I’ve done a few events over the last few years that are now putting 18-49 as one big AG and only awarding prizes to over 50s. This is even happening in quite big races like the 113.
I know that people are generally more healthy & fitter nowadays, and that due to uptake in the sport and people ageing, they are pulling the standards up. Certainly if you look at longer events, they are predominantly older males and 40-49 are the biggest AGs; in fact there are precious few people under 30!
However. I have believe it or not, been twentysomething and then thirtysomething, and would imagine like anyone who has done the sport in their 20s/30s and 40s, realise that actually we are not the same athlete we were in the other decades. I have definitely noticed changes over those years, and to place a 30-35 yr old against a 49 year old does not seem justified to me. Yes there are some very fast 49 year olds, but show me more than 1 or 2 in any decent sized domestic event. For me, ‘peak endurance’ in triathlon is probably 30-40, then a very small hit at 40; but when you get to mid 40s, to me, it really feels like something starts to change; that plateau gets harder to stay on; in particular the swimming gets harder.
What do people think? Particularly those clearly north of 40 who’ve been doing this for a long time.