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North Downs Way Ultra 50M - 7:27:50 - 2nd
JUL 22
Cotswold Way National Trail 102M - 20:36:48 - trail record
Malvern Hills Ultra 52M - 7:49:49 - 1st record
Green Man Ultra 46M - 7:08:45 - 1st record


NOV 19
Brecon Beacons Ultra 46M - 6:29:05 - 2nd
OCT 22-23
Caesar's Camp 100 Mile Ultra - 20:32:30 - 1st
JUN 26
Worcester Sprint Traithlon - 1:19:36 - 2nd

MAR 27
Malvern Hills Ultra 54M (4000ft) - 8:09:00 - 1st
MAR 27
London Marathon - 2:50:36
MAR 27
Kingston Breakfast Run - 1:36:42 - 7th
Sri Chimnoy 10M - 57:38 - 4th



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Offas Dyke Experiment
1-2 September
178-mile non-stop trail run in <44-Hours
(DNF injury - 80 miles completed)
Report Here

16-28 August
190-Mile Camping Hike in 12 days
Report Here

The Pennine Way
25 August - 6 September
270-Mile Camping Hike in 12 days
Report Here

9-21 June
Lands End to John O'Groats Island Hopper (via Outter Hebrides) Unassisted Bike Ride
Report Part I Here
Report Part II Here
Info on Calmac Network/Scottish Islands
Gavin Robertson Thread

19 June to 2 July
Lands End to John O'Groats (to Inverness) Unassisted Bike Ride
Lands End to John O'Groats 2005 Report
Pre-Lejog prep
1. SJR Thread
2. SJR Thread II (Probs)
3. Ray Thread (Arrival)

UPDATE 12 JUN 2009
The paperback of my brother's third book, 'Blood Water' has been released.

Blood Water (paperback) on Amazon for £4.49
Dean's myspace webpage here

The hardback and paperbacks of 'Hunting Season' and 'Hand of the Devil' are still available:

Eight years ago, the Austrian emergency services were called to the scene of a bizarre car accident... two mangled bodies were found in the snow not far from the vehicle, clawed and chewed by a ferocious animal.....
Something unspeakable took Gerontius Moore’s parents from him, leaving him orphaned and alone. Now, that something, is back. Caught up in a terrifying hunt and finding help from an unlikely source, Gerontius must once more flee the clutches of an appalling beast, before it learns its business is unfinished. Full moon or not, the hunt is on.

'Better than Stephen King' ANDY McNAB

When young magazine journalist Ashley Reeves receives an intriguing letter, he leaves his London office in the hope of reporting on an unusual species of insect - the Ganges Red. That evening he arrives on Aries Island and encounters the writer of the letter - Reginald Mather. At first Mather seems no more than an eccentric collector, happy to live in isolation on the island. But when Reeves unearths the horrific truth, he finds himself thrown headlong into a macabre nightmare that quickly spirals out of control. His life is in danger ...and Mather is not his only enemy ...Both gruesome and compelling, chilling and page-turning, this much-anticipated thriller from Dean Vincent Carter will delight older readers.

'Sensational' DAILY EXPRESS
'Set to be [the] next big hit' INDEPENDENT ON SUNDAY
'The next Stephen King...' EVENING STANDARD
Last Blog Posts
Been a while
Base Training
Ironman UK, Enduroman

Total topics: 166
Total posts: 1656
Thu Aug 07, 2008 9:53 am Daz
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TIME : 24:52:00

    What a season. I'm really happy with the way things have gone this year. This race was the icing on the cake I guess. I was so pleased with the 9:20 at Ironman Austria. It left me excited for 2009. This was on my mind for the first week (of three) leading up to the Double.

    It wasn't a week of complete recovery. I popped down to the pool to do a little swimming at the end of the week, and even managed to get a 250m and 400m PB in. With just 2 weeks to the Double Ironman I had to make sure the itinerary was sorted with my crew, Ray and Matt (aka Rumbletum). Unfortunately RobT couldnt make it, but Im glad I still had Ray and Matt so they could get a little sleep during the night. The main two considerations were nutrition and the bike set-up. I only made a few tweaks to the bike (flipped the stem, changed the seat and tilted bars upwards). I had two shoe boxes full of nutrition; one with gels, bars and other standard ironman items, the other had higher fat/protein/cal items that I'd look forward to later in the race when I needed a change. A tub of salt, caffein pills and co-codamol made the final cut.

