Expedition Wise Ltd specialises in organising challenges, pre-expedition training weekends, first aid training, event medical cover, consultancy and support for individuals and charities. We will organise your challenge or expedition from start to finish. Our training courses include Low to Mid Altitude Trekking Training weekends, High Altitude Trekking Training weekends, Basic Navigation Training weekends and Advanced Navigation Training weekends.
The weekend of 22nd September saw a group of intrepid athletes take on our latest challenge - The Brutal. The name of the challenge gives a hint as to the nature of the challenge; a long distance triathlon set in the heart of Llanberis in North Wales. Here follows one of our challenger's race Report!
Dave Parker - Double Ironman
The alarm sounds, it’s 5.30 and freezing! That’s ok; I’ve
planned for it, extra thick suit with vest, surf hat and thick gloves. Don’t
worry about it making me slow, I only want to avoid the cut off. Down to the
water, quick chat with some other competitors, cuddle from the boss and we’re
What a beautiful place to swim, mist rolling on the water
and mountains for backdrop. Start as I mean to go on, nice and steady, control
the breathing and concentrate on the stroke. There’s a group going my speed, green
hats, doing the full, find some feet to follow and settle in. First lap seems
to fly by, out of the water for a quick drink of tea but don’t want to lose my
pals so straight back to work. We’re starting to spread out now so just do my
own thing on the return leg, might as well get used to it. Out again for tea,
what a great Idea, why don’t they have it at all races? There’s nobody anywhere
near now but that’s OK I’m still on target, only two and a half miles to go.
Feel like royalty on last laps, two lovely canoeists for company and not a
ripple on the water, sun getting warm and I’m doing the Double!
Glad that’s done, the cut off was always going to be close
for me but I’m ten minutes up on schedule as I go into transition. I couldn’t
get a seat in the bloody tent at 6.30 now it’s deserted. Take my time getting
ready, full cycling kit as planned, with a nice thick jacket for the first lap
so I can warm up. Pockets full of flapjack, a pasty to eat on the way and off
we go, 11am and I’m 10 minutes up. 225 miles and 16500 feet of climbing to go,
that’s OK, I’ve planned for it. No tri bars, just twiddle along, enjoy the
scenery and eat. First lap just ease into the rhythm, see how the legs feel
after my long taper and prepare for the day ahead.
First lap feels ridiculously easy, but I’ve got a plan and
I’m going to stick to it, so into the transition lay-by for my Bacon and Egg
butty and a mug of tea! Two laps straight through now, same tempo, have given
myself 2.15 per lap during daylight and I’m cruising. Get some great company on
each lap from Jeff and then Richard who are interested in what’s going on and
happy to go at my slow pace for a chat. Have to call in at ground control
before 4th lap to fill up with flapjack and grab a sausage roll,
happy to see my supportteam has shown
up (my kids and their partners), just one more lap before tea.
Halfway there, 7.20pm, eating a lovely curry while my bike
gets its lights put on. Dark is closing in and the temperature is dropping
quickly, that’s OK I’ve planned for it. On with all my winter clothes and off
with all four of my support in the car, leaving the boss for a well earned
rest, after she’s washed up. The plan was for them to alternate cars with two
in each so they got a rest, but they’re having so much fun that they all spend
the whole night with me! After a bit of practice we fall into a routine of them
waiting 15 minutes, passing me to pull in at earliest point giving a silent
cheer as I go past and repeat. I have given myself 2.30 during the night and it
flows by without a problem, plus after midnight I start to catch and pass
people, I have no Idea what position I’m in. Finish bike at 0540, twenty
minutes up on schedule and fresh as a daisy, practicing riding through the
night has really paid off.
Grab some cereal and coffee then off for the run, this is
where I find out if the training has worked. Get two laps done before we have
to go up Snowdon and it’s not as bad as I expected, actually making up time,
meanwhile my poor lad has to get up after only a couple of hours to go with me.
I walk the whole way up as planned, eating as many pasties, chocolate bars and
flapjack as I can manage. Then walk and jog down, meeting a few mates on way
who have come between nights to support, it gives me a real boost.
Bacon and eggs for breakfast, a very steady lap with my pal
to get my legs back, then it’s in with the earphones and down to work. Start to
pound out the distance, have a break at the feed station with the best two
helpers in the world ever, still don’t know their names, and feel the miles
pass. Don’t know what has happened but have moved up to second and I’m flying!
Force out a fast seventh lap just because I want to, then a cruise to the
finish trying to thank as many people as possible. Can’t believe I’ve done it!!
Just over 36 hours and nearly 5 in front of schedule, nearly all made up on the
run. Not bad for an old lad. Thanks Claire, Brian and all at Brutal. The rest
of you know who you are.