Sunday, December 20, 2009
I have settled into recovery and held a BBQ for a few close friends yesterday to let the hair down and have a few quiet ones. The mid afternoon "do" was just what I needed to officially close my year off and leave it all behind. A reflection of my year will be in the next few blogs, but for now, a fair bit of R&R is taking place.
Training has been on the back burner with only a few runs done, 1 ride, 2 hours on the roadie followed by a fun and 3 hour entertaining ride on the MTB. (Entertaining for Stormy & Jas at my inability to handle to MTB!!!) 2 swims just to tick the arms over is also all that has taken place since WA.
I will have a reasonably solid week leading into Christmas and then relax for the following few days. I, like another blogger Ryan Barnett have asked Santa for a similar present this year; An improved run off the bike!!! I am hoping that mine arrives in March at New Zealand.
As for now, I have started to look at a training schedule and also a few lead in races to New Zealand. I should be able to finalise my schedule by the end of the week. One thing that I am also going to change next year is to post regularly about my training. To post what I have done and how I have felt doing it. A reflection is something that you can do so that you know what you can change in the future.
Wednesday, December 9, 2009
Well I will start from the race and work backwards. So if you are not interested in all the pre race crap, you only have to read my race report:
Ironman #2, Western Australian Ironman #2.
Race day weather: 25-30 kmh winds, temp 32 deg Celsius.
A lot windier and hotter than last year.
With the pier being under construction, it made for a very weird swim start with majority of swimmers choosing to start from the left which made for a swallow start and the minority (like myself) starting closer to the pier, deep water start.
The race started and I found myself in a really good groove early with not many people around me due to the spilt start, however I did know that eventually, there would be some crash and bash. About 600m into the swim where the two groups merged, the crash and bash began. (I still to this day don't know why people engage in this, surely they realise that it is a waste of energy and you lose momentum very quickly??) Obviously not, so trying to avoid this, I slowed down to the rear of the pack so that I would continue to get dragged through the water without having to fight for position. This tactic worked fr me, as I found myself passing swimmers at a regular rate up to the end of the pier.
Race Plan #1: Stay out of trouble in swim - Check
So, after reaching the end of the pier and heading back towards Tera firma, I was unsure which direction to take, last year I took the most direct route, with minimal others. This year I decided to be a sheep and follow the pack. The thought process was hopefully a few stronger swimmer were towing my pack along and I would continue to get a good drag. I would only know the answer of this once I got to the end of the swim. A bit more crash and bash occurred in the later part of the swim, but nothing to worry me. Once I got the beach and stood up, I looked at my watch and saw 56 min 35 sec with only the short beach run to go til transition.
Actual swim time: 57min 03 sec, 30th in my age (Yes 30th, a lot of good swimmers)
I was very happy with my swim and once in and out of transition 1min 57 sec (Fastest in age) I was on the bike.
Race Plan #2: On the bike in under 1 hour - Check
So onto the bike, trying to get some sort of gauge of where I was at. The only time that I would be able to find this was by a turn around, so I decided to follow the same plan as last year and ride solid for the first hour until I found a position that I was content with. Managed to get the first 40k done in 1 hour and 35 sec. Perfect, everything was feeling right and my race plan was once again falling into place. I found myself riding with the second age group pack and when I saw the leading age group pack not far up the road, I decided that I would rather ride with them, also seeing a few Category "c" riders in the second pack, I knew that I need time at the start of the run to be any chance.
So, halfway through the second lap, I rode away from the pack and rode up to the leading age groupers. The remaining lap on the bike was making sure that nutrition was still going in as the weather was heating up and I wanted to make sure that I had a good amount (without going overboard) for the start of the run. Coming in to T2, I composed myself to make sure, no mistakes were to be made so close to the end of the bike with a tough marathon to come.
Actual Ride time: 4hrs 43min 43sec (1st in age group and 16th overall)
Race Plan #3: Enter T2 with leading age groupers: Check
So with a smooth T2, I was off on the marathon, sitting 3rd in my age, 30th overall. I had no idea of this until later in the day, after my support crew was receiving regular updates from a lot of you informing of my actual position on course. I was confident of running faster than last year even though the conditions this year were tougher. Everything was going smooth in the run, with nutrition and how my legs were feeling until the 25k mark. Things started to get really tough at that stage. The weather started to get to me and my decision making about nutrition and when to walk, when to run, became quite unclear. So after regular encouraging from athletes and supporters I composed myself to just get to an aid station, walk and consume, walk and consume, then plod to the next one and repeat the process.
