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IM Maastricht or Switzerland 2018?

 
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doddydodd




Joined: 12 Feb 2016
Posts: 23
Location: Essex

PostPosted: Thu Aug 03, 2017 12:08 am    Post subject: IM Maastricht or Switzerland 2018? Reply with quote

Hi All,

I'm torn between the 2 for 2018 and didn't know if anyone had done either or both for that matter and could give their opinions of which gave the best race experience.

Thank you
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doddydodd




Joined: 12 Feb 2016
Posts: 23
Location: Essex

PostPosted: Tue Aug 08, 2017 2:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Anyone?
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JeffB




Joined: 04 May 2008
Posts: 1023
Location: Middlesbrough

PostPosted: Tue Aug 08, 2017 5:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I did Maastricht the first year it was on and actually thought it was a good event, not a huge field so less drafting.

Swim is probably as easy as you'll get in the river, you even get a bit of flow on the way back, very straight.

They've changed the bike every year I think and had issues with it, it went over cobbles a few times (in town) and the year it was wet apparently it was treacherous but I think they improved it this year (Frankfurt also has cobbles).

Run was round the town, again changed a bit, but probably still similar and flat and had a got atmosphere when I was there.

It was also a really nice place, and depending on where you live pretty easy to get to, just off the ferry. I got a ferry from Hull to Rotterdam and it was only about a 2 hour drive.

I've not done Zurich, although I did the 70.3 a couple of years ago, Zurich is also a nice place (expensive though), I'd expect it is a decent race.

Jeff
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holster




Joined: 15 Sep 2014
Posts: 38

PostPosted: Tue Aug 08, 2017 6:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Did Maastricht this year. Brief summary:

Logistics:
-Parking for registration / event: Spot on. On Friday, car park right under the transition zone which holds 300 cars or another one (300 cars) 5 mins away. 13 euros for the day. On Sunday, got to car park at 4.30am (transition opened at 5)...again, loads of space.
-One transition location
-Location and finish line all within 5 min walk
-Close to Calais and easy to get to
-After finishing race and meeting family, were back in car within 15 mins

Swim:
-Very easy sighting
-Up swim against current for 1.6km, slight aussie exit and then swim back and loop round
-A few weeds coming up to half way, nothing massively bad / restrictive
-Wide lanes (as it were). Probably 20-30m in sections. Surprised more weren't keeping to the edge of the river on the way up

Bike:
-Exciting!
-Rolling is probably the best word for it
-Little stop start with a few too many corners, but nice to sit up on occasions to stretch
-Two big hills weren't too bad. Both over in under 3-4 mins
-Two ramps (on each loop) which were 5-10 metres high and temporary scaffolding. Not sure if they put it up for the race or normally there.
-Marshalls were the best I'd seen for any event, ever present and very little drafting that I could see. Definitely no packs of cyclists
-Cobbled sections lasted about 1km and over in one go. Took you through main square so lots of support
-Lots of Police on junctions stopping traffic
-Roads closed by barriers
-Hundreds of marshalls / volunteers
-Excellent aid stations
-Toilets were clean!

Run:
-4 loops
-I'd say support (vocal) was present for 60-70% of the course
-Very little areas where there weren't people cheering you on
-Great dutch locals really cheering you on and you could sense them getting a little more intoxicated on each lap!
-One slight hill 2.5km in to each loop. Over within 150m or so. Rest near flat
-Great for families to watch from. Lots of cafes, restaurants
-Tracking on day worked really well and family knew when I was coming
-Aid stations spot on too. They were giving out food / drink in both directions given the heat

I think the best summary I could give would be this:- For many events, I question where the entry fee goes. This was my first Ironman branded event, and the first for which I couldn't see much (if any profit) being made.

Would I do it again? Yes. I would pay for Maastricht.

Will I? In a few years yes - if the event doesn't grow beyond the 1,200 or so who took part. Think if it was up near 2,000, some of the bike course / run course would suffer.

Feel free to ask any more questions. Happy to answer.
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doddydodd




Joined: 12 Feb 2016
Posts: 23
Location: Essex

PostPosted: Wed Aug 09, 2017 12:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the reply guys,

really appreciate it, I have a sense that Zurich will be a good race but hearing this sort of feedback for Maastricht is a real positive as it would only take me a few hours either side of the tunnel or ferry to get there.
it will be my 1st IM event and I can't bring myself to pay a premium to race in UK (sunny Bolton or wet windy wales). I wanted it to be a experience for the family too so a bit of a road trip.
Hearing it has great support and places for the family to watch etc is defo a bonus.
having everything near for registration, transition, start and finish is important with the family coming, it is what has put me off lanzarote as i read that the registration etc is the other side of the island.
Again thanks for the feedback, it would be good to hear if anyone has done zurich to compare.

Thanks again.
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Last edited by doddydodd on Wed Aug 09, 2017 12:40 pm; edited 1 time in total
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kennyOX2




Joined: 18 Aug 2014
Posts: 146
Location: Oxford

PostPosted: Wed Aug 09, 2017 12:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

What is the journey time from Calais? Or, failing that, what is the best transport route via ferry or Tunnel?
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doddydodd




Joined: 12 Feb 2016
Posts: 23
Location: Essex

PostPosted: Wed Aug 09, 2017 12:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

about 3 and half hours according to google maps.
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JeffB




Joined: 04 May 2008
Posts: 1023
Location: Middlesbrough

PostPosted: Wed Aug 09, 2017 8:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Think there was plenty of hotels near the centre as well, I actually stayed about 2 miles out of town on some business type park near a convention centre, it was a bit out of the way but there was a train & buses to the centre if you didn't want to drive. A good hotel was fairly cheap as well as there were conferences on.

But if you are with the family, I'd probably suggest trying to get in the town. There were some nice shops as well.

Jeff
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holster




Joined: 15 Sep 2014
Posts: 38

PostPosted: Wed Aug 09, 2017 8:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

We were a little late booking a place and got a place in a bungalow park 10km north (in Belgium). No problems getting in to town and spent the 13 euros for parking on Fri, Sat and Sun. Busses also not a problem.
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