My training, racing, things that go through my head, memorable moments, and such.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Gatineau- race report and all other extraneous activities + thoughts

I really liked Gatineau! We arrived Wednesday night in Ottawa, and then took the short drive over the bridge into Gatineau, Quebec. Looking back you could see the Parliament buildings over the river which was pretty cool.
Next couple days were race prep coupled with a couple- or a triple- too many trips to East Side Mario's for dinner. The weather was always a bit on the cloudy-rainy yet still plenty warm side. 
Friday was a bit of a mess for the Coates girls. Kyla got a flat on our ride, which is bad news on the zipps. I was riding up a steep hill right in front of the hotel when all of a sudden my pedals locked and I flew into the ditch. I first thought that I had broken my chain, but it turned out that my back wheel had actually come off. It was 100% my fault because I guess I hadn't done the quick release up tight enough. Still, I was pretty shaky after that seeing as it is not everyday that your bike launches you into the ditch. After checking my bike I realized my hands were hurting, and mostly one finger in particular- so I yanked my rings off. I think I sprained my left ring finger, and I received a huge bruise on my leg. 
So then I got back to the hotel in an embarrassed, rattled huff- but decided one doesn't need their ring finger in triathlon anyhow! 
Next morning- race day- we got up pretty late. (Boys race was at 12:30, and ours at 1:15) It was already pretty hot- it was a high of 28 and Humid!
The boys started, but we didn't get to watch much of them because of warm up and eating and stuff. 
So this is my race report:
I think this was the hardest race I have ever done. It was one really big hammer-fest. Hammer the swim (cause then it'll be good on the bike)- hammer the bike (because you are getting dropped!) Hammer the run ( because that's the only hope left). My race went like so-
Good start- right on Marianne, Gaby, Kyla and Christine's feet! YES!
At around 400m I started to slip, and by the second buoy I got dropped. I remember telling myself to suck it up and stay on their feet- but then I realized that I was already going at an all out sprint, and that I just didn't have any more. I gave myself a mental note to remember in the next swim practice why training is worth it.
Anyways, I managed to get out of the water not too far back. I watched Kyla leave transition as I had my bike-so I knew all hope wasn't lost. My helmet and glasses had been knocked off, but I found them pretty fast. I hopped on my bike with two other girls. And then this is where the race went downhill. I was going as hard as I could, but I just couldn't get on their wheels. I sprinted for 2.5 km ( half a lap) before finally realizing that I had no hope of catching them. Luckily within 30 seconds the second pack had caught up to me. And they were riding FAST! Like super fast. Faster than I've ever ridden in a race for sure. 
We quickly caught up to the girls ahead, and then began to suck in the others in front of them. Kyla and I were riding together- trying to get to the front of the growing pack on the 180 degree turns. Finally the inevitable happened. We went around a corner and some of the girls didn't get up and go- causing everyone behind them to get stuck as the leaders sprinted ahead. Unfortunately me and seester were right behind those girls. We both got up and sprinted really hard once we got around them- and we led that little second pack for a long time- but we didn't catch them. 
I was bummed and exhausted. Other girls from a pack behind caught up to us and I realized that I could've swam probably up to a minute  slower and would have been in the same bike pack. A very discouraging thought. 
Finally the bike finished and I started on the run. I was pretty disheartened because I knew there was no way of getting a podium finish. I actually remember pondering just giving up and taking a rest in a bush. But that's not the person I am, and as I  slowly began picking off runner after runner, I became a little more confident. On the last lap I realized I was now among the front pack girls, and that made me happy. I ended up finishing fifth overall- and fourth for junior girls which surprised me quite a lot! I also got 100 bucks for 5th spot! Wohhoo :) 

So things I learned:
I need to become a better biker. 

Okay- race report done. A quick overview of next couple days goes like this: sweet bike in the pouring rain in this enclosed park, a nice shopping excursion in Ottawa, tour of Parliament buildings, and long day in airport.
Congrats to Christine who is a complete TANK on the bike (she did the whole thing at the front by herself before being caught at the very end), Gaby for a great race- first time running in a while, The junior boys who brought home some moola, Stevo for his race in Geneva- I think he learned stuff too-Scott for his race although I know nothing about how it went- Andrew and Kerry who did more amazing World cup racing in Europe, and Sarah Ann for her first Olympic distance and anyone else who raced. :) 

Okay I'm done. Night

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