At the commencement of the final lap, Carla informed me that I was still in 3rd with 1st and 2nd not far up the road and if I held firm I should be able to hold on. Heading towards the final turnaround point, I actually had visions of many Ironman races where you see a leader slow to a walk. I gained some confidence as I passed a fellow "c" category athlete which meant I was into 2nd. Never ever would I have thought that this was possible. I pushed on, maybe too hard and just as I approached the turn around point I was passed and was back into 3rd. This did no faze me as all I had to do was keep "hanging in there". I started to look for other athletes on the return to see how much time I had on them (this is a sign of weakness and my only mistake for the day.....JUST WORRY ABOUT MY OWN RACE!!!) Never will this be repeated again.
So just to aid station, I walked, consumed and consumed some more: Water, Ice, Cola, Ice etc. With having no idea of how much time I had between myself and 4th, I started to really suffer and found myself walking between aid stations. Once again I received support from fellow athletes and supporters. Benny, coming the other direction handed me some ice and told my that if I wanted the Kona spot, I had to move my ass. I ran/walked/ran/walked as best I could. Coming to the 2nd last aid station, I was still in 3rd position, however I knew that the time gap was closing, and I tried to keep going.
Ok, this is where it gets really hard:
Within the final 1.5k being still in 3rd, this didn't last for long. Little did I know, there was another battle happening behind me with 2 guys in my age group, racing each other for the last part of the run. So, by the time they caught me, the pace was just too fast for me to stay with. I knew that I had fallen into 5th place and was determined not to drop any more spots. It would not have done me justice to finish any lower than 5th.
Coming into the finish chute, mixed emotions started to run through my mind, knowing that my Automatic Kona spot was within 1.5k from the finish and I felt like I dropped it. I crossed the line in:
9hrs 23min 03sec with a run time of 3hrs 38min 13sec.
So a Pb overall by 3min 47 sec and a run pb of 3min 8 sec. Now how could I be disappointed?
The fact that Kona was only 1 min in front of me?? What about the poor guy who beat in the sprint and missed by 7 sec??
From 2nd to 5th, the gap was only 3min 40sec. So close after so long.
I have replayed the race over and over in my head since then to try and find the lost minute.....Can I????
No, I had another perfect race day with a PB in 2 legs and overall. I managed to also finish 36th overall. Not bad for my 2nd Ironman.
Will this affect me mentally? NO CHANCE, just gives me more drive and motivation.
My plans from here are to blog about the pre-race week including my Top 10 Favourite moments. I will have a few weeks off to recover then sit down and plot a race schedule leading into IRONMAN NZ.
I am also considering a Triathlon Running coach, to assist me in the later part of the marathon. So If there is anyone out there interested, drop me a line to discuss.
Other than that, nothing will be changing for me. I train to race and enjoy what I do, having a great result proves that you can enjoy the sport and get results.
Too many people stress about minor issues that gives them excuses for under performances.
Thursday, December 3, 2009
Thursday, November 19, 2009
Sunday, November 8, 2009
I can sit here and say that now, however come Sunday, I know I will be out to race....that's what I do, race in races. The lead up I can control, either have a few days recovery or train right up til Saturday morning. With one minor hiccup of late, having a few days rest is prob what I need, so a small recovery week is the most likely scenario.
I don't know what to expect, have had a really good previous 4 weeks and am the fittest that I have ever been. In saying that, I should be!!!
Another thing that has popped up for me is the forecast weather for Shepparton....41 degrees!! What the??? So to race this race with no after affects will be difficult, I don't want to lose any training days post this race. I think a very adhoc week will be planned and decisions will be made as Sunday comes closer.
A MASSIVE congratulations to Jason Quigley, great mate, training partner and myo for places 3rd overall is his debut 12 hour Mountain Bike race. Things also looking like they are going in the right direction for his 24 hour solo race at the end of November. Well done mate!!!!