    Even though my speed and strength were returning, I was worried about my endurance. I'd gone absolutely flat out at Austria and still felt it in my core. I'd also picked up some kind of heel injury, and on the Sunday before the race I was struggling to walk let alone run. So decided on a full week of rest. Not a bad thing.

    I had no fear about the distances involved. They were just figures to me, 78-224-52, whatever! The distances were too silly so I just didn't think about them, simple as that. Id worry about it on the day.
    OK I'll admit now that I did have a race time in mind. I wasn't going to say so beforehand, particularly as I wasn't even close! I had been expecting / hoping for something like 2:00S/12:00B/8:00R. I worked out various scenarios and splits on paper and it seemed doable. What I didnt factor in was a) the ability (or lack of) to consume / digest nutrition during the race, and b) sheer exhaustion. I also thought that if I could get within 30mins of Hywel at Austria, then maybe I could get within an hour of him in the double. How wrong I was.

    I drove over to Esporta on Friday for the race briefing. Nice to meet some other (TT, RW) forumites including Crash Hamster, Rob, Towel+GF, ScottG, DaveM, TC, Monique, Rev Graham+Pinksally, RichG etc, as well as the organisors Steve and Eddy. I asked Steve when he was going to recce the Deca. I don't think he found that too funny.
    Stayed at Matt's overnight and up at 4:30am on race morning for my usual pre-race breaky of jam on toast and coffee. In hindsight this was my first error. I'd followed the breakfast-plan of a 'normal' race and NOT something that was going to take me 24hrs! I'd also only had a little dinner the night before. I should have kept topping myself up for a few more hours before the race.

    I reached the leisure centre around 6:30am to set-up a tent in the athlete village/transition point. Ray arrived at 7am and Matt a little later. We watched some of the first wave/chilled, and then ran through the race plan. Basically we agreed that I'd let them know a lap in advance what I required, so they had plenty of time to find/prepare it.

7.8KM SWIM = ~2:05:00

    At 9am we headed back poolside to watch the end of swim wave1. Stomach started making noises at this point so I downed another energy bar. This was a sign I'd not loaded-up enough beforehand, but a bit too late to get stuck into more food. The Slackos and ScottG (crewing for Putt Putt) were also with us just before the off. Was great having friends around to relieve the tension. Joined Hywel Davies, Martin Smith and Paul Bennett in Lane 1 with a few mins to spare. I decided, along with a few others, to risk wearing a wetsuit. I preferred suffering a little heat for a quicker split.

    At the gun I tucked into third. We were all going a fair speed to start with and I hit 1500m in 22:22 (a PB by 30secs). This was a little faster than I expected and I was on the limit, but I was happy to keep it going. At 80 lengths I decided to take a short break to get some liquid down. It hit me just how warm it was in there and I had to get some water down the wetsuit and on the face to try and keep myself cool. Generally kept the breaks to a minimum from that point on and just for 1min max. Towel was already a few laps ahead, swimming at a similar pace but without the breaks. Martin was having trouble with cramps and Paul must have had his feet tapped every other length by the rest of us. He was the perfect gent and would always leave room to let us pass.

    At 280/304 lengths I started to feel the onset of cramp. I was pleased to have gone so far without this problem but what difference would it have made if I messed up my calves before even starting the bike. I grounded halfway down the length, and walked in. Decided to have a bit of a stretch, finish off the liquid and then ease myself back into it. From that point I gently pushed off the walls to start with and dragged the legs. Luckily the stiff feeling eased off and I was able to pick-up pace again towards the end. I didn't take any splits on the watch until completion of the first lap of the bike, but I'm pretty sure my swim split was 2:05 (3rd fastest).

