The following email went out to all Cotswold 113 2021 Competitors today
Cotswold 113 – June 6th 2021
Good afternoon all, I hope everyone’s feeling ready for racing in a little over 2 weeks ?
Things are shaping up nicely for the race on June 6th, so in this email I’ll bring you all up to speed in a few bits and bobs and go through some of the last bits of info in the run up to the race
This is going to be a good length email, so I’d grab a strong coffee and a seat if I were you 🙂
In this email, I’ll cover the following :
– Covid19 regulations at the race
– Race info Pack – Start list with waves and numbers
– Lake temp – Behaviour out on the bike and run courses – What else is coming from us before race day
Covid19 regulations at the race
As you might imagine, there’s going to be some rules around Covid19 at our event in order to make it possible to go ahead, and to ensure you can all turn up to the safest race possible in a couple of weeks.
The safety of all of you, your families, our team, the marshals and anyone else that’s even remotely involved in the race is of the upmost importance to us, and although some of you might think our approach to be a little OTT, it’s important that we make sure we absolutely minimise the spread of what’s still about and any new variants that might or might not be present over race weekend.
It’s important to appreciate that in our experience of dealing with you all over the last few months, that there’s a real mix of people that are either still very scared of mixing in public at this stage, right through to others who are really quite over it and are trying to go about their daily lives again without restriction.
Therefore, I’d really like to ask that the people that fall within the latter position, when coming along to our race, to try and respect the position of those of you that are in the former and aren’t yet ready to go back to getting up close in transition, hugging, licking each others faces and all the other things we probably did at triathlons in the pre Covid times.
We are going to take a belt and braces approach to Social Distancing and the reduction of Covid Spread on June 6th, and some of the measures we are going to implement are as follows :
1) Each competitor will be temperature checked by our medical team on arrival on site, and anyone displaying a temperature higher than the government guidelines, or any of the other recognised symptoms, will be turned away (if you have a genuine medical condition that gives a high temp as normal, you will need a Doctors note)
2) I request that each of you, during race week, to head to https://www.gov.uk/order-coronavirus-rapid-lateral-flow-tests and order yourselves a free pack of Covid19 Rapid Flow tests. This takes 2 mins to order, they come in a couple of days and take 5 mins to do. If you can then take your test on Saturday the 5th June please, this will then provide our competitors and teams another level of protection from any spread should any of you have Covid and be asymptomatic.
We don’t need to know that you’ve done it, and we trust that you will do it yourselves, and if it came back positive, that you obviously wouldn’t turn up on Sunday 6th.
I really do appreciate that this is an OTT belt and braces approach to racing and I recognise the increased hassle we’re causing you all, but in these strange times, it’s super important that 113 Events are showing that we really are being careful and that are races are being ran in the safest possible manner for everyone involved.
3) When you arrive in transition in the morning on the Sunday, you will be asked to wear a face mask in transition during the time you are racking your bike. You won’t need to wear it when racing, but for first thing in the morning before the race starts, a mask is compulsory in transition.
There’s a few other tweaks that you will see in the race info pack later in this email, but other than that, we are going to make the day as fun as possible and hope that it provides a little chunk of some kind of normality in these strange times.
Triathlon has always been a very individual sport, so social distancing on the course is second nature to you all anyway, and other than needing to keep 2m apart where possible on the run, this is pretty much a normal race.
Race info Pack
We have put together the race info pack for the 2021 Cotswold 113 that you can download here: https://www.113events.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/05/1132021-–-Race-Information-Sheet.pdf
This is your information on everything that happens on race day, and it’s definitely worth taking the time to read through it in full please
The maps for Bike and run are quite small in the PDF pack, but I’ve added links to both in the doc, and from there you can head to MMR and zoom in on the maps and download .gpx files if you wanted to then upload them to your Garmin or similar devices
I’d also like to draw your attention to the Aid station detail in the pack, as we’re not allowed now to have the full spread we do normally as this presents an increased ‘Touch risk’
I find the place I do my best reading is on the toilet, so feel free to print it off and leave it next to your throne for maximum, uninterrupted, reading time
It’s your pack for you, so if you think there’s anything missing that you’d like to see included, please just ask and we’ll update it
Start list with waves and numbers
The start lists with your wave times and race numbers have been up on our site for a few weeks now, but if you’ve not found them already, you can see them here : https://www.113events.com/cotswold-113/start-list/
I have tried to accommodate 99.9% of requests for waves that were submitted within the window before the start list was fixed, and hope that you’re all happy with your allocating. I’m afraid this can now not be changed
Unless you’ve not been outside for the last month, you will have noticed that no one’s bothered to invite the summer along yet and it’s been blimmin freezing cold and wet. Unfortunately, this means that the lake we use for racing is pretty chilly still at the moment, and yesterday was measuring in around 14-15deg, which is a tad fresh for anyone but the hardened bunch of swimmers that swim OW all year around.
