We’ve been keeping an eye on the course and it’s all looking beautiful. The lake has been amazingly warm due to our hot summer, the bike course is green and the roads in generally good condition, and we’ll be starting our run course management programme to control the grass and undergrowth in the next few weeks.
The swim takes place in the beautiful lake at the Tri2O Swim Centre, surrounded by trees and sheltered from the wind. The Olympic distance swim is a two-lap course and the sprint distance race is a single lap.
As is to be expected with gravel pit lakes, there is sometimes weed present in the lake. The Tri2O Swim Centre work hard to keep any week under control to ensure the swimming experience is as pleasant as possible. We will advise as and when necessary regarding any weed present. We’re pleased to say that for the 2017 race, there was no weed at all!
The Reading Triathlon bike course takes you through the rural Berkshire roads, with some straight fast stretches and some gentle undulations too. Each loop is 22km; the sprint distance competitors complete one lap and the Olympic distance race is two laps.
Most of the bike course is on open roads, but they are largely quiet. Any potholes or hazards will be clearly marked on the road. There is one right turn at Grazeley Green, which is a mandatory foot down.
There is also one set of traffic lights on the bike course on a section of closed road near the end of each bike lap, but participants are permitted to go through the red light here (with care).
Here’s a video that one of our members recorded on a recent course recce – this was filmed at rush hour on a week night; there won’t be as much traffic on race day!
Participants finish the bike section back at the lake, and proceed out to a sheltered flat trail run around the lap; three laps for sprint distance (5.4km) and six laps for Olympic distance (10.8k). If you’re lucky you may see the odd rabbit or muntjac deer! The surface under foot is compact grass and trail, but can be challenging under foot – trail shoes are likely to be of benefit if you have them, particularly if it has been wet. The course is not “fast” but it is fun!