I arrived in Port Stephens on Friday night and drove in via the cycle course to get a look at where the race would be held. Although it was dark it was easy to see that the location would be ideal and that the bike route would be fairly flat with a few undulations on each lap. The race wasn't starting until 10.30 the next day so I did a light ride with some surges and a jog in the morning to get myself moving. Swim
The swim course was a beach start and had changed to an 'M' shape course which had us coming out of the water on to the beach after one lap. There was a strong current and a few rips which I think is why the course changed. The only issue with this is that the water was pretty shallow for about 100m before you could get swimming so it involved either a lot of diving or some high knee running for each lap on the way out and in. Once swimming it was a great relief as the current was great on the way out but tougher when we turned the buoy to approach the beach again. I exited the water with the 8th best swim in my age group.
I transitioned well, although when putting my foot into my shoes on the bike I managed to completely pull my insole of the shoe out and had to stuff it down my tri-suit. The 3 lap bike course was not technical expect for a fast downhill section on the way back. It had undulations and a bit of a steep last hill before the turn around at half way. I managed to work into the bike and got faster each lap. There was great Balmoral support as some of our club members travelled to watch and really gave me a boost each lap, I even managed a few waves to them as I went by. I ended up with the second fastest bike in my age group.
The run was a 3 lap flat course on road/ grass and had the befit of seeing competitors to motivate me in catching up those who might be in my age group. I started out fast feeling pretty good, but started to cramp in my hamstrings a bit on the second lap and eased for a while. i managed to get going again on the last lap for the fastest run split of the day in all ages.
I ended up winning my age group and finished 7th overall. Only one other age group athlete beat me and all the others were Open athletes. It is very promising and motivation with only one race to go this season at the UK OD Championships.
Big thanks to The Wong's, Foginator and Macca for the cheering out on the course, it helped massively. Also a shout out to Energylink who have got me performing well at the right time of the season.