From Nice to the Nether­lands, an over­seas iron will be an un­for­get­table tri jour­ney. Here’s coach Der­mott Hayes with his tips on how you should plan for a Euro tri trip

220 Triathlon Magazine - - 2018 LONG-DISTANCE SPECIAL -

Tak­ing on any iron-dis­tance race

is of­ten de­scribed as go­ing on a jour­ney, but rac­ing abroad adds a dif­fer­ent and ex­cit­ing el­e­ment to the whole ex­pe­ri­ence. In the UK, we do iron-dis­tance races re­ally well, but trav­el­ling over­seas to race can open your eyes to how dif­fer­ent coun­tries see triathlon. Not many of us get into the sport think­ing it’ll dou­ble as a way to see the world, but with the sport be­ing so in­ter­na­tional, if bud­gets/fam­ily com­mit­ments etc. al­low, we should grasp the op­por­tu­nity with both hands.

Quite of­ten, choos­ing to tackle an iron-dis­tance race has to be a fam­ily de­ci­sion; it’s not just about you (the ath­lete), you need to con­sider your fam­ily as they go through this with you, so choos­ing a race where it adds the op­tion of a hol­i­day post-race is your way of say­ing thank you to them. Rac­ing abroad does throw up some lo­gis­ti­cal is­sues, such as how do you travel with your bike? Do you need spe­cific in­sur­ance? Are there dif­fer­ent rules to abide by? So choos­ing a race that’s easy to get to – and doesn’t add fur­ther pres­sure to you – makes sense.

Per­haps the big­gest ob­sta­cle is cost. Iron-dis­tance rac­ing is rarely cheap and rac­ing abroad even more so once you add in travel, ho­tels and the cur­rently woe­ful ex­change rate, so con­sider your bud­get be­fore hit­ting the ‘En­ter’ but­ton. Also, if you’re Bri­tish and don’t cope well with ex­treme heat or hu­mid­ity, then choos­ing a race with sim­i­lar weather con­di­tions could be im­por­tant. I’ve raced in Ger­many in 36°C tem­per­a­tures, so make sure you’re ready for any­thing. But our ex­pe­ri­ences abroad were worth ev­ery cent, so take the plunge and race abroad – you won’t re­gret it!

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