Tuesday, 17 July 2012
2012 Tiszaujvaros ITU Triathlon World Cup
Tiszaujvaros invited us again for a new exciting format of racing- semi and finals racing. After racing similar to this last year as a junior, I was nervous to see what Tiszaujvaros could bring me this year. With 27 girls per heat and only 12 making it to the final.. you had to be on your game from the start.
A late Saturday afternoon race, the morning was just time to warm up the legs and prepare for some fast racing. I was feeling pretty nervous, wondering how hard I would have to go to make it into the top 12- our heat looked like the faster one. A different course to Sunday for the ride and the run it was interesting to see how it panned out. Picking the right hand side of the pontoon, it was the shortest and most efficient line to the first buoy only 110m away. Diving it, I did have the opportunity to use Routier to my left to have a good start. I became complacent, thinking it would be easier than it was to get their near the front. Consequently, I got nailed around the first buoy, getting pulls on my costume, on my legs and getting no where in the forward direction. With so many turn buoys in 750m, it didn’t feel like a clean swim not really finding the rhythm that I wanted. I got stuck on the inside to many times, finding the girls on the outside got a better line. The transition run was long- make it or break it point to making or missing the group. Coming out of T1, my cycling shoe hit the ground, giving me the near heart attack moment of missing the group.
Within the first 1km of the ride we had 12 girls in the main field. Working hard on the way out, the girls were rolling turns well. Going around the u turn, the girls turned so slow, making it tempting to even unclip as it felt so unsafe. Coming back into town the pace slowed down and turning back for our second lap, the pack behind us had caught up. The pace slowed down once again- I think my easy riding pace was quicker. I just looked around to see who was there. Unfortunately, the run had to be faster than what I wanted. Coming off the bike, not having the best T2, the run was quick. Everyone went out at a flying pace like it was a 1km max sprint. I took over a few girls and comfortable sat in 6th to 8th place. With the heat result having no impact on your start position for the race, finishing 8th meant I was through to the final.
Recovery was important- eating, drinking, warming down, ice bath and massage would all effect our result tomorrow.
With a later race on Sunday, a few showers, wet road surface, the more technical ride course became affected, making more bodies ending up on the road. Once again, a late wake up to start the day, an early more ride and a swim in the lake, began Tiszy take 2. I was less nervous, excited to change the mistakes of yesterday. The swim was vital today. Adhesion with a high stroke rate was what I was aiming for especially for the front half of the swim. I started a few places further down the pontoon. I put my head down and got around the first buoy without one knock or pull. Being within the top 5 from the start, I had 3 girls to swim with. A clean, fast swim was what I wanted. Exiting the water, the long transition awaited us again.
A quick T1, there was 6 of us out the front. Getting our feet in quick, we had short time before we make a right hand turn and a u turn. At the u turn there was another 5 girls coming around the corner. Making a pack of about 10 of us, I wanted to stay near the front to stay out of trouble. Seeing only small amounts of the cornering and u turn skills of the girls yesterday, holding wheels out of corners were a struggle. We were rolling turns only with a few girls making the effort. It amazes me that girls just sit in when they know the better runners are coming in the pack behind. Within the first 2 laps we got caught by the chase pack of girls. The pack became the majority of the field. Being up near the front, I got put in the position to work which I didn’t really want to do. By the end of the 6 lap ride course, it was going to be whoever had the best legs to run off the ride.
Starting off the run, the girls went out quick again. I needed to keep my cadence high, keep tall and I suppose move my way up through the field. The course was different to Saturday, having more turns and corners. I was running in 8th to 11th the whole run. I needed to work on my T2 to be up the front from the start. It feels like it has cost me too many times. Jamie told me on the 2nd lap, don’t do this run at a steady rate, either surge away or sit in behind the other girls. I surged alittle but everyone came with me anyways. With a few girls dropping off the pace, I kept within the group I was running with. Coming into the third lap, our group broke up. I could still see the girls just ahead of me who have been and felt like they have had the same distance the whole run. Finishing with a sprint finish for 11th, I achieved the outcomes that I set for the race. I improved my swim from Saturday and had a strong back end to my run. The weekend showed I over did my ride trying to make up for the efforts of the others which consequently affected how I felt on the run.
It is my best world cup finish so far… hopefully soon to crack the top 10!