Still doesn't give me any incentive to ride with him in the "off season" due to the fact that now he is fitter, I will have no chance of surviving the ride.
Ps.....Carla is home on Wednesday, so I will be able to catch up on goss from Hawaii in more detail. Missed you :-)
Monday, November 2, 2009
Fatigue is kicking in, legs are constantly hurting......but I have to go on, I have to get up early and train and I have to back up of an afternoon. Running is helping alot, however it is building the fatigue.
The last two weeks have been run after run, after.....yes, you guessed it....run!! I can say that I am enjoying and looking forward to my runs, in hope (maybe pray) that it pays off this year and I can hold a solid marathon.
Seeing a few lads out on the weekend proves that to get the the start line, you have to do the k's. To get to the finish line, you have to hurt!!!! And I am hurting. This morning's swim hurt, this afternoon run, it hurt. My muscles are aching, BUT I AM LOVING THIS!!! I can't get enough, my focus is purely on the race day, WA Ironman in December. Somewhere in between I get another year older, have a Half Ironman to do and still have to work. Those things are only in the back half of my mind, the forefront is the Ironman.
Questions that continually run through my mind, answers that only race day can give. Patience that is needed to find those answers.
All I can do for now is keep training, when I hurt, I want to hurt more, I want to continue to train. I am really starting to include other training partners who are not doing such a big race and are out for a cruisy training ride, just to make sure I am going. NO EXCUSES!!
The weather has turned for the best and the cafe riders are out in their droves....for me, it is off to the deadest slowest roads that I can find (And I have found a few!!!!) not only to work the body, but to work the mind. Getting the mind used to nothing, absolutely nothing but the job at hand. No wandering off into "happy places", these roads are not fun, no happy thoughts, just the job in front of me.
I don't think that I have hit my peak fitness to date, but am not far away.
Tomorrow, being a public holiday, enables me to endure more time in the saddle, pounding the pavement and catching some rays in the pool.
The Ironman cannot come quick enough, I am looking forward to it and the pain it is going to dish up to me.
Tuesday, October 20, 2009
Last year I thought I ran, but didn't. I mean I did the occasional run, about 2-3 times a week for a max of 2 hr 20min for the whole preparation for Ironman. I understood why this happened, as my coach then wanted to look after my larger frame. And I must say, it worked for me.
My focus last year was my ride and ride only and spent approx 75-80% of my training time in the saddle with approx 10% spent on the other two disciplines.
This approach was fantastic for last year as I was a newbie to the sport and had no idea of how my body was going to stand up.
Now I feel that I have been promoted to Rookie!!! Still no nothing and have experience of 1 whole race, even though if I could repeat that race every time I would be pleased.
Aside from this, a bloke named Lance did write a book titled: It's not all about the bike. I know after reading this book, it has nothing to do with Triathlons, however the title is relevant to the sport. Also, some other guy that I train with did mention the same thing!!
So, after churning out 7 hours in 4 days running and regular 2 hour Tuesday sessions, my running has improved a great deal. My speed has not changed much, however my endurance is building more and more every session.
The ratio of sessions is still favoured by the bike, however the run has taken a large chunk of the pie and would be up around 35-40% of training time now. The swim is still on the back burner as I see many an athlete swim like a fish but have nothing for the two main aspects of the race. A sub hour swim is all that I am after, and then make time on the other two legs.
I have also been punished on the mag trainer the previous two nights and have found this to be beneficial at this time of training. I have left it late, as I usually do, so that I don't get sick of the monotonous aspect of this training. All is on track for now, even my weight has dropped below the 92kgs mark, which means I am on track to get down to 90kgs or just below come race day. Weight is not my main priority, no special diets for me, still a few frothies also. Still have to enjoy training to want to do it.
Sunday, October 18, 2009
Ain blew out to an 11hr + Ironman after a 1hour swim and 4hr 31min ride.
The above 3 who all raced at Kona is enough for me to say that Size doesn't matter, yes it helps being a little smaller, but you can only use what you are equipped with. Too many people make excuses for under performance, "lost my nutrition" "bike failure" "went to hard on the bike" etc. However, you don't hear many bigger people complain cause of their size, they just get on with the job at hand, even if it is slowly!!
