FAQ

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General and Entry Topics

  • What is a triathlon?

    A triathlon is a multi-disciplined sporting event in which each competitor starts with a swim, then cycles and then runs. Between each discipline, the competitor returns to the transition area, where the bike is racked during the swim and the run, and changes over from swim to bike and from bike to run. This open event has one transition area near the swim in Roundhay Park.

  • How can I enter the event?

    Entry is now open for all races across the weekend. Enter online here.

  • Where does the Columbia Threadneedle World Triathlon Leeds take place?

    The open event has one transition. The event starts in the lake at Roundhay Park and Transition is close to the lake. The cycle section takes place close to Roundhay Park, and the run course takes you to the finish in Leeds City Centre. See the course maps here.

  • Is the course hilly/technical/flat?

    You can take a look at the route on our course maps here.

  • Is the route on closed roads?

    Yes. All the roads on the cycle and run course will be fully closed to traffic.

  • Can you explain the courses for the different distances?

    Course information, including numbers of laps can be seen here

    • Standard Distance = 1500m swim; 40km bike; 10km run
    • Sprint Distance = 750m swim; 20km bike; 7.5km run
    • GO TRI Distance = 200m or 400m swim; 10km; 2.5km
    • TriStar 2 = 200m swim, 5km bike, 1.7km run
    • TriStar 3 = 300m swim, 5km bike, 2.5km run
    • Aquathlon = 750m swim, 5km run

  • What is the minimum age for this event?

    The Columbia Threadneedle World Triathlon Leeds is open to the following ages:

    • Standard Distance - Ages 17 and over as of 31/12/2017
    • Sprint Distance - Ages 15 and over as of 31/12/2017
    • GO TRI - Ages 15 and over as of 31/12/2017
    • TriStar 2 - Ages 11 to 12 as of 31/12/2017
    • TriStar 3 - Ages 13 to 14 as of 31/12/2017
    • Aquathlon - Ages 15 and over as of 31/12/2017
    • Paratriathlon - Ages 15 and over as of 31/12/2017
    • Participants under the age of 17 will need to provide consent from a parent or guardian and proof of age when they collect their race pack.
  • How many triathletes will be competing in the Open Standard distance?

    Around 3,000 will be competing in the Open Standard distance, but only up to 100 people in each start.

  • How does the Relay work?

    Relay teams will compete over either the Standard distance or the Sprint distance. There can be two or three people competing as a team under one race number. One team member will swim the 1500m or 750m swim course, one team member will cycle the 40km or 20km bike course, and the third team member will run the 10km or 7.5km run course. If there are two in a team, one person can do two disciplines. All team members have access to the transition areas. There is one timing chip worn by the swimmer first (on the ankle), then handed to the cyclist at the racked bike in Transition 1, where the timing chip is placed around the cyclist’s left ankle. During the cycle, the runner waits in Transition 2 by the empty racking position, and when the cyclist arrives and racks the bike, the timing chip is placed around the ankle of the runner before she/he starts the run.

  • How can I withdraw from the event and obtain a refund?

    If the Participant wishes to withdraw from the Event at any point they must do so by informing the Organiser by email immediately to leeds@britishtriathlon.org writing in the email subject title “WITHDRAWAL”. No other method of withdrawal is accepted by the organiser. The Organiser will confirm the withdrawal by email to the Participant within 5 working days. If no response to the withdrawal request is received the Participant should phone the organiser [01509 226161].

    No refunds can be given to participants withdrawing after 5pm on WEDNESDAY 10 MAY 2017.

    A Participant may withdraw free-of-charge and be refunded in full up to two weeks after the date of entry confirmation, after which time the entry fee will not be refunded in full. This will be superseded by the following dates. Participants withdrawing by 5pm on MONDAY 10 APRIL 2017 will receive a 50% refund. Participants withdrawing by 5pm on WEDNESDAY 10 MAY 2017 will receive a 25% refund. In all cases the booking fee cannot be refunded.

    All refunds are to be processed directly by the event organiser. If you require a refund you must contact the Event Organiser directly.

  • Can I defer my entry to next year?

    No. Entries cannot be deferred to the following year nor to any other event.

  • I wish to start with my friends. What can I do?

    If you are competing in the Sprint or the GO TRI event it is possible to arrange to start in the same wave as your friends. To request this please email leeds@britishtriathlon.org with the names of the athletes you’d like to be in the same wave as to.

