1st 4:20:07 (course record)
Swim 29:19 23rd
Bike 2:25:08 1st
Run 1:21:37 1st
I woke up on race morning to see rain outside. Quite a lot of it. Far from the hot, dry conditions seen in the past 2 years. "That's ok" I thought, "the bike course is not technical, I'll just be sure to take it easy on all the corners ...no risks...I should be fine". Sitting here writing this report now a couple days post-race, I have a swollen, pussing right hip, grazed elbow and some odd pain in my chest. And then there's poor old Shivvy who's banged up along his right side and his new disc wheel is scuffed and cracked from a media bike that happened to be by my side/on my bike at just the wrong moment. So this is how it happened...
As I scull on the start line, I psyche myself up for a fast, explosive start. With many of the ITU triathletes switching to Long Course this year I expect the swim to be even faster than usual. The cannon goes off and I go as fast I can. This year, I decided to position myself far left to stay out of the chaos and get a clean start. I'm in clear water for a 100m or so before somehow I'm in the washing machine. It soon thins out and I find myself in clear waters again. Which means the faster packs have already left me behind. Somehow I manage to find myself in clear water for the majority of my races. Maybe I subconsciously really prefer swimming on my own. It's not the fastest way to get through the swim leg and definitely not the most economical either.
There's congestion on the mount line as Shivvy and I approach so I keep running past the girls and mount my bike a bit further down the road. I've got somewhere to be people! The first few k's are uphill, through some roundabouts, and then through some narrow turns under a pedestrian tunnel to the other side of the road so I play it real safe here. This is one of the very few technical parts of the course so I don't wanna stack it. Half way up this first climb out of transition I see Jared and he tells me I'm 3:10 down on the leaders and in 13th position. That's ok for now.
Three nice hilly laps would follow. Down 1mile, u-turn, up 1mile, weave past transition, up another 1mile, u-turn, down 1mile, sharp 180deg turns down a ramp, passed transition then repeat two more times. At least it's spectator friendly. I feel pretty good. I don't seem to be sore from my crash, or at least I'm not allowing my mind to believe that. I'm focused, on a mission to get to the finish line in first place. I don't take in much of the surrounds , I don't want to divert my attention from the job. Each lap I'm extending my lead but I still can't relax until the finish line is in sight. I've crashed before like this and had to DNF after my leg starting tingling, seized up and went numb. I get to the top of the last hill, u-turn and start heading down. Downhill all the way to the finish. Finally, I'm pretty confident at this point I have it in the bag. I begin to acknowledge the cheering spectators, the enthusiastic age group athletes and my lead bicycle who congratulates me before pulling off just before I take the last turn into the finishing straight. The smile on my face goes from ear to ear. The feeling is amazing. World champion! And the first time any female has won two world 70.3 Championships. I'm stoked! I'm so happy! Words cannot describe... I DID IT!