Wednesday, October 14, 2009
After reading and hearing about how tough the WORLD IRONMAN CHAMPIONSHIPS are, I don't think I had any idea about it. It is something you have to experience to appreciate, even just as a spectator. With the temperature soaring to 44 deg out on the Queen K Hwy, it is something that reading about will never give justice.
My week was magnificent watching the best apply their trade and all the age groupers strutting their stuff, and the strutting was everywhere. And not just the strutting, the bling bling was also out in full force. Many thousands of $$$$$ were on display.
Inspiration and admiration are the first two words that come to mind in thinking about race day and the competitors. Motivation is one that soon follows along with determination. I will start with inspiration first. By seeing all the "handicapped" athletes start the race all the way to finish the race was phenomenal. The following two athletes are a prime example:
The athlete left: Rudy Garcia-Tolson. He has no hamstrings or quads, the only muscles he has from his knee to hip are his gluts. Unfortunately, Rudy didn't make the bike cut off, no surprising due to this fact.
This other athlete was obviously feeling the pain, however, he finished. An amazing effort for the day.
Friday, October 9, 2009
Thursday, October 8, 2009
The plane flight was good, with no hassles. During the flight I started to get excited about the fact that I am not only going to see Carla in action, also I am going to see the best of the best apply their trade in the sport I am involved in.
I will be trying to get ideas of how the pros and others leaders do what they do. Also a goal is to try and obtain photos with as many as these superhumans as I can!!
Anyway off for breakfast, then back to the airport for the next leg into Hawaii, then over to Kona. Hoping to be there at about 11pm tonight.
Wednesday, October 7, 2009
The work has been done now for her, and it is just a matter of looking back at the work she has done. I am excited to see Carla finish and will be giving her plenty of encouragement along the way!!
Komo confirmed this last year and has given me some words of wisdom. This will give me more inspiration seeing someone so close to me going to where I want to get to.
I will keep updating my journey, starting with tonight in NZ if I can get PC access, and also will be using my trigger finger to take plenty of pics.
Monday, October 5, 2009
This year is harder. Goals have been set and expectations need to be fulfilled. Training has to be done no matter what, no excuses. I have to get up at 4am to get quality in, I have to do sessions in the evening instead of relaxing. Last year, I didn't have to, so I didn't. If I was sore at all, tired or couldn't be bothered, that's all the excuses I needed no to train
However, after my performance last year at WA I have personal expectations that I want to exceed, goals I want to achieve. I am currently tired and fatigue, this just makes me want to train harder at the moment. I am preparing for what I call two hour Tuesday. This is my 2nd long run for the week consisting of a minimum of 2 hours with intervals or hills in there somewhere. 2 hour Tuesday usually follows a 3-4 hour morning ride. Legs are toasted by the end.
My training as been going well with clocking up good consistent quality k's atm with December 5th continually driving me along the way. My weight has dropped under 92kgs and is heading in the right direction. I have been given some quality nutritional advice rather than just starving myself...WTF?!?!? Advice that makes a difference in what I eat, when I eat it and how it is prepared.
The time is currently 7.30pm and today I have been on the bike, pounding the pavement and splashing in the water. Another day in which I have made gains and enjoyed the outcome. Tomorrow is a different day, one in which I am looking for the conclusion before it starts.
I have been following another blog: http://caughtontherun.blogspot.com/ about another "larger" guy (93.5kgs) who has recently qualified for Kona and will have completed 3 Ironmans in 10 weeks. He is another that gives me motivation. If h can, so can I. Who said size matters??
Sunday, September 27, 2009
I know a balance between the both is probably the best results, however, when you have training partners that are flexible with the schedule and you can utilize each other or groups, the result is usually more productive. At times I know that without a training partner, no matter if there is a program in front of me or not, I would not be able to complete a session, let alone get some quality out of it.
So, I pose the question, how many people waste money on a program that they do not entirely follow for one reason or another?? During my short life at this sport, there are very few who can say that the program is the only training they will do and not budge from that.
