Before I digress....to the race. It was an exciting, but unusual format of 300m swim/10k bike/2k run with prelims and finals. First 10 in each heat automatically go through to the finals and then the next 5 fastest times. Super-fast racing. I was looking forward to a good workout and sharperner for our next French Grand Prix Race this coming weekend.
The first heat went great. I sat on Ali Brownlee's (British Olympian) feet for the entire swim to exit the water 2nd. Got onto the bike and felt great. Ali attacked up the hill, and no one followed, so I chased, and chased, and chased. No one would work with me and I had to pull the group around for most of the 10k bike. I had a good next transition and started the run off fast. I was running comfortably in 3rd, so I backed off to conserve a little energy for the final (which started 40 min after our race). A german dude must have forgotten that there are no points for the prelim when he sprinted past me at the line....no problem, an easy 4th and moving to the finals!
Ohh, the final. This was not the time or the place to muck up the transitions. I had a good swim (other than getting breastroke-kicked in the eye socket around the first buoy), and excited the water 5th or so. Onto the bike, I made the same mistake as the first race, but this time Will Clarke (another British Olympian) attacked when I was putting on my shoes during the hill and broke up the group. Nobody would chase, so it was fellow FGP athlete, Pete Friedman and I who tried to chase down the lead group of 5. Not possible. We were stuck in no-man's land for the entirety of the bike, only to be swallowed up by the remaining 18-20 riders right before T2. I had good position going into T2, but struggled like never before putting on my shoes. I must have lost 10-15 sec alone in T2. I exited last. Ouch. Not what you want to do in a 2k run, as there is absolutely no room to make any time up. I caught a few guys, but simply couldnt turn my legs over fast enough and ran out of real-estate. I think I was 16th or something. Quite frustrating to say the least.
3 good things from the trip: 1)it was good training 2) I felt really strong 3)I got to see Scotland. Although I nearly missed the trip as I must have a giant target on my back. I got "special attention" at both the US embassy in Paris, and at the UK entry point in Scotland. When the border patrol man takes all of your posessions, says he will be right back, to take a seat, and whatever you do ABSOLUTELY do not move, you tend to get a little nervous.....
Now I am back in St Jean de Monts (via Amsterdam, Paris, St Cloud, Paris, St. Cloud, Paris, Nantes, St Jean). Lets just say that yesterday there was no "training," but I might have set an official world record of sprinting 1k with my bike box (from train to train to embassy to pool to train to train). Time to get some rest, recoup, and roll out this weekend for the FGP!
here is a pic of me leading the last FGP in Setton about 1k into the run