Hard weeks of training towards Sydney race spec got me ready for the demands of the competition. Travelling into Sydney Thursday, for briefing made reality kick in as I saw who I was racing. We had a great place to stay thanks to Triathlon Australia at Radisson Blu that was about half way between the two transitions. An extremely early start to race day, 4.45am, I was up on the rollers giving the legs a quick spin before our breakfast got delivered to our door. Rolling out of our hotel at 6am we had to drop our shoes at T2 before rolling down the hill to T1. The water temperature was said to be a balmy 24.1 degrees which I knew could not be right after our swim in the harbour pre- race. An hour before the race, the officials called it a wetsuit swim. I would have been happy either way as I was prepared, comfortable and confident for both.
Being such a low number, I didn’t have much choice in my start position. The harbour had barely any movement in the water. This swim was the first swim in a while that was not brutal. I did not get hit or kicked, a total comparison to what Erin Densham was saying about hers. I had clear water from the start putting my head down and following feet. I wasn’t feeling that good and actually thought I was having a shocker of a swim; my arms were heavy and I felt like I was getting no catch. The most intense part was probably getting out of the water on the first lap up the ramp as so many girls were trying to get out at the same time. Diving back in seeing that I was in first pack, I wanted to keep my position or move forward throughout the pack. Moving up a few positions in last 750m, the long run to transition was ahead of me.
I have been holding back my run at the start, trying not to get take it out too hard. With so many girls coming off the bike at the same time, I tried to work my way through the field working on getting the girls in front. From the last few races, I now think I could go out a bit harder as that first 5km seems a bit too comfortable for race expectations. I ran as I expected, with similar times to previous races. I just need to keep working on my pop, keeping tall and running more on my forefeet. With time hopefully I will get stronger and more competitive in the run. The 4 laps also went very quick with running down the finish straight fairly quick. Finishing in 39th, I was very happy for my first World Triathlon Series race.
Thanks to all the Triathlon Australia staff for pre and post -race recovery and looking after us so well especially on race day with our early start. We had great support out there for Australia and from all my friends and family. Finding 22 messages on my phone when I finished with videos and pictures of my whole race was an awesome surprise! I am happy I was given the opportunity to race and show to myself how far I have come and places that I can be in the future!