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Stuart Lumb: here we go again...
Posted by: jetsetsupervet
Posted on: Tuesday 8th May 2012


Tags  Ampleforth  |  Jet Set Super Vet  |  JSSV  |  Stuart Lumb


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Tri247's resident Jet Set Super Vet (JSSV) and proud Yorkshireman Stuart Lumb is back racing and has already had his mountain bike out to kick off 2012 at the Ampleforth Sprint MTB Triathlon.


Well, the 2012 race season is with us and I've quite a few events lined up, namely a mix of on road triathlons, off road tri's plus a few Sportives chucked in for good measure. Paul Drinkwater of UKMTBTRI didn't put on his Ampleforth Sprint X Tri last year, but it was great that it was back on his 2012 events list. Two years ago the weather was very kind to us – nice and sunny. The forecast for the 2012 event indicated overcast skies, but no rain, plus a temp of 4°C. Well, at least they got the temperature right….

It's a 500m pool swim and I was in the first wave – I know my place - but had been a bit optimistic with my estimated swim time and so lost time letting faster swimmers pass me.

Like most athletes I have an extensive collection of attire and given the weather forecast (!) I decided to pose a bit and give my 2010 XTERRA Worlds jersey an airing. Duly attired, I leapt on my bike and hit the first decent, down across the usual rutted permanent pasture, which my Panaracer Fire XC Pro tyres courtesy of Freetown Sports of Hull coped with admirably. It was pretty nippy but acceptable until it started to hail! After the hail came the rain and it was then that I thought - damn.. should have put my waterproof on.. Ah well, hindsight is a wonderful thing. The bike leg was quite easy – even for JSSV – although one climb I remembered and was ready to get off and push in good time. The descents were quite fast and being open took the full brunt of the weather, so it was just a case of grin & bear it.

Stuart Lumb ©www.sportsunday.co.ukI was wet through, including my Serfas Pro gloves (thanks again Freetown Sports). I managed a smile for the long suffering SPORTSUNDAY events photography snapper, who must have been frozen solid and even colder than me. The bike leg had a nasty sting in its tail as the field, which was such fun as a descent, now became an ‘orrible lung-busting ascent, but at least slogging up it warmed me up a bit.

Then it was into T2, off with my nice Bell helmet, courtesy of DANISCO Agriculture and on with the trainers. 95% of the run was on road so I slithered down the first slope where trail shoes would have suited better. I squelched my way round, getting passed by numerous athletes – hey, nowt changes – climbed the numerous steps situated just short of T2 and gratefully crossed the finish line. Then it was a quick dash into the changing rooms and boy was that hot shower welcome. Our Barracuda chairman Simon “hard man” Pickering was also racing and even he said it was cold, so I didn't feel too bad after all. Paul had the results out that evening, so not kept in suspense for long. My time was pretty academic given the atrocious conditions but I was delighted not to have come last – that pleasure undoubtedly awaits me later this season! About one third of the competitors were ladies, which was encouraging, given that the longer Xtri races seem to attract far fewer of the fairer sex in comparison to on road events.

UKMTBTRI is hosting the GB championships in Coniston on June 10th so Drinkie is hoping for a good turn out. This year's ETU Cross Tri event is in Den Haag, Netherlands and will involve negotiating sand and contending with very strong winds as well. It's very heartening to see that the GB squad is now up to 40, but still room for plenty more – so come on guys and gals, the Netherlands is but a few hours away on the ferry! Details all on the BT website. Significantly, Den Haag will host the ITU World Cross Tri event in 2013 so racing there this year will provide invaluable experience.

This year the Worlds are in Alabama and I'm told it's already 30°C there. Sadly it's a case of quality not quantity re our GB squad. I have a prior commitment otherwise would have entered, as an ex-pat. Lancastrian, Pete Lilley, whom I've raced twice against in Maui and in Spain at last year's ITU event will be racing for the USA. Pete had a very bad arm injury last Autumn but thankfully is practically 100% fit again .He told me this was the year when the White Rose could be triumphant, but I told him when I finally beat him I want him to be 100% fit and not to beat him with one arm behind his back! Also had a robustly worded mail from “Kahuna Dave” Nicholas, who is XTERRA Supremo and also the USA Worlds Cross Tri team manager, demanding that I get myself over to compete. Nice to be wanted !

This current inclement UK weather is hardly making training enjoyable, but hey ho, we just have to grin and get on with it .

I still see the Death-Wish riders out and about, clad in black from head to toe. Black is for the brainless - but it does make for good looking body bags…


Stuart Lumb About the Author

Stuart Lumb lives in God's County - Yorkshire, where else.. took up triathlon when most of his peers were packing in. Works abroad a lot hence christened "Jet Set Super Vet" by a Barracuda club mate. Also enjoys competing in cross tri / XTERRA events - did I hear "Crazy JSSV"? But, you only live once...


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