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World Duathlons and drafting

Wondered whether there were any thoughts from the UK contingent about how the drafting was in the recent World Duathlons in Aviles?

After speaking to many people from numerous countries at the event, it certainly seemed apparent that athletes from the countries whose racing is mostly non-drafting were considered somewhat of a liability !! Given that the UK was by far the biggest contingent it was frequently the UK athletes who were being mentioned, but there were others as well and it certainly seemed to split down the lines of what the normal racing practice at home was. Having said that it's not surprising as it takes time, confidence and understanding to be 'safe'

Personally I think it's a much better way of racing for a number of reasons, all to do with being fair:

  • drafting is always present in non-drafting races because it's impossible to police or even judge effectively on busy race courses
  • even when legal, you clearly get an advantage in a 'train' even when at the legal distance
  • because of the respective leg lengths of triathlons/duathlons, the bike leg is disproportionally long. Drafting 'equalises' the race somewhat
  • Given that some people will always try to cheat, removing need to police drafting takes away an easy way for people to be unscrupulous

I'd be interested to know perspectives on this generally (will more races in the UK become draft legal?) and also on specific thoughts/anecdotes from Aviles.

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