Monday, 18 March 2013

Mooloolaba World Cup


I have described the last 12 days as a “working holiday“ to many. It might sound funny and I know you can’t be, but I felt jet lagged from New Zealand with my body so out of whack with the time zone changes. Although Queensland doesn’t allow a holiday sleep in with a 5.30am sunrise, we headed to Mooloolaba with a job to do after Wellington. From Wellington to Mooloolaba, it was important to recover and I had an easier week working into the weekend. We all enjoyed the down time and a few short sharp sessions to get the body back into race gear. The night before the race, instead of the normal pizza and pasta, we went with what Erin Densham did last year to win Mooloolaba, with pre race Thai. I think I will be having thai more often now ;).

 

 

 

USM events and ITU made the decision earlier in the week to change the swim to the canal rather than the ocean due to dangerous surf conditions. The decision didn’t fuss me as I believe if you are confident in your swim you can swim anywhere. Sunday was described by Weather Zone as a “warm to hot day” and it definitely turned out to be one. A luke warm, bath like canal invited us into its 27 degree water for a 1500m swim around the island. The most relaxed I have been before a race in awhile, I was confidence and excited to have a good race. I knew that I needed to have a good swim to be in the main group on the bike. A small but quality field, 16 girls lined up to race. By the first buoy, I was on good feet and made the decision to sit behind. When we turned around the back straight, the pace increased slightly and the pack of girls split. All the way around I knew I was swimming on good feet of Emma Moffatt and Rebecca Clarke and I came out of the water in third with Andrea Hewitt. A quick smart transition, eight of us were out onto the bike course for seven laps.

 

It was important in the warm temperature to drink plenty of water on the bike. Going up and down the hill 14 times in the ride, it takes a decent amount of energy out of the legs. I had to sit on good wheels as last year I got dropped around the bottom u turn. The ride was solid and we were quickly gaining time on the chase pack of girls behind us who had strong runners in it. Getting a little excited and some girls not pulling their weight, I was at the front more than what I should have been. My legs felt quite good riding which I was surprised about especially after racing last weekend. Mooloolaba course is very unforgiving and it does not get any easier lap by lap. I could see  which girls were struggling and how the heat and course was affecting them. I used my skills to be near the front and stay up the front on the u turns and corners. This was the first time I have gone through my two bottles of water on a ride to make sure I was hydrated.

 

Coming onto the run, the front four girls went out fairly quick. Jamie said to me before the race, run at your own pace and it would be better to negative split. With uphills and downhills it was important to use short leavers and have higher cadence. On the first lap, I felt like I was executing this well but over time, fatigue and the heat got the better of me. We got off the bike nearly four  minutes ahead of the chase pack and I was confidence that I would not let any of them run me down. I was scared that the heat would get the better of me and I was taking all the water I could have. By the last lap, I realised that 5th was the best place I could achieve on the day and I put my body into survival mode and my only goal was to finish the race.  I knew I wasn’t negative splitting but I did what I could in those conditions and its something I can work on in the future to execute better. Finishing in 5th, I am stoked with the end result. I put some good processes together all throughout my race and I realised what I can do better. It is always exciting being up there in the race and I am excited to put pressure on myself to be up with the four girls that were up the road from me.

 

Thank you Triathlon Australia for the support, recovery and post race procedures they had in place over the weekend.  Congratulations to Grace for a win in the Oceania Cup, Ryan Bailie on his 5th in the men’s race and Charlotte a solid 7th. Next stop Auckland World Series race……….. let the games begin!!

 




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