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About harmer56

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    Transitions Addict in Progress

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  • Year of first Tri race?
  1. It was probably going to get more this year given that Xterra Australia doesn't appear to be happening. Either way, seems a bit odd to clash them unless there was no alternative.
  2. Venue aside, the date now clashes with the TA National Xtri championships in the Snowy Mountains. That will hurt both events. There is hopefully a very good reason why the date clash couldn't be avoided, rather than just a stupid oversight given that TA and TriNSW share an office.
  3. Strange move. I get that Forster wasn't particularly convenient for clubs South of Sydney, but given the number of competitors the clubs on the Central/Mid/North Coast provided it seems crazy to put it in a location that will mean a 7 hr drive for anyone north of Newcastle. If the aim was to engage more clubs surely a location around Wollongong would have been more appropriate....convenient for clubs on the South Coast, inland and Greater Sydney, and not a ridiculously long drive for people North of Sydney. I'm from a Sydney based club so the distance isn't really any different to us, but it seems like a bit of a slap in the face for the big clubs North of Sydney that have always provided a ton of competitors and volunteers. EDIT: It appears that TriNSW may have only been notified very recently by Forster Council that the event couldn't go ahead.
  4. NSW Club championships

    Yeah it was a bit hairy in the early waves when people were taking the downhill way too quickly and running wide onto the wrong side of the path!! Thankfully no traffic coming the other way yet at that stage. A few strategically places witches hats did the trick of slowing people down in the end.
  5. NSW Club championships

    It was a great effort from Cronulla, and a well-deserved victory! Can't complain about coming second to competition like that! Overall, another great weekend with club members and opposing competitors! RE bike handling skills, I was marshalling that tight left-hander as you turned from the asphalt path onto the back lane before the run back into transition. There was some interesting manoeuvres going on! By far the biggest problem was certain "over-excited" people (I'll generalise here and say the majority were males in the 30-34 and 35-39 age groups).....two seconds is too long to wait for a less-confident competitor to negotiate the corner when you can overtake on the wrong side of the path then continue to overtake through the apex of the corner....not cool!!
  6. We have sent an email to Phil and Sarah from TriNSW, cc'd to the TA CEO and the National Membership and Participation Manager. I won't post what they've sent back to us so far, but needless to say we are still awaiting a satisfactory response to our concerns. The email that Sarah sent to club Presidents last night just made the situation worse as it essentially dismissed the issues raised by other clubs already. I'd suggest they have probably been smashed by nearly every club in the past few days.
  7. Yep, completely ridiculous and so bloody frustrating. If this was the first time this had happened, you could maybe cop it on the chin, but it is the third year in a row that TA/TriNSW have implemented major changes with no consultation and a ridiculously short amount of notice. Even if you put aside the debacle with the 5% fee, the changes to the membership systems have huge implications for clubs and how they manage their membership database, run events etc. The email sent by TriNSW to club presidents last night, attempting to allay the concerns that have obviously been raised by a number of clubs, still failed to even acknowledge the problems that they are introducing and the fundamental lack of respect towards the clubs which they are supposed to represent. They've tried to blame the lack of consultation on TA committing to offering an Early Bird membership starting on April 1, however that doesn't cut it. If the system wasn't ready it should have just been held over for another year. Either the system has been ready for a while and they only just organised training in the last week, reflecting an incredibly poor level of planning, or the system wasn't ready until now and is being inappropriately rushed out at the last minute. Either way, it reflects very poorly on the offices of TriNSW and TA. The lack of consultation and support is even more frustrating given the introduction of compulsory membership. They essentially left clubs to "sell" their compulsory membership model with little to no support over the past year. The clubs have gained absolutely no benefit from this, and in many cases (ours included) clubs have suffered financially as a result of lower membership numbers. It wouldn't be unreasonable to expect them to have lifted their game after the introduction of compulsory membership.
  8. I can confirm that this is the plan. TriNSW have informed clubs that they are no longer going to be absorbing the 5% Active fee and will pass it onto members. They are also implementing significant changes to the membership registration system and just presumed that the clubs would be fine to drop all the work they've done on the past year making RegOnline work for them and jump onto this new system. The best bit? The first any of the club committees knew about all this was when we were sent an email last Wednesday night announcing training sessions for a system that was going live on the 1st of April!!!!! Yes, less than seven days notice. Needless to say TriNSW and TA are copping a fair amount of heat from many clubs, ours included. It's just another example of absolutely zero consultation with their largest stakeholders and a severe lack of understanding of the time and effort that goes into running the clubs.
  9. That has been a big factor in my decision to do less LC triathlons in the past 2 years. Gave some thought to doing 70.3 Western Sydney to get me back into it. That'll cost $345 for the entry plus a bit more for the other bits and bobs, so say $400. For that amount I can do all five 7hr races in the Singletrack Mind MTB Enduro series (35hrs of racing). Don't get me wrong, 70.3's are a heap of fun, but it's getting increasingly harder to justify that amount of money for a 5hr race.
  10. Riding on the road - is it worth it

