Monday, October 26, 2009

World Long Course Race Report

What Can I say .It was a great race but very mixed feelings regarding the results.I finished in 5hrs 58 mins and 56th in my age group of 59 .
I think the results just show how poor a swimmer I am particularly when there is some chop in the water .The river was fine but the winds were strong and they were blowinghard onthe river and causing some swell headon.It was a great experience being part of the World Championships and I enjoyed the race just not the result.

I had a tough week not so much on training but noticably after Saturdays ride my output on Tuesday was surprisingly not up to par and a week of itchy eyes and sneezing and hayfever was not the ideal.The day before the race was particularly bad after a practice swim in the river . having said that I felt alot better on Sunday morning and woke early and made my way down to Transition very early .Got ready very early and it was a good chance to practise my nutrition on the bike even though it was a shorter ride.

The swim started at 8am after the sprint race for the Triathletes in Perth.There was a lot of support and lots of people I knew were volunteering on the course. My wave went off at approximately 8.25 .It was the usual mad dash I stayed at the back and managed to keep up for a 100 meters before the lead group stretched off and I was left with a few stragglers who then slowly got further away .I swam alone for the most part and think I was reasonably good at sighting. Had a few coughing episodes with the amout of river water I swallowed and for the swim out to the turnaround ,1.8km evertime I turned and moved my arm forward , my head smashed into the next wave and that continued constantly .I just could not avoid the headon wave / chop and it certainly impeded my progress .I came out of the water in 1.18 and with a wetsuit I thought I was capable of a 1.05 or maybe that was just wishful thinking.

Once out of the water my transition wasn't great but reasonably fast about 3 or 4 mins and it was just running to my bike and getting my wetsuit off, putting on my shoes and off I went.

The cycle leg was hard with the wind whipping around and it was 4 laps of 20 km partly on the freeway .I had a very bad ride averaging 30kph when I was and should have been going harder and faster.It was mentally a struggle and I knew I was going to be slow.I couldn't give a single reason other than I just could not find any strength in my legs .It may have been the hard swim or just that the hayfever and training week took alot out of me. I was getting passed alot as though I was standing still .It was only in the last lap that I began to pass cyclist and most of the athletes were on the run course.

My T2 was pretty quick .Just got my shoes on and off I went.The run was good and it was 4 laps of 5km .I did the first lap in just over 26mins and the rest consistently in 29 plus mins .My last 3 laps were just 30 secs apart in pace so I was very pleased with the consistentcy rather than the time of 1.55 .It was hot out on the course and I did not have any cramping issues which was good. I took a total of 5 gels and about 100gms of gatorade( for the run and cycle) and coke and sports drink on the run so i think I had the nutrition about right .I did get the consistentcy wrong as squirting the concentrate and mixing it with water was always not a perfect system .I had a bit of stomach pain but nothing terribly debilitating.

I finished strongly but was glad it was over. I did have a really sore throat and probably a bit of an infection in the chest and throat as it really was hard swallowing in the evening.

Overall it was always a training brick session and I am glad I did it but wished I had put on a stronger swim and bike time .I do feel I am overdone as far as training goes and I think I just need to slowdown before Busselton or I will not do too well .
As for swimmimg there aren't any short term solutions. On the positives , there was alot of support on the course and I thanked the volunteers on my last round they did a great job in hot conditions. I passed lots of runners and felt good throughout the run. Despite the slowbike time I kept to threshold of between 140 -155 bpm.

I got alot of support from the crowd who mainly thought I was a kiwi athlete because of my black trisuit and I was announced as a Swiss triathlete by Simon Beaumont at the finish line.Apologies to the Swiss Team. Most importantly despite the poor swim time I survived and wasn't last in my age group. Congratulations to Lyold Ngoh who had cramps on the run but had a good swim 1.04 and finished 3 mins ahead of me . The other Singapore competitor did a credible 5.43 but never got to meet her (Jacklyn Lim) .

I will try to get some pics posted soon .