How was the lake swim? I remember doing it a few years ago during a cold spell, and that run up to T1 was just carnage as everyone was so cold and disorientated coming out the water.
Great result considering your legs can''t have been back to normal.
I like your comment of "a lovely steep start," I guess if there is any "lovely" hill it's at the start when you're half frozen and need to warm up! Did anyone swim without a wetsuit?
It was in battle at the Sussex Triathlon. Hillier than Hever, more scenic but most importantly, cheaper:-)
The water was cold to start with but the sun warmed you up pretty quickly.
Wetsuits were compulsory as below 15 degrees.