Mooloolaba Triathlon Festival
National Age Group Championships Qualifier
It was my first time heading to the Sunshine Coast, making the journey up from Wollongong in the car with my Pop. Watching the Pro's tear up the course in the windy and drizzling conditions on the Saturday for the ITU World Cup had me amped to tackle the course the following day. Mooloolaba was filled with plenty of athlete's eager to see what the weather had install for us come the morning of the race.
Ready to go with a good nights rest, headed down to transition with my bike and gear. The wind was a lot stronger than the day before and the rain was threatening, but holding off for the time being. Setting up transition with racking of bike handlebars less than 5cm apart, gear was all in order ready to go.
Swim ~ Heading down to waters edge, trying to keep a clear mind and focus on the task at hand, knowing if I had any chance of cracking my goal of the top 20 I was going to have to stick to the plan and turn up with a good performance. Watching the Open males set off into the water and the paces they were firing at, this race was not for the faint hearted! 7:38 was my start time, and run to the waters edge seen my goggles around my neck from the dive in. Quickly regathering, I swam hard to the first buoy to try and latch on to the lead pack. Settling into a rhythm I was able to complete my best Non wetsuit swim to date of 22:38 for the 1500M.
Bike ~ Transition out of the water was a descent run to the bikes, filtering through the 55+ age bracket on the way through was quite tricky. Quick transition, seen myself out onto the bike course, trying to get a good momentum going for the initial charge out of the main street itself, climbing the hill out towards the freeway. The rain now drizzling, sitting on a good top end speed with the southerly howling seen all the athlete's flying to the turn around point at the 20KM marker of the course along the freeway. From this point on is what was the determining factor to how badly everyone was willing to suffer and push back into the headwind to finish the bike course. Trying my best not to let my pace drop off, without fatiguing my legs too much knowing I still had the 10KM run course to come! Back into the main street, seen my pace back off taking the turns, as I didn't want to stack after putting in all the hard work for the last hour. 1 hr 5 minute bike split.
Run ~ transition into the run, having quite a quick pace out of transition, managed to maintain it from transition all the way to the crest of the hill at the top of the street leading into the 2 lap run course, before finding a descent rhythm, sitting on a pace that I hadn't held before in a race after riding that hard on the bike course. The 2nd lap of the 5km course seen survival mode set in, and the constant reminder to myself of how badly did I want to qualify!
Finishing with a time of 2:12:24 and securing 14th spot in my age group, with double points towards qualification was better then I could have ever expected. All the hard training with the crew at Project M, and coaching guidance from Nathan Miller had payed off, sticking to the plan, and giving my all.
Great results had by all at the Mooloolaba Triathlon Festival from the Project M Crew Competitors, toughing out the conditions to obtain well earn't qualification points towards the Worlds at Gold Coast for the end of the year! Big thanks to Nathan Miller, and I look forward to continually improving leading into my next lot of races,
Thanks for reading,