arundel triathlon 2014 race review, arundel triathlon 2014 race report, arundel triathlon race tips, arundel triathlon 2015 course details Located in the historic market town of Arundel, this new Olympic distance tri sees hundreds take on 1.5km tidal river swim, before tackling a testing 40km undulating course through the South Downs National Park followed by a tough 10km run through the town with the castle and cathedral providing the backdrop for the finish.

When: August (since 2014)raw energy persuits ardunel triathlon

Where: West Sussex, southern England

Size: 200 triathletes (for first year)

Distance: Olympic

Official race website here.


  • Be prepared for a tightly packed swim start with a bit of rough and tumble
  • Despite the River Arun having the second fastest flow of any UK river, don’t panic – the race is held during slack water timetriathlon tips, triathlon reviews
  • Get some hill sessions in (bike and run) as they will pay dividends 
  •  Don’t go out too quick on the bike    
  • The bike leg has one long climb and while the gradient never gets too steep, it does seem to last quite a while
  • The hill climb in the run is off road and a challenge when tired.
  • Save something for your downhill sprint finish – you want to look good for the crowd!
  • Try to look up and enjoy the lovely sights!


What was the organisation and set up like?

Organisation in the lead up and on the day was excellent.  There was some variation in the start time to allow for river conditions but we were kept fully informed by email in the days leading up to the race so there were no surprises.  

On the day everything just seemed seamless.  All the Marshall’s and event staff knew what they were doing and had the information they needed.  

arundel triathlon swim, arundel triathlon 2014 review, arundel triathlon 2015, arundel triathlon review report swimThere were plenty of Marshall’s who were all enthusiastic and made it easy to focus on the race rather than getting lost. The briefing on the river bank covered everything necessary without getting so long that anyone got impatient. The transition area had enough room for everyone and was marshaled at all times. Sign up was a doddle.


What was the course like?

The swim takes place in the shadow of the castle which is great for spectators but all a bit lost on the swimmers!

The bike is a picturesque, undulating course through the South Downs National Park.

However, it’s the run course that’s the jewel in the crown for this race. Starting out along the flat, tree lined road that takes you away from the castle, it turns left at the lake and winds up a gravel path to the folly. From here the view down onto the cathedral and village takes your mind off the painful climb. 

Once at the folly, it’s a fast downhill run back into Arundel and the crowds in the village square.


How difficult is Arundel Castle Triathlon?

On the bike it’s a one lap route with everything you expect from the South Downs National Park – a challenging mix of lung busting hills and long sweeping descents.

The run is seriously tough with the big climb mentioned above. The crowd though, help in a big way in the village and it’s great to have a surge of support at this half way point. The second lap is tough going with many forced to run/walk up the hill. 


What was the atmosphere like?arundel triathlon run course

The atmosphere was excellent all round.  Spectators were able to see everything as transition and the finish line were very close together – it felt like everyone got really involved in the action.

There were a few bemused looks as we ran through the village but everyone, even the tourists, were very welcoming.  There was plenty of competition on the bike leg which was made more amusing by several of us getting caught up in a Morris minor club day outing. 
On the run, lots of encouragement was heard as we started to tire on the final hill climb.


What is there to do Après-Race?

Arundel is a lovely little village.  There are a large number of coffee shops and tea rooms so no shortage of places for athletes to refuel after or the family to hang out in while you race.  Also within the village is the castle itself which is a good visit – lots of historic detail, amazing architecture and an armory with lots of swords!  

There are lots of Antique and gift shops so no shortage of things to keep you interested.  There’s also a brilliant crazy golf course which is just down from transition!  




My Race Diarymark lewis arundel triathlon finish

mark lewis triathlete, mark lewis arundel triathlon

Mark Lewis – regular triathlete


By Mark Lewis

Race no. 1st Olympic

Time: 2hrs 26mins

Position: 43rd


The start was the usual melee of arms and legs but all good natured and fair. Early excitement got the better off me and I went out a little fast which I soon regretted. As the field got more stretched out, I tried to relax and stick to the toes of some faster swimmers as I slowed down.


After the halfway turn I hugged the bank and tried to keep my breathing under control.

I felt the bike would be my strongest leg so pushed hard all the way round the undulating course with the motivating words of one of the marshals ringing in my ears – ‘you look fit, give i everything’. The one lap route had everything you expect from the South Downs National Park – a challenging mix of lung busting hills and long sweeping descents. My training paid off and I managed to make up time and passed a number of other competitors on the long climb that preceded the fast downhill back into the village and transition.

I made a rookie mistake and ended up running into T2 wearing one shoe and the other clipped to the bike. It didn’t look good but I somehow made it work.

arundel triathlon swim start courseThe run course is the jewel in the crown for this race. Starting out along the flat, tree lined road that takes you away from the castle, my run legs came to me quicker than I expected. Turning left at the lake we wound our way up the gravel path that climbs up to the folly which looks down onto the cathedral and picturesque village. It’s a tough climb on the gravel track but I seemed to be moving well so pushed on in the hope that I wouldn’t blow up before the end.

Once at the folly, it’s a fast downhill run back into Arundel and the crowds in the village square.

Running through the closed roads of the village with supporters cheering us on was quite a treat.

The second lap was tough going and many were forced to run/walk up the hill. I managed to keep everything together and emptied the tank on the final downhill where the support at the village square finish line was incredible.

I had optimistically targeted 2hours 30mins and surprised myself by finishing in 2:26 which topped off an incredible day. I will definitely be back for more next year which promises to be even bigger and better.


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