Sunday, September 20, 2009

After the final race on the Gold Coast

Now a run through of whats been going on since I claimed Bronze in 2009 in the ITU World Triathlon Series.
I spent 4 extra days on the Gold Coast after the race. We went to Sea World, Byron Bay and had my nephew, Dylan's 1st birthday in Broad Beach with my family and Laurent, his mum and his brother who came to Australia to see the World Champs. From the Gold Coast, we flew back to France (Sète) where I did a small training week to prepare for my 2 last triathlons in 2009.
I raced in La Baule in the final race of the French Grand Prix Series (French club racing) on 26th September where I had a pretty good race. I exited the water in the top 5 and felt strong but not fast, the whole race. I had lost my top end fitness from my week off training and with the long travel, but I managed to be still in with a chance right until the final sprint.

The results were - all finishing within a few seconds of each other.
Anja Dittmer GER 1st
Carole Peon FRA 2nd
Andrea Hewitt NZL 3rd
Jodie Swallow GBR 4th

© Photos : Jonathan Metge

My team, Beauvais triathlon, won the overall 5 race series. We had finished 2nd the past 2 years I have raced but this year we were dominant with a stronger team - Huge Felicitations!

The following week I had 4 days back in Sète with no training. Then I went to Gruissan, a small windy town near Narbonne, trained for 2 days with the Beauvais Triathlon girls and raced on Saturday. We came together for the last time in 2009 for the Coupe de France (team time trial). I was joined by Hollie Avil, Anja Dittmer, Delphine Pelletier and Charlotte Morel, an all round solid team and as only 3 are required to finish together at the end, we swam and biked as a team then split up on the run and I crossed the line with Hollie and Anja. My favourite part of the race was when we passed the Beauvais mens b team on the bike, which I will remind Nicolas of always. We won the race, we got our advantage on the bike with the fastest bike split and were the only girls team to go under 1 hour for the 750m swim / 20km bike / 5km run. My 2009 Triathlon season was over..

After Gruissan, I took a break with Laurent for 2 weeks. We went to Paris for 2 nights and Laurent took me to see Versailles. The gardens are amazing, stunning and so huge, our legs were dead after seeing the beautiful Trianon Estate, so we paid for a ride back in the petit train. In Paris we stayed in the new BLC Design hotel. As we walked into the hotel, it was a bit blinding. I had never seen a place so white before. Everything is white, the walls, floor, reception, everything inside the rooms including every piece of furniture, all.
After, we returned back to Sète by train then we drove to Italy. We stayed with a friend, Guillaume in Piacenza, who works as a french baker. He took us to Brescia and Milano (which is Italian for Milan - names are different in Italy which we found confusing, as we got lost in Genova for 30min. I found out that it's difficult to navigate with a French map when most of the place names aren't spelt the same).
We spent the the last night in Gallarante where I visited Milani Cycles. I had the opportunity to see the complete range of Milani bikes which is really something, from top level carbon bikes, to their top steel bikes and their original city bikes. They miss nothing, 100% care is taken right down to the small details on each bike's paint finish. I will ride the new N109 in 2010. The actual colour of the N109 design is grey/white/red but I chose to custom my bike's colours to violet/white/black. I just have a short wait, it will take 6 weeks to make. I will have my new Milani before I head back home in December.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Podium in the 2009 World Championship Series

I have put together my best season of triathlon. I raced the most consistent I have ever raced. If anyone asked me at the beginning of the year, my goal was to finish on the World Championship podium. And yesterday I achieved it with a 3rd place finish in the Series.
The Gold Coast final race did not go the way I had hoped though. I had a good start in the swim, but I followed the wrong feet after the first bouy and I was taken off course for a bit before returning on the right track and then right in the middle of the group. I was dragged further back by the close swimming of this pack and eventually there was a split and I was in the 2nd pack starting the bike leg. We were only 20 seconds behind the 7 leaders but at the beginning there was no structure at all to work together to begin the chase. The most frustrating of all was the fact there were 4 New Zealanders together but we had no tactics. Each of us were individuals out there. I was the most vocal I had ever been in a race. I got so annoyed each time someone rode up near the front and sat 2nd or 3rd wheel and was not prepared to pull through. Anyway, the group worked together at odd times throughout the bike and we managed to be just under 1 minute behind as we entered T2.

I thought the run course would be draining with the long straights and the fact that you were able to see the girls out on the road in front but I actually enjoyed it. I ran in a group which caught Sarah Groff USA and then just at the finish I caught Jess Harrison FRA. I ran 35.07 for the 10km and finished in 8th place. I had no energy in the sprint, my legs were going as fast as they could so I was pushing forward with my arms. It was 2 hours of complete effort. And I found out as I was escorted to the interviews that I had done enough to keep my 3rd place ranking.
I was the bronze medalist of the 2009 World Championship Series, calculated with the following races:
31st May 1st in Madrid (photo finish - I won by 0.03 of a second!)
21st June 6th in Washington DC
12th July 3rd in Kitzbuhel (Austria)
22nd August 2nd in Yokohama (Japan)
13th September 8th in Gold Coast (Australia)

Overall 2009 World Championship Series Points:
1. Emma MOFFATT AUS 4340
2. Lisa NORDEN SWE 4130
3. Andrea HEWITT NZL 3462
4. Daniela RYF SUI 3187
5. Helen JENKINS GBR 3173
6. Sarah HASKINS USA 3139
7. Juri IDE JPN 2477
8. Magali Di MARCO SUI 2422
9. Jessica HARRISON FRA 2365
10.Annabel LUXFORD AUS 2191