Starman family

Planning for Starman 2019

It’s nearly time! Less than four weeks to go and hopefully you’re as physically and mentally ready as you can be! The event manual can be found here and contains everything you need to know about race day, and you MUST read it thoroughly before the event.

It does include your kit list but we thought we would put together an overview of a few key items to remember.

An obvious one for a night triathlon but it is vital you think about your lights carefully, and ideally test them before hand. You need AT LEAST one front white light and one back red light for your bike, and a head torch for the run.

The cycle is very dark and there are few places with street lights. We recommend at least 600 lumens but you may wish to consider more lumens and more than one front light. Ideally your lights should last at least four hours for both the bike and the run, and you should have spare batteries or spare lights. We recommend you having a chat with your local bike shop about options. Mike’s Bikes in Aviemore will also be open should you need to panic buy anything on the Saturday!

There is some discussion about lights on the Starman Night Tri Chatter Facebook group. And remember – we provide the glow sticks for the swim!

The event manual outlines essential clothes (wetsuit, high vis jacket, jacket for the run, hat and gloves) but here are some items that you could think about bringing with you and you can decide on the night what to wear.

Jacket – make sure any jackets you bring are waterproof as it could be torrential rain and often you won’t really know what the weather will be like in advance (in 2017 we had awful storms until just a few hours before the event, and then it was clear skies and warm!).

Waterproof trousers – thin waterproof run trousers are a good idea for the summit of Cairngorm in case the descent is cold.

Bike leg warmers – if you plan on wearing shorts, you could think about bringing cycling leg warmers as an optional layer – they are easy to zip on and off and can also be used on the run if it is surprisingly cold (and let’s face it, it could be 4 degrees, it could be 24 degrees!)

Warm finish line clothes – again, it is important to make sure you leave something comfortable and warm, and waterproof, at the finish line. There is a cafe to shelter from the midgies and the weather!

Don’t forget about your supporters! We recommend they also bring a selection of layers, including a waterproof jacket and trousers, and warm options. We STRONGLY recommend a good quality insect repellant, and supporters may also want to bring a hat with an insect net built in. The finish line is on the beach and the midgies can be relentless if there is no breeze.

No, not your favourite necklace – think walking poles, rucksack, race belt, hat, gloves…

A hat and gloves are part of your essential race kit and you must have them with you on the run, but you will likely need gloves for cycling if it is chilly. You may also want to bring overshoes for the cycle as it may be cold and wet.

A good rucksack, preferably with hydration system, is recommended to carry all your kit – make sure you have practiced running in it. You can have this ready for you at T2 or you can take it with you on the bike leg if you wish. It needs to hold everything listed in the race manual.

Consider running with poles, especially if you are not used to mountain running in the dark. There are very few flat sections of the run. If you have not had a chance to recce it before hand, it is essentially straight up and down two mountains and there are some difficult sections. If you are not sure, bring your poles in your T2 bag and you can decide on the night if you want them or not. If they fold down and can be strapped to your bag, even better.

Other accessories you may need – ear plugs for the swim, a race belt for your number, Body Glide for the swim, clear glasses for the bike (to keep dirt and flies out of your eyes), portable charger and phone cable, long-sleeved top.

Emergency pack
You MUST carry with you a basic first aid kit, survival bag and a whistle. You will be able to purchase these in Aviemore if necessary, as there are numerous outdoor shops. Many kits come with survival foil blankets but you MUST carry a survival bag and they can be purchased cheaply, for example this one on Amazon.

The course is, of course, marked and there will be marshals at various points. However it is good practice to familiarise yourself with the route, and carry a paper map that you know how to read.

A map of the bike route can be found here and you can download the data files here if you prefer.

A map of the run route is here and you can download the data files here.

So, we would love to hear your hints and tips for what to bring – let us know what products you have found the most helpful or reasonably priced. And don’t panic! We are here to help.

Author: The Starman

Set in the mighty Cairngorms National Park this is going to be a sleepless, tough, intimidating and wild triathlon under the stars.