    Climbing out of the pool was easy. Removing the wetsuit wasn't. I didnt want to risk a quick kick-removal and tumble into the pool, so with Matt's help I did it the conventional way. Light jog to transition, and Ray was on hand to help me get my cycling gear on. A relaxed 5mins spent in transition, and then out on to the longest bike I have ever done that would see me into the night...

    Preparing for the swim
    Bottom R : Mrs Slacko and my Crew (Ray and Matt)

    1-2-3-4-7-er-5-7-8. Dam!

224 MILE BIKE = 13:44:45
16 x 14 MILE LAPS
    Before the race I was actually looking forward to both the swim and the start of the bike. I really wanted to put my foot down and see how long I could keep it going. Unfortunately it wasn't as long as I'd have hoped and the first few laps were very painful. It started with a tremendous headache which I thought was from the swim. As it developed I tried loosening the helmet. This seemed to do the trick, so maybe it was a tight helmet afterall.

    I noticed Towel and the Relay Team cyclist were bombing along about 2mins/lap quicker than me and half a lap ahead. That was about the amount of time I was happy to give away, and I thought the 20-21mph moving average would be sustainable. Hanno and Gary Foord were behind me after the swim and I wanted to keep it that way for as long as possible. It was a little windy for my 82/101 wheel combination but most of it was full head or tail with odd shot from the side (which I became friendlier with each lap).

    Laps 1-3 were all on 43:00 and included a little time-out with Ray and Matt to replace nutrition. Lap 4 was 45:00 and Lap 5 (70Miles) 48:00. During these laps I'd been experiencing a fair amount of pain and stiffness in the neck, shoulders (from the swim), lower back and knees (from the bike). My stomach was also starting to hurt and make noises, no doubt because Id only been feeding it liquid to this point. As others have also said, I was finding it very difficult to stomach solid foods. Nibbling on an energy bar just made me want to retch. So on the return of Lap 5, having already seen one of the runnersworld athletes DNF, I felt miserable. I knew I was slowing dramatically and really wanted to quit the race. All sorts of thoughts were going through my head. What do I say to Matt and Ray? These guys had given up their weekend to crew ME. I felt like I was letting them down. What would other people think, and would I be able to forgive myself? There's a code amongst triathletes, we all know it. You don't pull out of a race unless you REALLY have to on medical grounds. I've known others complete races with broken bones for gods sake! And yet, this race is not your everyday triathlon. What would a Double-Ironman do to me if I forced myself through it? So at transition I climbed off the bike, rested it ceremoniously against the fence, walked over to Matt and Ray and just said... "I think I'm going to pull-out". I don't think they were expecting that comment. And this is where a crew is invaluble, because without them I would have DNF'd there and then. A few words were exchanged (amongst my moans), and I still remember Ray's words "Daz, you said you were happy to end the season after Austria right? Then what are you trying to prove? This is all about completing a double and getting around in one piece". They were both right. ScottG and Steve Haywood popped over and also encouraged me to do one more lap and see how I felt. I'd heard that line used so many times before, and now it was my turn. Just one more 14miler...FFS!

    So laps 6 and 7 were a struggle. I went straight out on to Lap 8 and hit it hard (45mins) knowing that I'd made halfway, 112 miles and would treat myself to a nice break with the guys afterwards. I'd asked the guys to prepare the 50mm front tubular at this point. And during a 10min break we swapped the wheels over (I may have also changed from aero to vented helmet and put some cycle shorts here too). I wanted to make life a little more comfortable on myself from now on.

    Start of the bike. Pain in various places. You can see it on my face.

    Took a break on most laps. Matt and Ray were always there with nutrition and equipment at the ready!

    After completing Lap 8 it was time to don the high visibility vest, head torch and switch on the front and back bike lights. The 14mile course was unlit apart from the two turn-arounds at HQ and Yoxall, and Kings Bromley. So 80% of the time we'd be cycling in complete darkness.

    On laps 9-11 there was still enough light to get some speed up, and I hit around 45mins (moving) for the lot. The pain had eased off thanks in part to a few pain-killers, and I was a lot happier with the race, and myself. I'd definitely passed the first bad patch. Of course, the stomach problems were still there, and I wasn't eating. At some point I knew I would have to address this and take a decent time-out to force-feed myself. But at the moment I just wanted to get through the bike as quickly as possible and have a nice long T2.