    However as the Standard distance event is a British Championship, waves will be organised in age group categories and therefore unfortunately cannot be changed.

  • I have entered the race from my mobile phone and paid the fee. What do I need to do next?

    Express registration enables users who are on their mobile device to quickly pay, reserve their spot, and complete registration on their computer at a later time. Please follow the link on the confirmation email as soon as you can to complete your registration in full.

  • I missed out on a place in the distance I wanted. Is there a waiting list/cancellation policy?

    Unfortunately we don’t operate a reserve/cancellation list. Go to the entry page to see which entry types are available.

  • How can I update my personal details on my entry?

    Login to your myevents.active.com page and select ‘Edit registration information’ and follow the instructions there.

  • I forgot to buy some event merchandise during the entry process. Can I buy this at a later date?

    Yes of course. Login to your myevents.active.com page and select ‘Purchase additional merchandise’ and follow the instructions there.

Accommodation, Arrival and Spectators

Pre Event and Registration Topics

Equipment and Clothing Topics

  • What equipment will I need for this event?

    The only equipment provided are a swim cap and race numbers. You will need to provide everything else which will include (but not be limited to):

    • swimming costume or trisuit which you can wear for the whole event
    • wetsuit for the swim - compulsory
    • swimming goggles
    • a triathlon bicycle - this could be a mountain bike but a road bike is better for road based triathlons
    • a cycle helmet
    • bike shoes
    • any other clothing required for the bike, such as a jacket or gloves
    • a bike bottle filled with water or an energy drink
    • sunglasses if required
    • a cap for the run if required
    • a number belt if required (most event organisers will provide safety pins)
    • running shoes
  • What is the difference between a trisuit and a wetsuit?

    A trisuit is made from Lycra and worn as regular racing kit throughout the triathlon. You can swim in it, cycle in it and run in it. A wetsuit is made of neoprene fabric and is a protective layer worn only for the swim to keep you warm in cold water. You should wear your trisuit for the whole race and, more importantly, wear it underneath your wetsuit - which you ONLY wear for the swim.

  • Can I hire a wetsuit for the event?

    Yes. We can recommend a hire company that will offer month or season hire if you need a wetsuit. This must be arranged in advance of the event day. Email Help Desk at leeds@britishtriathlon.org for more information.

  • What type of bike can I use for this event?

    The event is run under British Triathlon rules and the permitted cycling equipment is explained in Section 5 of the rule book available from this link.

  • Do I need to use my own bike?

    If you have your own bike, then yes you should use it. We do not provide a bike for you to use.

  • Do I need cleats/clipless pedals for the cycle?

    No, you don’t have to have cleats/clipless pedals.

  • Do I need to wear a cycle helmet?

    Yes. You must wear a cycle helmet for the whole of the cycle section of the event. Your cycle helmet must be on your head and fastened whenever you are in contact with your bike. So don’t take the bike off the rack until your helmet is on and done up, and don’t unfasten your helmet until your bike is back on the rack after your cycle section.

  • What should I wear for the whole event; do you recommend any clothing /gear for all three stages?

    Most people wear a trisuit for the whole event. You can swim in it (under the wetsuit), then cycle and run in it. But any clothing is acceptable so long as you are suitably clothed at all stages of the event including in transition! Your upper body must be fully clothed during the bike and the run.

  • How many race numbers will you provide and what are they for?

    We provide one bib number to be worn on your body for the bike and the run. It is preferable to use a race number belt which you will provide yourself and you can attach your number to that. Then you can wear the number on your back for the cycle and spin the belt around for the run so the number shows on your front. Then you can wear as many tops as you like without affecting the race number. You don’t wear the race number for the swim. We also provide numbered stickers for your bike and cycle helmet. There will be three stickers for the front and both sides of the cycle helmet. There will be one long, double number to be attached like a flag around the seat post of your bike. You will also receive a numbered security wristband which you must wear throughout the event. All the numbers will match.

  • What do I do with my timing chip?

    You will be provided with a timing chip and Velcro strap at registration. This must be worn around your left ankle throughout the event. Your split times will be recorded providing your timing chip is on your ankle. It will not work if worn anywhere else. Your timing chip will be collected at the end of the run.

Rules and Regulations Topics

  • Are there any particular rules that must be followed for this event?

    Yes. The event is run under British Triathlon rules which can be found here.