I am lucky enough to have developed a good training network, that covers all three disciplines and enables me to be flexible to change sessions to get some really good quality training in. In saying this, a few solo sessions with podsy (Ipod) can be rather refreshing.
I can see the benefit from having a coach for advice etc, but it is really a coach that you need, or just a mentor?? Someone to write you a program or someone you can call when things are not quite right or for re-assurance? A GOOD coach will be able to do both of these, and should be able to also. I have found that many coaches these days are going to quantity of athletes trying to develop a large group to line their pockets $$$$. I know this is a job for many, but a coach is someone who is more than a boss, it should be a partnership to achieve the goals you want.
So this brings me back to my topic, what is more important?? A Program or Partner? For me, I'll take training partners every day.
With this, my training this year to date has been more productive and consistent than the previous two years as I can call on a variety of people with a variety of levels to achieve what I want. I have also been able to have minimal time off the track due to injuries as I have not been involved in EGO training in which training becomes too competitive regulary and the chance of injuries rises and enjoyment lowers.
So for now, I have no reason to change and will follow this theory until my performance tells me otherwise. With 10 weeks to go until Ironman Western Australia, my focus is on what I can do and not I can't due to poor training scheduling. Anyway, off to finish the weekend with another solid afternoon.
Tuesday, September 22, 2009
Now, onto the latest and greatest news: ROD STORMONTH has decided to make a comeback to Ironman Triathlons, declaring that Western Australia 2010 is his comeback race. This excites me also, due to the fact that there will be 4 of us in the same area all training for Ironman racing. What more would you want out of training partners, i ask?? We both know that it will a long journey for Rod as it is all of us, but the fact that I/We will be able to draw enthusiasm from each other like I do with my other training partners should also make training even more enjoyable, if possible.
So where am I at? Well, training is going well and I have surrounded myself with purely positive people. As the saying goes, being positive breeds positive and likewise for the reverse. So for now I have positive people around me who are getting great results and is giving me more excitement/ inspiration every day.
Jason, myotherapist and training partner finished 3rd in his category on the weekend in the Australian Marathon Championships held in Bendigo over 105km. This was on his trusty stead, the MTB. Great effort that!!
Carla, another training partner and G/F, is currently in Cairns on her final training/acclimatisation before she heads across to the BIG DANCE at Kona.
If you cannot draw anything positive from achievements like these, you never will.
And for me, just trying to do the hard k's now to hopefully make it easier come race day.
Consistent training has been my motto so far and everything has been coming along well, with ups and downs along the way. The 4.30am starts have been good, haven't got me just yet, however in saying that, am looking forward to a sleep in, when ever that might be. I have re-equated myself with the ocean for cold water recovery sessions, and that is just what they are - COLD!!! However the legs do love it.
Anyway, will blog more regular in the coming weeks.
Saturday, September 5, 2009
12 weeks til IRONMAN WA.
- Time to put the head down and leave all the excuses at the front door each day.
- Time to focus on what is ahead and not what is in the passed, too many people hang their hat on previous performances and not worry about the next one.
- Time to capitalize on the winter training that I have done (and some that I haven't) and take the next step to be in IRONMAN condition.
- Time to pull all resources out for training.
- Time to get serious.
Enough of the small talk, I often hear people talk it up and not do anything about it. For me, the 12 week mark has hit and the focus has taken over.
My first Ironman Journey was really exciting last year and I hope to follow the same path to get the same result this year.
For those out there who give me support through training, recovery and morally, the time has come to step up and do it all again. I look forward to the same journey again this year.
Now a small recap on the previous few weeks:
Well, after competing at Yeppoon and being happy with my result, the following weekend I cruised down to Hazlewood pondage to compete in a 1.5k swim, 36k ride and 8k run. Cutting to the chase I was happy with that race also backing up 1 week after Yeppoon.
THE SWIM - About time I had a decent swim, still a long way off getting the best out of my open water swimming, however, I had a little bit of advice from a friend about just think that it is me out there and forget about the others. So I swam solo the whole time, probably cost me a little bit of time, however got through in a good time.
16min 59 sec
THE RIDE - Was another solid ride for me, legs started to get heavy towards to end, positive was that no one passed me on the bike and motored passed a lot.
