On Thursday night I went over to Reading to take part in the Big Dog Swim. Less than a week after moving house I really wasn't race-ready, but the two ladies who helped with our house move wanted to go, and so we were able to repay their kind help with a lift over.
I decided to swim non-wetsuit - it was 21C for goodness sake! However, I was almost the only one, with everyone else neoprened up. So it was quite easy to be first non wetsuit person home. I was slow, very slow, around 1h 9 for my 3.8k, of which I reckon I lost 4 minutes by not wearing a wetsuit and 4 minutes by being very tired (on Saturday my 100m reps in the pool were about 4 seconds off - if you add that up, it would be around 4 minutes). Still, it was good enough to come home in around 10th and 3rd woman, maintaining my run of podium swim race finishes this season :)
I really enjoyed the swim. The Tri2Open lake is beautiful and virtually weed free. Despite a greyish day, the sun came out as we were waiting to go in, and we got to watch it set during the hour or so of the swim. I felt like I was swimming strongly and well - the picture below shows an excellent body position. There was a bit of bashing around the first couple of buoys but then it spread out, and I had a good race with another guy who was virtually my speed. He led for nearly 2 laps (but I couldn't draft from him as he was not swimming very straight), and then as the faster 1500m swimmers who had started just after us came through at the end of the second lap, I managed to get on one of their feet for 20m or so, which put me in the lead by about 5 metres which I managed to hang onto until the end. Great fun!