    Do try to read through at your leisure well before the event.

  • What are the most important rules that must be followed?

    Some of the most important rules relate to the cycle section and transition. For example:

    • Your cycle helmet must be on your head and fastened whenever you are in contact with your bike. So don’t take the bike off the rack until your helmet is on and done up, and don’t unfasten your helmet until your bike is back on the rack after your cycle section.
    • You must rack your bike in the correct allotted space in transition.
    • You must not mark your position in the transition in any way.
    • You must not use headphones or a mobile phone either in transition or at any time during the race.
    • You cannot receive any outside assistance during the race, for example your friend cannot offer you a drink on the run course (only our volunteers can offer you drinks from our drinks stations) nor can anyone help you change a flat tyre on the bike section.
    • No drafting on the bike course - which means not cycling too close to the bike in front.
    • Your race number should be worn on your back for the cycle and on your front for the run. This is most easily achieved using a number belt, which you have to provide yourself.
    • There are lots more important rules not mentioned here, so do read the rulebook.
  • Can I wear headphones during the bike and the run?

    No definitely not! You cannot use anything that will impede your hearing during the race. This includes, but is not limited to, headphones and mobile phones.

  • Is there a cut off time?

    All Sunday age group competitors must be off the course by 12:50pm.

Race Day Topics

  • Where do I change my clothes between the swim and the bike?

    There are no changing facilities in transition. It is expected that you will complete the whole event in whatever you wear to swim in. Nudity is not allowed at any time, so you can add clothing to the top of your swim gear, but not remove your swim gear completely before you dress for the bike and run. You must wear a swimsuit under your wetsuit (if used). A trisuit is perfect as you can swim, cycle and run in it without the need to change clothes in transition. Your upper body must be fully clothed during the bike and the run.

  • Will there be feed stations, medical and mechanical support on the course?

    On the swim course, there will be safety kayaks and safety boats to support the swimmers. On the bike course, there will be medical support at strategic points around the course. There will be no mechanical support on the bike course for the Open races and no drinks stations. Make sure your bike is in a roadworthy condition for the event and you will have to fix your own flat tyres if necessary. Carry your own fluids on the bike. On the run course, there will be drinks stations as well as medical support.

  • Who do I contact about lost property?

    Please visit the Help Desk in the registration area on the day of the event. Alternatively, email us at leeds@britishtriathlon.org with a detailed description of your lost item(s).

Transition Area Topics

  • What is the transition area and how secure is it while I am racing?

    The transition areas are high security, fenced off areas, which only competitors and race officials can access. There is only one transition areas at this event. Transition is where the competitor comes from the swim to collect the bike to start the cycle section, and then is where the bike is again stored at the end of the cycle section during the run. Each competitor has their own space in the transition areas. They can leave whatever gear they need for the transition. Any other belongings, not required during the race, can be left in our baggage drop area, which is also secure.

  • Can I mark my position in the transition area so I can easily find my bike after the swim?

    No you cannot mark your position in transition in any way. If you do try to mark your position, any distinguishing marks will be removed by the race officials while you are swimming. You should try to orientate yourself in transition by checking anything fixed such as row numbers and trees etc near to your racking position.

  • What will I need to gain access to the transition area?

    You will need to show your security wristband each time you enter and exit the transition. You will not be allowed access to the transition areas without your security wristband. You can come and go in the transition areas once your bike is racked, provided you are wearing your security wristband.

  • How do I know which way to go; where to exit transition on my bike and to exit transition on my run?

    Allow plenty of time when you first rack your bike to check out the ‘swim in’ area, the ‘bike out’ area and the ‘run out’ area in Transition. Make sure you understand the way the flows work in transition.

  • Can you give me any tips to speed up my transition times?

    You should have all your race kit out ready in the order you will put it on. Lay it out by your bike. Have your cycle helmet ready on your handlebars with the straps straight and undone. Remember that race belts save time as well as elastic laces and lace locks. Fix your body race number to your race belt before you go off to do your swim. If you wear the right triathlon clothing you will certainly speed up your race times. Understand the flows in transition and know exactly where the bike out point is and the run out point. This will save you time in transition. Remember where your racking position is by locating fixed points in transition near your bike such as row numbers and trees etc.

  • What happens when I take my bike out of the transition area after my race?

    Your security wristband will be cut off your wrist as you exit transition with your bike after you have finished your race. The security team will check that the race number on your bike matches the race number on your wristband as you leave the area.

