Sophie what a Deva……….

Sophie03The Deva Triathlon is an Olympic distance triathlon held in the centre of the historic City of Chester. It is currently in its 16th Year and is run by the City of Chester Triathlon Club members.
I originally entered the Deva Triathlon as a tester for the distance and in preparation for the Salford Olympic Triathlon at the end of July. Little did I know when I entered there were going to be over 1000 competitors and that it was a qualifying event for  the World Championships and European Championships (sending me in to panic as it was my first Olympic distance triathlon). However despite the high standard, there were also a good proportion of beginner triathletes.
The course was great and I really enjoyed the route for all three disciplines. The Swim was 850m upstream and then 650m back downstream. Despite being upstream the current wasn’t overly strong and so was suitable for all abilities.
The Bike route was a single loop on a mixture of open and closed roads into Wales via Eccleston, Rossett and Borras and back into Chester via Alford and Boughton. This was a fairly flat course which suited me well as I am not great at hills!
The Run route was by far the hardest discipline for me. It was a little undulating and included running over two bridges, the Old Dee Bridge as well as the suspension bridge – mostly on tarmac but also some gravel on the riverbank paths. The rest of the route continues out on to the Groves and in the Meadows with the finish being at the Bandstand, a truly City Centre race. Despite the run being 3 loops which seems to make things harder, the support that you were getting was amazing and kept you going when you were having those demotivating low points.

For those of you who need a little more persuading the goodie bag wasn’t bad at all, although you did not receive a finisher medal. You were presented with a great t shirt, various gels, recovery drinks and a drinks bottle along with coke, bananas, flap jack and Jaffa cakes – all provided at the end.
All in all this was a very well organised race with very friendly marshals throughout the whole route, and I would highly recommend it anyone who is either just starting out at the Olympic distances like myself of those of you wishing to qualify for World and European age groups.
Sadly I missed out on the European Qualification by 9 seconds….no walking on the run next time!!