Last weekend I raced my last race for this trip at the Portland rev3 (half ironman) triathlon. I had planned originally to race Vineman 70.3 this coming weekend but decided not to, more on that in a moment. So the race on the weekend was a tough one, it wasn’t made tough by the course nor the weather but by the fact this was to be my 4th Half ironman in 5 weeks and my body was (is) a tad beaten up. Anyway I still went in to the race with high hopes of a good performance and high hopes of a top 10 as the prize purse was a goodie!! I struggled through the final couple of days and before I knew it I was on the start line. I had a solid swim which I was happy about especially as it was a non wetsuit swim in cold water. I believe I was out in 7th but more important I came out with Jordan Rapp and Michael Lovato, two of the pre race favorites. Both these guys are known for their strong bikes so I thought great I can key off and work with them to reel in the front. Now this would have been the case in almost any other race but on this particular day my legs just didn’t want to play, as much as I tried to ride to my normal standard I just couldn’t. So I had to settle for a very mediocre ride which still saw me pass a few guys but I was also passed by a few guys so I ended up coming off the bike in the same position that I started in. At this point I was thinking, Oh well it’s not my day to put a great performance together but I was still well in the money and I wanted to at least pay for the trip so I kept fighting. I ended up running a solid 1:18 half marathon and again like the cycle leg I passed a couple of guys but unfortunately this time I was passed by a few more guys pushing me down to 9th by the finish. As much as I ideally wanted to be a little higher up the results board (well 8 places up) I am very happy with my performance as I still went sub 4hrs and placed in the money in what was a highly competitive race. As I mentioned I was scheduled to race a half Ironman this weekend which would have meant back to back half Ironman distance races which I believe is great when you come off a big block of training but not at the end of a block of racing so rather than heading to the race and probably performing badly I decided that ending this trip on a high note and not racing was the thing to do.
Reflecting back on this 10 week stint of training and racing in the US I couldn’t be happier I feel I got out exactly what I wanted. As much as I wanted wins and great results this trip was about gaining race experience over a fairly tight schedule which doesn’t necessary lend its self to top performances. Also I wanted to get more comfortable training, traveling and racing around the US as I believe this is very important and an area which people take for granted. They believe they can do what they do at home when away but the reality is that dealing with all those outside stresses like travel, training in strange places, flight delays, car rentals etc is all part of being a pro. Dealing with these things are all part of the job and I do feel I have grown greatly in this area.
I am now back in NZ very tired but super motivated and a lot tougher so I can’t wait to start training and working especially hard on the areas of weakness which this trip has highlighted for me.
Thanks for the support,