However, lake 32 is pretty shallow at around 6-7foot for most of the way around, so by virtue of the really high surface area to volume ratio this gives, it does change temperature pretty quickly and a couple of weeks without too much rain and a small amount of sunshine, and that can easily pick up 3-4deg
With this in mind, I wanted to draw your attention to the BTF’s Wetsuit regulations, whereby the Wetsuit Optional Range is 15-23deg. I am fully expecting it to be within that range on race day, so this will please that very small minority of swimmers that we have that like to swim without a wetsuit.
It will mean that for the rest of us ‘normal people’ it’s gonna be chilly meaning we’ll need our precious wetsuits, so I wanted to let you all have a link to the BTF’s rules on Swimming and what you can and can’t use in Section 4 here : https://www.britishtriathlon.org/britain/documents/events/competition-rules/british-triathlon-competition-rules-2020.pdf
I’m very conscious that many of you will have lost a good chunk of your planned swim training in the early part of this year where pools had to close, and that swimming 1.9km is a tough target for some even with a structured training program. Therefore, just to reiterate my previous mails, we’re going to offer a couple of alternative options on race day or either a 400m Swim or to start on the bike and miss the swim completely.
The 1,900m course, will of course, still be available for most of you, and everyone will still get to cross the finish line on the red carpet and collect your medal and goody bag.
We will have timing mats at the start of each option, and will pick up on the day which start you’ve taken, and produce separate sets of results accordingly. You don’t need to tell us in advance, and can make your mind up on race morning
Behaviour out on the bike and run courses
Over the last ten year’s, we’ve run this race 19 times, and up to Sept 2020, the standard of riding on public roads has been, in 99.9% of competitors, exemplary.
Last year, we eventually ran two races in August and Sept. For the August race, the standard of riding out on the bike course was amazing, and by far the best we’ve seen to date
However, in Sept, it was shocking in some cases, and really dangerous in others.
The roads we use for both the bike and run courses are largely still open, and although there’s really very little traffic on the roads we use at that time of the morning, you will still encounter other cars and road users, and must still ride within the rules of the road set out by the Highway code.
Residential relationships are absolutely key to us for the future of the race, and in Sept last year, we had more complaints from local residents than all of the 18 previous races put together.
As you might imagine, this is not great for the race, and I had to go and visit several parish council meetings for a grilling and basically a series of bollockings.
Luckily, we have such a good record previously, that all these various stakeholders could be convinced that this was a just a blip and that we’ll return back to totally safe racing in 2021.
Therefore, this year’s races, and races going forward will be under a high level of scrutiny and the riding out on the course must be of the highest standards again please.
Keeping the residents happy is super important to me, and although I appreciate there’s a trend where other races don’t seem to care about these relationships out on their bike and run course, I really do and to me having the race completely embraced by the residents local to the lake is very important indeed.
I don’t like taking the hard line approach to competitors on issues like these, and I’m well aware that it was just a very small minority that tarnished the image of the majority, but from now on any dangerous or discourteous riding will be treated like we do for intentional littering, and it will result in an instant DQ from the race and you will not be allowed to continue in the event at all.
It’s entirely possible that you might come across a little old lady (or gentleman) on their way to church in the morning, and if they want to drive along at 10 mph, that’s their prerogative to do so. What we saw in Sept last year was a case not dissimilar to this where the driver received abuse from a cyclist (potentially a cyclist not involved in our race, but a cyclist none the less), and in other cases where cars were undertaken or groups of cyclists thinking it’s ok to overtake 3 abreast and be on the wrong side of the road
I specifically want to draw your attention to the area of Latton which is around 20 miles into the course, and you will pass through the village in both directions. We will have ‘Respect the Area’ signs up here, and would ask that you’re all extra courteous through this area, although I would hope that you all will be exercising the same standard of riding throughout the entire course.
In Latton, and a couple of other areas of the course that I’m not going to list, we’ll also be posting Trusted marshals from our own team who’s job it will be to look out for any sub standard riding and issuing DQ’s accordingly.
As I said before, I hate having to apply a hard line on this sort of thing, and I really do appreciate that the issues we had were caused by a very small minority and that the rest of you are all amazing, but we absolutely have to stamp this out as much like Drafting in Modern Triathlon, it can easily become a problem so needs to be nipped off early.
Right, rant over !!
What else is coming from us before race day
Over the next couple of weeks, I’m going to be sending out a link to the race briefing video. We generally send this out during race week as it’s important that it’s all fresh in your minds come race day.
I will also keep you all updated on course conditions, what to expect on race morning and giving out a few little reminders of what to bring for registration and parking
If anyone has any questions, or there’s anything we can help with in the run up to June 6th, please just ask as it’s what I’m here for
Cheers and happy training
Graeme, Nicci and the 113 Events team