Chemin des Dames M – Chamouilles – May 21st 2017
Race reporter: Sean
Cat had warned me, after she did this race a couple of years ago, that it was a hilly one and she wasn’t joking; on both the bike and run course you felt like you were either going up or going down but never flat… Myself, Cat, Virgile and Karen made up the Expatriés gang for the day with Virgile’s girlfriend Marianne doing the sprint distance in the morning.
Chemin des Dames is about 2hrs drive North-East of Paris and attracts a quality field of triathletes from around the region. The event gets bigger each year with nearly 450 starting the Olympic distance race and another 350 doing the sprint competition. The race is organised around the Base de Loisirs so the facilities were excellent (including proper toilets 😉 ).
The swim is a two-lap course with ‘une sortie à l’Australienne‘ in the Lac de L’ailette – there were quite a few weeds to contend with à la Cergy but the water was clear and wasn’t cold at all. Once on to the bike course the first climb hits you nearly straight away but we were helped on the second climb with numerous spray-painted words of encouragement telling you how far it was to the top – the bénevoles clearly had a sense of humour. Similarly the first climb on the run hits you early on and is made worse by knowing you have to do it again on the way back.
As we passed through the numerous pretty villages supporters were out in force enjoying the sunshine – and possibly our suffering too! Definitely one for next year’s race diary.