56min 17 sec 6th overall
THE RUN - Once again happy here, due to the 1km hill climb each of the 2 laps, which drained my legs in the second lap. Legs starting to get stronger on the run, don't get me wrong, still a long way off the pace, but improving all the same.
OVERALL - Another solid performance, placing 4th in my age after starting the run is 1st place. Was a good field with a lot of the athletes fine tuning for the World Champs this month.
Since this race I have been a little slack just doing enough to maintain fitness and nothing more, so nothing to really report here.
The story all starts again.
Tuesday, August 18, 2009
Monday, August 17, 2009
Sunday, August 16, 2009
Saturday, August 15, 2009
Thursday, August 13, 2009
Wednesday, August 12, 2009
Monday, August 3, 2009
Thursday, July 23, 2009
Monday, July 20, 2009
Sunday, July 12, 2009
Wednesday, July 1, 2009
I raced in asics 2140 prior to the Ironman and had no reason to change, so decided to run the marathon in the same shoes. My feet blistered badly, which, by never running a marathon previously I thought was normal. After chatting to a few fellow athletes (if I can be classed as one!) this was not a normal thing and had a few suggestions about changing my footwear. So since then I have been on the hunt for the elusive running shoe.
Sunday, June 28, 2009
Was the perfect day to make the transition due to the weather and also a few of the top "A" grade riders at Footscray were absent. In saying this, the winner of the 3 Day Tour was racing and so to was a Porsche Drapac rider.
So after watching Komo win "C" Grade in a sprint finish, I was quite motivated to have a real crack also. Mainly just to hang on was the goal, but if I was feeling ok, would try and involve myself in the race.
The traditional 1st lap under control, then the race began with a breakaway instantly. The difference with this breakaway compared to "B" grade is that it was likely to stay away. So after a short time, the pack reeled in the 2 escapees. Soon after 5 riders went up the road and the bunch let them go, I got caught in no mans land so decided to find a tempo and see what happened. Soon after 1 rider joined me and we were working turns together, but not making inroads to the leaders.
Another 2 riders joined us and together we decided to have a good crack at chasing the 5 riders up the road. Slowly but surely we started to close the gap and when another rider soon joined not long after 5 chasing 5 become a positive prospect. This continued for a good 15 min and as we were about the close the gap, one of the riders in our group hit us hard and bridged the gap to the leader, so 4 chasing 6 became harder. A further 15min in, we managed to bridge the gap and as soon as this happened the pace intensified and my legs exploded. GONE!!!
I had to sit and wait for the bunch which took 1 complete lap to pick me up and which then the race was over. I continued to work turns for the remainder of the race. Our bunch were again catching the leaders, however as we were losing riders, the bunch became unsettled until we decided to just finish the race off and put it down to experience. Which I did.
For me, to mix it with riders of "A" Grade has given me plenty of confidence moving forward. My final position was 10th and which an average speed of just over 42kph for the 1hr 15min, I am very excited about where my cycling is at. After yesterday 4hour ride and 90min run to be able to get across the line shows that I am in a good place right now. Throw in a 13k+ swim week and things are going well.
Still injury free and loving this training caper. Only 8 weeks til Yeppoon 1/2 Ironman which will show how my progress has gone (if any) since I have been coaching myself.
Tuesday, June 23, 2009
The course around Granite road is tough at the best of times, throw in a nasty cross wind and the only place you wanted to be was at the pointy end. I stumbled across this by shear luck due to working turns and at one stage having a peak behind me to find that 8 of us had opened up about a 1 minute gap on the field, only due to the wind. We were cuaght by the group due to having to stop for traffic at an intersection. So after this little exercise I decided to organise a few riders to have a go intot he next cross wind to break up the bunch. This worked for me as I thought, less people in the climbs, less attacks that will hurt me.
So by the 45km mark (halfway) a group of 7 of us had dropped the majority of the field and decided that if we were going to be successful, we had to work together. This worked over the remaining climb until 2 more riders fell by the way side and left 5 of us. My biggest challenge was to hang on over the climb and from there I knew that I would finish with the leaders.