Swimming Topics

  • Is the water in Roundhay Park Lake safe to swim in?

    Yes. We carry out many scientific water quality tests throughout the year to monitor the water quality of the lake. Swimming will only be allowed if the water passes the water quality tests.

  • What safety measures are in place during the swim?

    We use a very experienced Swim Safety team who provide a number of safety kayaks and rescue power boats throughout the swim course. Should you get into difficulty in the swim, lie on your back and raise one arm; a kayak will then escort you to safety. As you will be wearing a wetsuit, the buoyancy will help too, so don’t panic.

  • Do I have to wear a wetsuit for the swim?

    Yes. For safety reasons, wetsuits will be compulsory for all Open Races in Leeds.

    However, if the water temperature is 22 degrees C or higher, one hour before the start of the race, then wetsuits will be banned. But this is highly unlikely.

    We won’t know the official water temperature until one hour before the race start. We can recommend a hire company if you need to hire a wetsuit, but this must be arranged well in advance of the event.

    If you use your own wetsuit, write your name inside for identification in case of a mix up in transition. All wetsuits look the same!

  • What is the likely water temperature in the lake at Roundhay Park for the event?

    The water temperature is likely to be somewhere between 13 and 18 degrees C. But we won’t know the official water temperature until one hour before the race start.

  • Do I need to wear a swim cap?

    Yes. You will be issued with a coloured swim cap in your race pack at registration. Everyone must wear a swim cap for safety reasons. A swimmer is easier to see in the water if they’re wearing a swim cap. All athletes who start in the same wave will have the same colour cap on. But there will be more than one wave with the same coloured swim cap, so check your start time and don’t just go by the colour of the swim caps entering the water. It may not be your wave start!

  • Do I need to wear goggles in the swim?

    Any open water swimming really does require goggles. Open water swimming also benefits from goggles with lenses suitable for outdoors. These are slightly different colours to those you would normally use in a swimming pool where the water is clear and the lights are bright. Most open water swimmers would use a lightly tinted or persimmon coloured lens, which will make everything look clearer and crisper, especially if the weather is not too bright! Prescription goggles are also acceptable.

  • Is the swim a dive start?

    No. All of the Open events are deep water starts. When you enter the water you will hold onto the edge of the pontoon and only let go to start the competition once the start signal has been given.

  • Can I use any stroke during the swim?

    Backstroke is not allowed as this can easily be confused with the distress signal and you cannot easily see where you are going. We recommend that you try to swim front crawl but breaststroke is also permitted.

Cycling Topics

  • What is drafting? Is the bike section draft legal? Can I draft on the bike?

    Drafting is cycling close to the bike in front and thereby gaining an advantage. All the Open races are non-drafting for the bike section. This means you cannot cycle closer than 10m from the bike in front of you, nor cycle alongside another cyclist closer than 3m.

  • Can I use a mountain bike?

    Yes you can. But a road bike is better. The event is run under British Triathlon rules and the permitted cycling equipment is explained in Section 5 of the rule book available from this link.

  • Can I use tri bars?

    Yes you can as the Open races are non-drafting. All bar ends must be plugged and safety checks will be carried out at the entrance to transition.

  • Will there be a water station on the bike course?

    No there will be no water stations on the bike course. You must carry your own fluids on the bike.

  • Where do I wear my body race number on the bike section?

    Your body race number should be worn on your back during the bike section. The easiest way to achieve this is by wearing the race number on a number belt and ensuring the number is displayed on your back during the bike section. You will need to provide your own number belt.

Running Topics

  • Will there be a water station on the run course?

    Yes there will be water stations on the run course. Our volunteers will be manning the water stations and will ensure that you receive a drink should you need one on the run. There will also be a water station after you cross the finish line.

  • Should I wear specific running trainers?

    Yes - it will make your race experience more enjoyable. Your trainers should be properly fitted and should be comfortable for running. You could use elastic laces which will help save a lot of time in transition. Whatever you do, do not wear brand new trainers on race day!

  • Where do I wear my body race number on the run section?

    Your body race number should be worn on your front during the run section. The easiest way to achieve this is by wearing the race number on a number belt and ensuring the number is displayed on your front during the run section. You will need to provide your own number belt.

  • Where do I collect my race medal?

    You will receive your medal in the finishing area after you cross the finish line.

Post-Race Topics