, well-organised. Good course. Only problem was that at the finish line, you could have alcohol-free wheat beer or some foul-tasting coconut water. There was nothing else to drink.

Because it rained, and was pretty cold, there was a race for the showers afterwards. The showers were a circular design; five streams from on central pole that reminded of a prison shower. Don’t drop the soap, but I could barely stand. The other guys showering were energetic and scrubbing animatedly, looking like they were ready to do the race again. Gawd.

Right. That’s it. It sounds very old-fashioned, but damn it, I’m going to write a letter.



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