Cluj Triathlon Challenge

2 Aug

Or better said the “fear of the dark”.

After having so many problems with my lower back, including some heavy pain and I had to rest more days than I thought, with my two buddies Alin and Tudor, we’ve decided to start for the 3rd time as a team at Cluj Triathlon. We were a team since the first edition of the race, back in 2014 and ever since we’ve won the race.

The location of the race at the very end of lake Tarnita was pretty near to the city so with Marius we went there only on Sunday morning. Alin and Tudor were already there and the starting pack waited for me already. But here was the first surprise: the pack had one energy for all us. Maybe you can explain me how to split a gel between 3 guys? Last year we got a medal for all of us so we almost had to cut it and first year the price was Garmin Vivofit that normally we should wear it each one of us for a week.

The start was delayed with more than 30 minutes which already was a lot considering that I had to put the bike in the transition area about 1 one before so I couldn’t do any kind of specific warm out and I had to improvise. Alin, our swimmer got out from the water 2nd so I had to fight for the first place. The first 15-20 minutes were pretty hard as I tried to warm up and prepare for the uphill. A lot of water on the course, potholes and stinging nettles. Basically the bike course was marked only with tape and spray but it wasn’t cleaned at all. At least I knew it so there weren’t too many surprises. I tried to ride fast enough but pretty carefully not to hurt my back or to have some mechanical problems. I’ve finished 5 minutes better than last year but overall I had the second time 0.05 seconds behind Florin Vescu who was the fastest on the bike. After a pretty fast transition Tudor ran pretty good too, having also the 2nd time overall 10 seconds behind the fastest runner but enough to have about 11 minutes in front of the second team and about 20 minutes from the third team.

We’ve waited about 4h for the prize award ceremony, which I think was a bit too much as I started to feel too hungry, but the cherry on top were the prize We got everyone a 100 lei (about 20eu) voucher to spend in a local bike shop after we’ve payed a 170 lei ( about 38 eu) registration fee. Basically we had to win and even like that we didn’t break even. The guys from 2nd and 3rd spot didn’t get anything. Even if this was the team relay, we made a financial effort, the bike suffered a bit and some parts had to be cleaned or replace so my opinion is that at least the podium should receive at least the money from the registration back for that. I would also like to mention that even we won 3 times in 3 years we never received an invitation with a free registration, which would have been nice. Just sayin’…

I would like to congratulate my team mates for the fight they put and also for making the 3rd victory in a row possible, but also the people who did this challenge by them self or as a team, especially to those who have physical disabilities and managed to finish the race. Hats off, you rock and for me you are winners too!

Let’s hope that the MRI results for my back will be good and I will be faster in the future.

Last but not least, once again many thanks to my family for the whole support, to my team mates and sponsors. Together you do amazing things for me and I really appreciate it.




Photos: Mihai Macarie, Geta Codrea


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