    The Slackos popped down to watch the event at one point and Ray came towards me with what looked like a large cardboard tray he'd designed in the form of a food platter. It had jelly babies, liquorich allsorts, pieces of energy bar, chips, pieces of battered sausage <double-take>. The Slackos had only given him some 'items' from the local chippy. I didn't want to be ungrateful so forced down a couple of pieces, then a couple more.

    The darkness on laps 12-16 slowed me right down. The small ToPeak front light died on the first lap. Luckily Matt had a spare, but the light they both produced was not enough to see the road ahead. The petzl head torch under the helmet, despite various efforts, just wouldnt aim in the right direction. The only way I could see anything at all was to sit upright and tilt the head back a little. A little neck ache and a big drop in speed (for my own safety) meant I lost 5-20mins/lap for the remainder of the race. I wasn't too bothered though. I was going to complete the distance even if it killed me.

    Couldn't wait to get my sorry arse off the saddle. It was now just before 2am. All I had on was a pair of shorts, tri top and high-vis vest. The cold hit me straight away and I started shaking. So I jumped into Ray's sleeping bag and sat next to the tent chatting to the guys. ScottG was good enough to give me some re-heated pasta left by Putt Putt. A few pieces of this and some warm coffee were enough to perk me up and after 10mins I decided it was time to hit the run. I was looking forward to running off-road in the dark....

52.4MILE RUN = 8:47:38
42 x 1.24 MILE LAPS
    Put on a long-sleeve HH, a bike jacket and headed out on the run. On leaving the centre, there's a short run uphill and a few steps taking you on to a trodden path through trees. It was pitch black so head lamps were essential. All stumps, routes had been marked by the organisors so the run involved a fair bit of dodging. Quite surreal and really enjoyed myself. At the turnaround Tom and Helen were taking numbers under the cover of a tiny light. They were very supportive.

    First 9 laps went smoothely with an average of 11:00/lap. My ankle injury was starting to annoy me so I tried to adapt my running slightly. I think most people were finding the going easier for the first few laps too.

    Top : Athletes village
    Bottom : Running through the night

    Laps 10-16 were getting progressively slower and I could now start to appreciate the walk/jog strategy athletes were adopting on uphill section coming back to the centre.

    Laps 17-24 were all around 11:00-16:00/lap with extended breaks to try and take on some nutrition. I was still struggling. However, there was light at the end of the tunnel....I squinted through my dry contact lenses and could just make out blonde hair? A bandana? Yes, the Slackos were back! And they brought goodies. Placed into my hand was something I would never eat normally. A McMuffin. Well I was McKnackered at that point, and needed the calories so decided to treat myself to a 10min break, which was about the amount of time I needed to digest the damn thing! But it worked. As the chart shows I was hitting a 10:00/lap moving average after that right up to the end of Lap 32 at 9am.

    At the beginning of Lap 33 I had what was to be the last of my extended breaks. My parents had arrived a couple of laps back just to add to the pressure and people were generally getting more vocal with their support for everyone. Runnersworld and Tritalk were particularly loud in numbers and we all appreciated it. Steve and Eddy were also around to give a few high fives and push people on.

    During this break the tritalkers told me I was in 5th place. I was quite shocked considering everything that had happened. I only had 10 laps to go now, I felt strong, my stomach was too busy contemplating the merits of fast food to bother me anymore, and I now had a race target again! I love a challenge.

    Laps 34-42 were all on a 9:00 moving average. I was starting to enjoy myself again. I'd already met and chatted to some great people during the race (some I already knew, some I didn't) and now I wanted to meet some of the legends. Caught up with Hanno 3 laps before he finished (in 2nd) and Dave Clamp a bit later. Both were interesting and friendly guys. Dave had done a triple ironman the week before (so that cancelled out any excuses I had of being tired from Ironman Austria) and had another crazy event the following week. How is that physically possible? Hanno was first to tell me that I was in contention for 3rd and that I should check with the lap counters over my current position. I'd not considered this before so on Lap 34 I flew through the trees to the lap counter. He told me there were two guys 2 laps ahead BUT didnt know which wave they were in. I presumed they were in my wave as that's what the tritalk guys told me. But I was enjoying my new found speed so plugged on.

