Challenge Bahrain was the biggest race of my career yet and one to remember.
I finished University for the year at the end of October. So most of November was dedicated to training camp, dubbed the best training camp of all time by Pilone courtesy of our cooking. We were based down in Whagamata where there were no distractions, good hilly riding and plenty of trail running. Thanks Leah, Ashleigh and Rowen for the company!
I traded my single business class ticket for two economy (so as Kris could be my porter). The 28 hour flight into a different time zone was hard. On arrival we were whisked through customs by one of the Sheikhs staff, transported in a VIP Q7 Audi to our 5 star accommodation at the Sofitel. Challenge really pulled out all stops for an amazing race!
With a 500,000 prize purse on offer there came a world class field! My pre race nerves set in a week out! It was pretty amazing to be on the start line with many of the best the sport has to offer. Race day itself didn't go as I'd hoped. It was a solid swim, I started fast to make sure I got on feet. At about half way I realised that the pace we started at, was the pace we were swimming the entire swim at! Although I was off the pace, for me I was happy with a 24 minute swim. The bike course went down the completely closed 3 lane wide highway. I tried to pick up the pace at around 20km but unfortunately didn't have another speed. It made for a long remaining 70km. The run course was awesome, through a wild life park, we ran with ostriches, deer and monkeys.
Nothing in my race went drastically wrong. It was just one of those days where I felt a particularly flat, I didn't have the race day or even hard session fight in me.
I finished up 11th, just missed out on a piece of the pie. Not the performance I had hoped for but an incredibly valuable experience!
Bring on Auckland 70.3
(The last one before it moves to Taupo.)
Cheers to Blueseventy and Cyco for your help!