The long overdue Challenge Roth Race Report

I went to Germany 10 days before my first attempt at Challenge Roth to adjust to the jet lag and get to know the course. I was very fortunate to have a relaxing homestay, with Petra and Heiner as my hosts. I also got to cruise around in a Challenge Family car, making everything just that much easier.


The two best things about training in Germany were the pools and the breakfasts. There seems to be 50 meter public pools in every town. They were very inviting as most are in parks or surrounded by grass, and they were kept in pristine condition. As for breakfast, most mornings my Petra rode to the bakery bringing back fresh breads and croissants (see below)


As an added bonus I was in Germany for the final game of the World Cup. Which for me looked like this:


Since I had given myself plenty of time, race week was pretty relaxing and the weather was mild (until race day) so I did my typical taper with a few days of easy training leading into sunday.


Hours of Tour de France coverage 12
Hours in Ice Bath .5
Hours Training – Bike 5
Hours Training – Swim 3
Hours Training – Run 2
Hours of Foam Rolling 2
Bottles of Mineral Water 14
Number of Coffees Consumed 10
Testing it out Compressport Compression Sleeves
Pre Race Dinner Pasta and sweet potato
Pre Race Distraction Putting together playlist for the run (see further down)


Everyone’s talked about how incredible the energy of this race is due to the amount of community support. This was apparent at the expo all the way through to the volunteer party the day after the race. It’s the type of race that’s hard to put to words, you just have to go do it.


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The highlight of the race for me was leading out onto the bike after a strong swim. I never felt amazing on the bike but managed to stay with the leaders through 120 kilometers. After losing nearly 4 minutes to the main group and coming off the bike in 9th, I was aggressive on the run and managed to move into 3rd place, passing Dirk Bockel at 24 kilometers. After having a bad patch I was repassed by Eneko Llanos but lifted again over the final 10 kilometers to finish fourth and within 30 seconds of third place.


After the race I received many questions, and was alerted to a slowtwitch forum (quite an entertaining read), asking about my use of headphones during the run.


At Challenge Family races headphones are allowed, but only on the run. Sage and I created a playlist of 2 hours 42 minutes, which was my goal time for the marathon. Check it out below (but not looking for feedback on my musical choices thank you)

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A big Thank you to Felix and his team at Challenge Family for looking after me so well, and once again setting the standard for triathlon races around the world.

Also, thank you to my amazing sponsors and to my California friends, Rob & Shelli for making the trip and their unwavering support (and photos).


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