    Tritalk massive : ScottG, Poet, Slacko, Ray

    Top L : Eating a McMuffin
    Bottom LR : Back up to speed and feeling good

    Laps 38-40 were the fastest splits of the lot, with Lap 39 a sub9 moving time. Really enjoyed the last few laps. Told Toyota Crown he was within a lap of me which made him go extra hard to catch up. I knew he would, he's so competitive and wants to beat me. I was actually 3 laps ahead but it kept me entertained. Putt Putt was looking good but I had to turn my head away when I'd seen what his crew had done to him with a bottle of sun cream. The second marathon was 35mins quicker then the first so I was flying.

    Another soppy admission here - when I ran towards the centre for the last time, to the cheers from the crowd, I had a bit of a lump in my throat. It had been the toughest race and experience of my life. It seemed like so much had happened and now it was finally over. Was I emotional because of the achievement, or because I'd not given up, or both. I don't know. Steve was waiting at the finish line, with friends and family behind. He gave me my medal, a small glass trophy and envelope. Hello...what's that? He congratulated me on finishing 3rd! Apparently the guy I'd been trying (but failing) to catch for the last 90mins was actually in the first wave and had stated 4hrs before me I was really chuffed to have made a podium in the first UK Double Ironman

    Finally crossing the finish line. ScottG indicating 3rd (I didn't know)


    I'd loved to have hung around and watched others finish but no sooner had I crossed the line, thanked friends and had a shower, than the adrenalin dropped and suddenly felt very ill. The stomach pains returned and I had to rush back to the centre to be sick. On the way I passed Neil Kapoor (and OH) who'd done a storming run and was just 1 lap behind me in the end. Nice couple but I had to excuse myself. I was rough when I retruned from the centre. Picked the bike up with Ray and headed out. I couldnt believe how friendly people were, I was congratulated by everyone I passed all the way back to the car. Sick again roadside on the way back but nursed myself with electrolytes.

    Kept the SKINS tights on Mon-Tue to encourage blood flow. The legs were fine but the ankle was throbbing and a few of my toes didnt look good. The left big toe was especially bad. I couldn't bend it and it was swollen with the nail slowly dettaching itself. Visited the GP on Wed and was told I'd probably lose two nails, keep an eye on left big toe and also take a clipping sample of big toe of right foot as it 'may' be infected. And I used to have a great pair of feet. At this rate in ten years I'll just have a pair of stumps.

    My season is effectively over. It's been a great year for me and 2009 has a lot to live up to. I can now get back to working on the business and doing some spectating. I'm gagging to start training again, harder and longer than before of course. Would I do another double? Of course, I have unresolved issues!

Likeys 9Bar Bike Science Eladon

~   Last edited by Daz on Sat Aug 09, 2008 5:08 am; edited 5 times in total
Thu Aug 07, 2008 10:19 am Redraj
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You're a legend mate and an inspiration. Can't get my head around the distances, or the mental strength all of you double ironmen clearly have. Well done and rest strong. Rich
Thu Aug 07, 2008 10:25 am Carl J
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How did you manage to not worry about the distances b4 hand??!! Amazing! And to take that low point on the chin, fight it off with >100m left on the bike and the 52m run - phew - ey! Took some sorta balls.


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Time - 8:58 (Challenge Roth 2009)
Position - 19th/4th (IMUK 2010)
Swim split - 0:56 (IMUK 2010)
Bike split - 4:46 (Challenge Roth 2009)
Run split - 3:08 (Challenge Roth 2009)

Ultra wins - 3
Triathlon wins - 1 Med
Duathlon wins - 1 Sprint
All about Daz

Joined: 15 May 2003
Location: Hampton, London
Website: Visit poster's website
Occupation: Elite Endurance Athlete (Triathlon, Ultra Trail Running), Coach, Personal Trainer and Consultant
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