Anyone out there going to the New Forest this weekend or has done it before?  How "undulating" is the bike?

Any ideas on surface??

I feel woefully undertrained having not biked over 100k and not swum over 2 k in training (though x2 IM races in past the last was April 2012). (should i down shift to the 70.3 distance if I can??).  Am pretty running fit if a bit heavier than i would like my race weight to be. 

Also trying to decide between QR TT bike which I have ridden twice in the last year, once for 100k last Friday and oh my butt did hurt by the end, and my comfy but slower road bike (TCR2).  The TT bike is sooooo fast on long flats but the TCR2 is better at climbing and wont hurt so much (but will be slower)... 

tips gratefully received



  • Train properly in future

  • how do you get a pirate stamp next to your name ha ha ??

  • TRTR ✭✭✭

    There are no big hills in the New Forest, I've done a few of their different races. Its more undualtions. TT bike will be fine. Watch out for ponies, pigs, donkeys and cows wandering onto the roads. The organisers are very encouraging you will have a great day out, racing in the New Forest is a privilege.

  • Laura - I am heading down for the long distance Forestman, and have been down earlier this year to recce the bike and run courses.
    The bike is undulating rather than hilly - but I would imagine by the third lap some of those undulations feel a bit more than they really are. A few decent flat sections - but the biggest heads west (which is due to be straight into a headwind if the forecasts are right!). The thread on Tr*T@#k (sorry - didn't mean to swear) suggests that flint washed off the plains is a real problem after rain and punctures a plenty from last years race reports... Most of the actual surface is ok though.

    The run is the real killer - so if you think you may feel flat after the bike then I wouldn't fancy that trail marathon. The standalone mara they organise on the same course is called 'The Heartbreak' marathon - you can see quite a long way and those ups and definately up!

    Having said that - I'm really looking forward to it (between bouts of wibbling nerves) and packing today to head down to my parents to stop off on the way down, then arrive in New Forest Friday. The organisers sound great, and have answered my various questions quickly, so I think the great reports I've heard should be lived up to.

    Waffle over... race head on... lets doooooo it!

  • Thanks for the helpful and constructive comments..  

    Its *only* the 22k run I am doing and having done marlborough 50k earlier in the year i feel ok about the run, and about walking up any nasty inclines.  But warning taken and heeded thanks. 

    Must triharder good luck on the long course!  what thread do you refer to??  

    Flints!  Will you carry a spare tyre as well as tubes in case of shredding a tyre????  I dont usually.... 

    I am leaning towards the TT bike and just deal with the pain - !  

    I have heard great things too and am hoping for a friendly and lovely race - agree its a privilege to be in the newf, gorgeous spot!  

    see you thereimage


  • I won't be carrying a tyre - just spare tubes and gas. When I visited for my recce weekend the organisers just advised that if I did puncture, carefully check the inside of the tyre for signs of flint and remove any.

    The other gear tip from the aforementioned forum was to use GP4000S's - but obviously no tyre is puncture-proof. I already use these, ridden the bike course without incident, and so happy to keep using 'em!

    Right then... TRIPETALK LINK

  • Ive been looking into this race for next year and everything ive seen/read so far has been pretty positive image apparently the winner stopped off to cool down in a stream last year!

    Good luck, you'll have to let us know how it goes!

  • TRTR ✭✭✭

    how did you all get on ?

  • I had a fantastic weekend - the organisers were fantastic and both me and my family felt well informed and welcome here in the New Forest.

    I will get around to a race report - but am enjoying some R&R with the rest of the guys for the next few days (I owe them some time now!!!) so after a day building sandcastles and skimming stones on the beach yesterday, more tearing around after them today. Who needs sports massage, best way to ease the sore muscles I reckon?

  • Yeah, agree it's a great race.  Small but perfectly formed.  Total for all three distances, (70.3 'middle' distance, boskman (2.6k swim 120k bike and 22 k run) and full IM distance) was about 250 competitors.  Very friendly, immaculately well organised and a beautiful course.  Extremely well signed bike course - no need to carry a map - with just enough aid stations.  Although it got so lonely at one point on the second bike loop and I hadnt seen anyone else in ages I wondered if I had gone wrong and was just starting to worry when a lead forestman racer came whizzing past in aero helmet and i 'followed' him!

    It was a bit windy but manageable (just adds to the challenge;) ) - and the off road run is quite up and down.  

    Still, did better than I had feared on my times, I didnt die or bonk, and even won my age group, 4th woman overall, although I am keeping it a secret that there were only 4 women in my age group and 9 overall!  

    I am very envious of musttriharder's time off - i was straight back to work the next day which was a bit much really tho !

    Anyway, recommended - it's a great race. 


  • are entries open for 2014?

  • Budjude wrote (see)

    are entries open for 2014?

    Not yet - the organisers are off on a 'jollie' of their own...

