Both Sarah Black and Marcus Sheridan lined up on the start line of the Lakeland Triathlon on Saturday afternoon knowing what was required – or so they thought.
Due to a lack of attention to detail the 10km run course was under marshalled. Consequently a large number of athletes went the wrong way. Both Sarah and Marcus knew where they were supposed to go but as they were coming in off the bike leg they were greeted with runners coming the opposite way – which they shouldn’t have been.
It was totally understandable for them both to think that the run had been changed at the last min, especially when Sarah asked a marshall “which way is the run going now” – “just follow all the other runners” was the reply…so she did. Basically a key junction early on in the run had not been marshalled and the directional arrow ‘went missing’ – so once one of the leaders ran the wrong way, many others followed and so on. This is obviously very frustrating for all competitors as the race is now basically a void.
On the athletes part there’s not really much you can say, we should all know the routes etc but there has to be a certain level of organisation to prevent this sort of thing from happening, and if it’s not in place, then you run the risk of turning the whole thing into a farce – which the Lakeland Triathlon 2012 certainly was. On the back of situations like this, people will certainly think twice about entering future races from certain ‘Event Organisers’. Such a shame for all athletes concerned but especially all those whose 1st race it was..