Well 2015 season came to a hault a little prematurely for me unfortunately. I had been thoroughly looking forward to hitting the last 3 races of the season hard, World Duathlon Champs in Australia, Tongyeong World Cup, and then Noosa Triathlon.
I had done a lot of work over the European summer and was getting excited to finally showcase the work and get out there and see what I had to race!...Unfortunately as mentioned in my last blog, I tore my hammy just before I left to come home. I had probably somewhat naively thought it must be minor, I could be back up and race ready two weeks later if I backed off for another week, and try for the last race of the season at least, Noosa.
After resting it I very quickly learnt I was holding on to false hope, and it was not going to be close to ready. With bigger goals in my sights for next year, it then became an easy decision. Not racing as the only decision, heal up so I am ready to go for next year. I think sometimes when you know you have put in a lot of work, and been anticipating putting that work into good use, I was hoping too much that I could still salvage it, and make all those hours seem more worthwhile, but at the same time that want and eagerness to perform, hides the reality that stares you in the face. Glass half full vs glass half empty, in which case I was trying to see what I wanted to see.
So after a week hanging out swim training in Noosa paradise, and watching my good buddy Joe Maloy take his first Noosa win!
Its now time to kick back, and enjoy that ability to do nothing and relax for a while! Holidays!
But on reflection there were plenty of highs and lows from this season for me, and here is a look at the season of 2015 in summary!
7th at Mooloolaba World Cup to kick start the season! - great start as I was not far back off the podium here! and was so happy to return back to race this race. Cant beat a home race!
Then off to NZ where as good as I had felt hammering the bike in Mooloolaba last week, I felt as bad on the bike the following week. Very disappointing race for me in New Plymouth World Cup.
Then a blinder of a race saw me win my second Bussleton 70.3 Half Ironman! First race on my TT Felt IA bike too, and it made a huge difference on the bike to me riding a TT bike vs a road bike! Noted for next race :) This was a highlight of my year racing with my family friends and little niece and nephews seeing what its all about.
The following week I tried to back up another ITU World Cup, 6 days later in China, and got oh so close to my elusive WC podium, running into 3rd...to just die on the last lap and fall back to 6th. I was actually amazed with the result! Because if anyone out there had felt how my legs felt the whole day I was expecting to come in about 40th! I would say that is single handedly the worst and most absolute cactus I have ever felt pre and during a race, by a long shot! That's was definitely my half Ironman legs, and looong travel's fault.
Then a low low point...
24 hours after touching down in France I had my bike stolen. :(
This caused havoc on my training for 3 weeks and mentally. After being so driven and focused to prepare for my next world cup and keep chasing a podium, the universe played a cruel joke and stole my bike. So my preparation for Huatulco World Cup was a combination of trying to minimise collateral damage on a somewhat ordinary mountain bike! two different road bikes, up to 3 hour rides in my sneakers, a car trip across the country, tears, missed sleep, missed sessions, countless hours on the internet, trying to find a replacement bike, and a big thanks to the girls who lent me something in the mean time!
Then just as crazy, when I was going to pull the pin on the race, it had cost me way to much at this stage....3 weeks later a friend drove past a guy riding my bike in the city beside where I live! the odds of this happening?..1 in a million! and I got my little Felt bike back:)
I took that as my sign as said F#@k it! I will give it a shot anyway, and I will just do the best with what I've got, so I went to Huatulco World Cup.
Huatulco Mexico World Cup - Great swim and I made front pack on the bike!..and the extremely challenging bike course proved too much for my disrupted bike training, and I felt so foreign on my own bike after fluffing about, and having to change bikes so many times in the lead up. I finished 13th in Huatulco. Once again disappointing, and not what I had set out to achieve, but I did my best under challenging circumstances there.
After all this it was time to wipe the slate clean again. A change of scenery and a breath of "fresh air" up at Boulder Colarado for a training block sans O2, aka altitude. Was on the agenda. What an amazing place it was! I loved it up there! and it gave me a chance to "practice my English" again! haha
I did my biggest running week ever up there and used that to bounce into my next races back down at sea level.
New York City Big Lifetime Triathlon was my welcome back to oxygen!..maybe not quite in the middle of the race! but before and after at least. I finished 3rd in the Big Apple with a finishing chute down the beautiful Central Park, and kick started my racing again here.
Then the highlight of my year by a long shot!...
A win at Tizzy ITU World Cup!!!
This meant the absolute world to me, and this, ...is what I had been chasing.
Circumstance had made the last two attempts at this even more challenging, but I was estactic, we had finally succeeded!!
Back in france it was time to switch bikes again, but this time by choice! it was out on the big rig! TT Time! It was so much fun riding my tt bike for a while. I was off to try a new race, the 'Beijing International Triathlon' China time!
IMG put on a superb course through the Garden expo, up to temples, through the city, and who can forget the 600 stairs we ran up! I finished on the podium here again in 3rd!
One last podium in France for myself and my team Saint Raphael gave the team its best ever result finishing second overall to finish the French Grand Prix season! Its was so much fun to share a podium with the team, and this would be my last podium for 2015.
About now is where the hamstring decided to time out, and call it a day.
Once again a season with high highs, and low lows.
But as always you learn again. Some mistakes were made, some mistakes were fixed, some things were just done better than before, others need more work, all in all, aiming to smoothe it all out!
...and of course a massive thanks to everyone that played a part in the 2015 season. Friends, family, coaches, training partners. medical staff, and sponsors,
Scody, Felt, Brooks, Oakley, Zealous, Shotz, Outotec, Cyclemania, ..its never unnoticed or under appreciated!