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blenheim/london cycle route

Hi guys,

As a complete newcomer to tri i have been killing myself on the bike this last few months. Im averaging a couple of rides a week between 20 and 30 miles a time. I am now starting to feel a little stronger in the legs.

I have been riding round the country lanes in mid essex, without being mountinous, my routes are fairly hilly.

I was wondering what the cycle courses for the blenheim and london tri are like as these are the two tris i plan to do this year. Do i need to do more hill work or more flat stuff. Any advice would be appreciated.



  • Hi Andy

    I did both courses last year. Blenheim is a narrow track (about 12") that winds its way around the palace. You do 3 laps for the sprint distance and there are about 5 tight turns and numerous medium/gentle turns on each lap. The contours are not too bad - there is a 500m steady climb up from the lake and a couple of other rises, but nothing particularly steep. It's a difficult course to settle on as you're always changing gear or slowing for bends, so there's not much advantage to having aerobars (and also slow when overtaking - you struggle to get 3 bikes parallel so you sometimes have to wait to pass). It was also wet last year so you had to be pretty careful.

    London is a much faster, flatter, wider course. I did the Olympic distance up to the edge of the City (i.e. not the Westminster route). There are more hills than you'd expect because you are constantly going through underpasses or over bridges, all of which are up for 200m and then down for the same distance. It's dead straight (other than entering/exiting the Excel centre you only turn at the ends i.e. 4 times in 40km) so you can build up pretty good speeds, so it's a real course for using aerobars and just getting your head down.

    So, neither is a big hills course but other than that they're still almost opposites to each other. The country lanes will be perfect for Blenheim but you might want to find some flatter, straighter, wider routes to practice for London

    Hope this helps


  • BonusBBonusB Posts: 279
    Just to put Tri's post into perspective if anyone starts reading it like I did and gets the fear...

    The measurements provided are distances that you climb for rather than the height climbed! :D

    The London course is fast but the little ascents end up killing you as a result (being flat you'll push harder for longer, then get faced with a climb and your legs are gone).
  • oops - yes, I meant the horizontal distance that you climb for, not the vertical. The vertical is only a few metres (5 to 10?) at most, and that is always spread out over a couple of hundred metres.

    Bonus is also spot on with the tired legs on the uphills at London (made worse by last years heat - 32C) - because you can push up to top speed you really feel tired trying to maintain the momentum up the 20th bridge or underpass. But London is a good bike course for a very fast time; you just need to make sure that you have enough left in the locker for the run.

  • athoyleathoyle Posts: 21
    Thanks for the advice guys. Ensuring i have something left for the run is a bit of a problem at the moment as i feel very wobbly when getting off the bike at the moment.

    Im sure with a few more longer rides and some brike sessions i will improve.

    Thanks again

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