    As I said in an earlier post, I love nothing more than getting out on the road for a long ride, but there are those moments when you question whether it is worth it. On Saturday we rode from the Northern Beaches, through Bobbin Head and headed North until we reached the Roadwarriors cafe. 99% of the ride was awesome, the few cars that we encountered we courteous and patient (you usually only come across a few motorbikes on that route anyway), beautiful road, no traffic lights for well over 80km. And then you get that 1% when you start heading back into civilisation that makes you wonder why their parents didn't opt for the morning-after pill. Heading back through St Ives, in the left of three lanes, hardly any traffic, a car with four heroes in it pulled across two lanes to sit in behind us and then passed ridiculously closely at speed with the passenger hanging out the window giving us a mouthful. One of those moments when I would have happily forked out a couple of hundred $$$ to have an unmarked highway car appear. Its one thing to have a car get a bit antsy when they're being held up by cyclists, but I'll never understand the thought process that leads them to deliberately go out of their way to harass and endanger another human being who was having absolutely zero impact on their day. In the end we carried on our way (I think the hit of adrenalin made for a strong ride home!), happy to have enjoyed an awesome ride with my mates and knowing that no matter what we do in life, there will always be bigger pieces of s*&t out there than us
  11. ID - Carry it with you

    At the entrance to the National Park on McCaars Ck rd this morning? We rode past as the ambo pulled up, presumed it must have been a group riding because a few had already stopped and were rendering assistance. Well done for stopping and securing the scene, someone thinking clearly had parked a big 4WD on the road to protect those on the road. Looked nasty. It was a strange place for a big fall, but you could certainly be right with the local wildlife.....plenty of it around at that time of the morning. Hope she makes a quick recovery!
  12. Riding on the road - is it worth it

    I love nothing more than getting out for a ride on the road. Yes there are risks, but as other have said there is a lot you can do to reduce the risk. Lights at all times, and just having good road sense are critically important. Too many cyclists/triathletes ride stupid routes at stupid times. Akuna and West Head are relatively safe at most times of the day, but I cringe when I see people heading out for a ride to Palm Beach (or for that matter many other places on the Northern Beaches) at 7 or 8 a.m. If you're still out on the road at 10 a.m. on a weekend you're just asking for trouble......parents getting kids to sport, shoppers etc. Plus there's something nice about starting a ride at 5 a.m., getting 120km done and be home before 9 a.m. to enjoy the rest of the weekend. The same goes for rides heading up to Pie in the Sky etc.....5 a.m. start at the latest, the Pacific Highway is not a pleasant place after about 8 a.m! Don't even get me started on people who ride on the side of motorways. Every heard of object fixation? At 110km/hr there is no second chance! The scary thing is that lots of cyclists/triathletes don't even realise how dangerous their riding habits are (I agree, wearing headphones whilst riding is completely bloody ridiculous!).
  13. Which mountain bike?

    Still making 29ers, in addition to a full range of 27.5ers http://www.giant-bicycles.com/en-au/bike-finder/everyone/offroad/?level=all
  14. Which mountain bike?

    Bang-for-your-buck, I reckon you can't go past a Giant 29er. I ride an Anthem X2, love it, handles everything I ask it to do. It's a dually, and my back certainly appreciates the rear shock after a 70km ride on dirt! If you're just riding groomed paths/firetrails, a hardtail like an XTC Composite would more than do the trick, or on the more budget end of the scale a Talon 29er would be perfect if you want to leave it overseas.
  15. Sporting Event Timing System

    Our club purchased a timing system in the last few months from RFID. The system with waterproof multisport timing chips for 150 competitors, laptop and other assorted necessities set us back about $12k. We ended up going with the Ultra4, which is perfect for what we need (individual leg splits) for our duathlons and triathlons. We also use it for bike TT's, with it set up to detect the rider when they roll over the start line, pick them up when they cross the finish and then spit out a net time and position.....so much easier than the way we used to do it manually in Excel!!! I agree with the others who have said it takes a significant time investment to learn the program and how to set up events properly, but once you've done it the first time for an event you can just duplicate it after that. I'd suggest that you train up a group of people to use the system so that you don't get forever stuck as the "timing guy" and never get to actually race yourself . Depending on how much time, money and effort you want to invest, you can do everything from a very simple start/finish timing setup to something a bit more advanced with commentator displays, live-to-web results etc. Data entry is easy for us, we do all our race entries on Active.com so we can just export an entry list and then import it straight into RaceTec and ask it to assign chip numbers automatically. This functionality isn't limited to Active, as long as you can get your race entry list into Excel you can export it to RaceTec. All-in-all, yes it is a significant investment of money and time (initially), but if you have the membership base and number of race entries to support it I'd suggest giving it some serious thought. The biggest advantage for us has been the freeing up of manpower (something which is always at a premium in a volunteer environment)! Whereas we used to have one person doing the manual timing and two people writing down numbers as backups, we now just have one person sitting at a computer making sure it picks up each person as they go through and manually punching in their number if the mat misses them for some reason. Post race it is just a quick check for any obvious discrepancies and then the results are ready for publication.