  • My race report... 7 days on!

    PreparationNo excuses - my training for the last 30 weeks following mostly the Fink Intermediate plan was spot on. Can't complain at all - with some careful planning, my other half and two young kids (2yrs and 3 1/2yrs) manged the time off without too much hassle. Helped by both of us having stopped our full time jobs (gulp!) for other life-changing reasons, we muddled through fitting in training, part-time work, nursery runs, kids swimming etc and survived... It is true what they say - you need to be honest, talk to everyone, and get it planned week at a time.

    AimsBefore picking an event, I had a 12.5hr time in mind. I figured a 1hr20 swim, 6hr40 bike and 4hr 30 run. I have always been quick through transition so just figured these would be included somewhere. I might live to reconsider that - but more later!

    The EventThis was only picked really as my other half wanted all my training out of the way in the winter/spring to leave the summer free for time with the kids etc and some 'normal holiday' time. Therefore the earliest that was deemed feasible was the Forestman. A quick scan through the previous years results made my time splits appear silly - a top 30 finish (something I am not in the league for...) and a major worry about the run splits of the majority of the field most years!

  • Swim
    The start (with only 120-130 competitors) was straightforward and no major hurly-burly. I settled into my own rythym quickly and just tried to let the chaos go on ahead of me. This worked well, and my first lap of three in 24-25min was bang on effort-wise. I kept this pace for the second lap, but had a burst of faster swimming to get alongside two others  who seemed to be going just a fraction quicker than me. This worked, and two of us kept together for the majority of lap 2 and 3. With about 500m to go I decided to pick a few people off as I was swimming well, and was happy to pass others and come out of the water in around 1hr 16 (ahead of schedule!). There was no mat before the T1 tent, so no time split until leaving T1.

    This was the area I woried about most, but had done lots of miles. I kept to pace for the first (and longest lap) about 73km and was drinking and eating well. The main issue at this point was last weekends nasty winds. Forecast was for 20-25mph winds with stronger gusts up to 35mph. The main exposed section (which unfortunately was the best, flattest piece  of tarmac) was about 15km straight into this at the end of each lap... 3 times! I managed fine even second time around, but by lap 3 the times started slowing down and I rode into T2 at 6hr 50 (10mins down...) Still could make this up on the run...

  • Run
    Having never swum  the full distance until today, or rode the full distance, I was now in the realm of the unknown again having never run a marathon. The first 2km are on tarmac, then onto the trails and into the New Forest. A killer. I had run on the route once in training so knew what to expect - I knew where I would be walking on each lap, but there were some areas for decent running to occur. The first 10km in 60min, happy! But another 3-4km and the wheels came off (for the first, but not the last time!). The start of what others have described as the IM shuffle! I get it now!

    The lasting impression for me will be the cameraderie - other runners sharing the same experience, just at different times. I got 'low' when others around me appeared to be racing off, only to discover me passing them 30mins later when I was 'in the zone' again. Moods were on/off, up/down, high/low but the feed stations kept you going along (about every 2.5km). Immensely humbling experience.

    Slowly the average pace on the Garmin drops, you try and work out whether 4hr45 is still on, then sub-5h. I think my last 7km was probably the fastest 7km in the last half of the run - I hit a good spell right at the end to run back home strongly and finish well. Run time 5hr 09.

    My time was 13hr 31sec which was alittle disappointing on the surface. But I made my first IM distance event and was running well at the end, and still smiling! I loved it! The swim was great, the bike better than I thought (I could have ridden further) but the run disintegrated sooner than I expected.

    The comments of others around me were the wind had taken more out of people (particularly first-timers) than you realised, and I think this is probably reflected in my good pace for 5-6hrs then getting unhinged despite feeling ok-ish.

    The run is particularly demolarising if you can't pick things up to get back on pace - a very difficult thing to do in the third discipline of the day.

    The organisation of the whole weekend was superb - I felt very well looked after. I loved this event - and am very happy it is as low-key as it is. I would love to do more long-distance races, but think that the time I had to train this year may not be possible to get again until both my kids are at school in a couple of years. These memories will last me until I can get a good training run again, but I would definately cut the training from 30 weeks to 24 say?

    Until then I think it is back to 70.3 races for me - much easier to fit the volume of training into my life image

  • the run does sound a bit brutal - i would be delighted with that sort of time mate

  • That wasn't you at rectory farm Saturday was it, musttriharder ?


  • laura watson 10 wrote (see)

    That wasn't you at rectory farm Saturday was it, musttriharder ?


    ??? Assume it wasn't me as not sure what you mean! Saturday of race weekend I was mostly stuffing my face at the race breifing, and then back to the cottage we rented for the weekend (abou 1/2 mile along the main road from Sandy Balls, down the hill on the bike course).

    This Saturday I was travelling home via my parents in Gloucester - what a rock n roll life...

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