The Triathlon Show

Last Sunday, Andy and I visited the Triathlon Show at Sandown Park. It was fantastic, and we didn’t take advantage of half of what was on offer.

There were so many stalls and booths to browse and kit to try out, that I didn’t have time to attend any of the seminars on offer, have a go in the Endless Pool or take part in the Powerbar 10K that was on in the morning.

The great advantage in terms of kit was to be able to touch and feel so many models of everything in one place. I spent (maybe more than…) half an hour just choosing a pair of pool goggles, with advice from the Speedo rep (who confirmed I have funny shape eye sockets). I settled on the white/blue Speedo Fastskin3 Elite. I also looked at Brooks’ 2013 range of shoes, and tried on a pair of Vibram FiveFingers SPYIRDON LS trail shoes. Though my Brooks Ravenna 3 are lighter weight than any shoe I’ve had previously (and I’ve just bought a second pair while they were on 50% sale at Sweatshop) I’ve not seriously considered barefoot running. It was interesting to feel how you instantly want to be up on the balls of your feet when you put the FiveFingers on.

I also had a go on the Wattbike (endorsed, as they say, by British Cycling). It’s obviously built to withstand anything you (or Chris Hoy) can throw at it; the range of adjustment provided by the fan and magnetic resistance was excellent; and the feedback provided by the monitor interface is great. It gives you the ability to train with power, which is lacking from my current armoury. I would find the polar power plot especially useful for improving my pedal stroke. It’s just a shame that these bikes are about £2000!

Former Olympic and world champion Rebecca Romera was handing out flyers for her new sports performance consultancy and Retul bike fitting business, and we didn’t see Chrissie Wellington only because of the crowds waiting to get books signed!

I also had a good look at all the aero wheelsets on offer. Again, it’s nice to be able to touch the product and talk to the people in the know, since there are so many criteria to judge against. Race Wheels Rental were very friendly and I have wondered about hiring from them to gain a better understanding of the pros and cons. The v:race:50 wheels on the vo2cycling stand looked nice. Owning a British designed wheelset would be fab, so I was hoping ARC Carbon Ceramic Wheels might also be at the show, but they weren’t here.

The one oddity on the kit front was that we didn’t see a single pair of cycling/tri shoes. I’d love to get a pair that I can race in sockless, because although I like my Scott Tri 2009 shoes, they rub my toes when I’ve tried using them barefooted.

Finally, I picked up loads of flyers for events around the UK, and triathlon training camps/family holidays around Europe.

A great day out.

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