I hung tight until the top and then decided to discuss tactics with Matt (sprinter). He was happy to hear this as we both knew he was by far the best sprinter of the 5 of us, being a track rider by nature.
The 5 of us worked well together till around 15km to go when a few small attacks started to happen, my legs were hurting and I knew that for me to get to the finish line I had to dictate the pace and tempo. I told the boys that I would lead them out and they could fight the sprint amoungst themselves, this seemed to settle them down. I went to the front and tempo'd with the wind at a good speed to dissallow any further attacks. Coming into the finish I peeled off with about 400m to go (prob bit early!) but my legs were gone. I watched from a far to see Matty take the chocolates.
See race report below:
B-Grade decided to start today’s race with an unusual display of cordiality, starting at a moderate pace and not causing any mayhem; until the first corner of course! From then on it was a struggle in the crosswinds, with many riders blowing up in the scramble to stay in the safety of the first 8 or so riders and one by one some very out of breath riders fell by the wayside. With the hills looming, the pace rose another notch, and the dreaded Granite Road ascent saw the field pared down to about 10 riders. Surprisingly, after surviving the attacks on the climb, the group split into two on the descent, so by the time riders were returning to climb through the hills once more, the race leaders had made enough ground on the chasers to be clear. The five leaders then settled down to some co-operative riding until they approached the finish, when a few riders tried to make a break for it, but once they approached the line no-one could compete with the unbelievable speed of Matthew Heath’s sprint, taking the race in convincing fashion over Paul Kenny and Scott Pilson. 28 year old Heath, from Tarneit, is returning to cycling after taking a 5 year break from the pressures of cycling, having previously raced in A-grade and having represented Victoria in the Track Nationals. He only returned to cycling after a shoulder injury in a car accident prevented him from going to the gym, and he decided to dust off the bike and found himself enjoying it enough to return to competitive cycling.
1st Matt Heath, 2nd Paul Kenny, 3rd Scott Pilson, 4th Chris Pescott, 5th Xavier Coppock.
So with this, I know that I am starting to find some good legs and look forward to the next few weeks of training before Yeppoon, 8 weeks away.
I have increased my swimming to be consistently punching out 10k + per week and after a little foot injury, have started the road back on the running also.
My weight is a steady 93kgs, only 1/2 kg above Ironman weight. SO all things are positive.
Friday, June 12, 2009
Yes I did have the legs, my legs felt great in fact,
No, I didn't spend to many pennies on the previous stages.
So, it all came down to the 27.5k TT, with me giving a 40second start to the leader and sitting in 8th before the final stage. What was also interesting was that 10 riders were all within 1 minute of the leader going into the final TT, with this in mind many placings were up for grabs and the podium was not sorted.
In the morning of the final stage, I actually found myself rather nervous due to the expectations that this race was well and truly within reach for me, just needed a good TT and no mishaps.
I started well and managed to pass 3 riders withing the first 5-6k and was on track to record a good time, with not knowing who was riding well behind me, I just had to focus on what I could do and hopefully the the rest would take care of itself.
Into the 2nd lap I had already passed 5-6 riders and feeling good at this stage. After looking at my clock I set myself a goal of breaking 40min for the 27.5k. With this in mind I was sure that the others riders would not be able to complete such a time and that I would be right up there in the finish. So, passing2 more riders in the final lap and having the motivation of the time, I really drove hard.
Also, remembering with Komo said about not having to "run off the bike" this time, there is no reason to leave anything in the tank. Coming up to the finish I stopped the clock in 40.03min (6th overall for the day) with an average speed of 41.2kph. Happy days!!
Waiting until everyone had finished I went to check the results and was informed that I had out rode the rest by 3min 30 sec odd for the stage with meant I won the 3 Day Tour by 2min 40 sec.
Jarrod also had a cracking TT stopping the clock in 39min 36sec (5th overall TT time) to ride himself into 4th overall. A great effort by someone in their first road race. Well done mate, even though we won't hear the end of it now!!
Another result that surprised me was the 2nd placing I managed in the sprint title, finishing on 9 points, 1 behind the winner.
Overall, was a great weekend of Cycling, with this also being the catalyst for my drive to race "A" grade from here on in.