Sitting here writing this race report, it’s safe to say it’s almost more of a surprise to me than it is to you.
After my race last month in France, it didn’t seem like I would be able to get onto the start list for a race until much later in the year. To be honest about it too it had bummed me out a bit, and I may have been having a bit of a sulk about it at the start of the week.
Obviously it’s okay to be frustrated or have a sulk, but I think they should be short and sweet. When I woke up the next day I knew I had to try change that, so I didn’t sleep in, got up early, and went out to train.
By the time I got home I got a call from my coach letting me know I’d just ended up on the start list for the Magog World Cup in Quebec, Canada and to see if I was interested in doing it! Safe to say this took care of the elongated sulk pretty quickly. On Monday I was sulking but by Tuesday I was stoked and on Wednesday afternoon I was in Canada for the race, which was on Saturday.
While this late start meant we hadn’t planned for it in training, it also had the bonus of me not having mentally built up to it, and I could go in with zero expectations except be grateful I was able to turn up to race. It also being my first race for the 12-month qualification period coming into the Tokyo 2020 Paralympics was pretty sweet too.
Having come over to Canada last year, and this being my first international race 12 month ago, it was great to look at how far I’d come in a lot of ways in 12 months. I still know very little about Triathlon, but last year I knew absolutely nothing! I knew you swam, cycled and ran, that was the extent of it.
The few days away was good practice at learning to travel and race by myself, something I haven’t done before, as I can rely on my coach quite a bit to take care of everything. OK, so she may have booked my flights…and airport transfers…but whilst my bike took a bit of a battering in transit I did manage to get myself here in one piece so let’s all just take a minute to appreciate that.
Race plan and processes good to go it was time to race. Was very happy to find out that because the water was 25 degrees, we were on for a non wet suit swim. Firstly because I love swimming in the open water without one, and secondly because my wetsuit may or may not have a few two many holes in it to be considered water proof.
Off we went and while I wasn’t happy with my start from the siren I was happy with the swim overall, coming out towards the front of the group, with a quick T1 it was time for the bike. Crazy to think last year was the first time I’d raced on a Time Trial bike, and with cycling shoes, the same bike, but definitely not the same athlete, thanks to some solid guidance and my new cycling prosthetic.
A real enjoyable ride for the race, a bit of “to and froing” with a few different athletes, just love going head-to-head like that on race day.
Off onto the run after an average T2 and I felt really good, running off with a few other guys. This was a big factor in not getting too excited and going like a bull at a gate straight off and blowing out at the end. Just running the race like I had planned and see what happens.
Managed to get a few scalps in the process, and finished up the day in 6th place! As always a few things to take away and work on in training, but overall a very successful weekend. Every race is different so it’s always hard to compare times and results, but to look back on the, let’s face it, absolute mess of an athlete I was 12 months ago, to where I’m at today is amazing. I had shaved a whopping 8+ minutes off last years result. I'm stoked.
I have always been very well aware that things can change, good or bad very quickly. That turn around from a sulky Monday afternoon, to be sitting at the airport on Sunday night chuffed with the result and experience, is a great reminder of no matter how good or bad it is, it can change just like that!