So here we are, the week of my biggest race of the year and prob most competitive to date. I’ve decided not to do Vegas 70.3 World’s due to cost and other details – also prob a year too early as I want to be competitive and haven’t yet reached the level required to justify this in my opinion just yet.
Fortunately, I had entered Wiesbaden a while ago and I’m now even more excited and thankful.
Lots of variables, but lots of benchmarks and great competition to measure my progress against.
There’s a good few Irish heading over – fellow B2R athlete Jennifer Duffy, Karl Kildea (5th at Vegas world’s last year, now in my AG) then the UK contingent of Matt Molloy, Martin Muldoon, Rory Maguire, Declan Doyle and many others. Charles Pennington of Team Freespeed came 2nd in Vegas last year in my AG by mere seconds – he’s moved up an AG this year but another great chance to compare to the level I’m targeting.
Also in my Age Group I’m lucky enough to have the guy who hammered me in Miami 70.3 last year – Alessandro Boschian. Beat me by 12mins to win our age group so the perfect bench mark – hoping the hillier course helps me gain some of that back as well as performance progress I hope!
The goal is to podium at AG and get a trophy, the ultimate goal is to Win a IM70.3 AG trophy so whether that comes this weekend or next season we shall see but it’s high on my current short term goals list. My run needs to be low 1:20’s if not under for that to be achieved so that’s an area I’m focussed on and training has gone very well recently and I feel in low 1:20’s shape assuming good pacing on hilly bike course which is key to this race.
All 360 in our AG are off at same time which will make for a manic start in a relatively narrow lake, but the best way for it.
Pro’s you ask? Yes. Plenty! How does Sebastien Kienle, Michael Raelert, Faris Al Sultan, Richie Nicolls, Bart Aernouts, the 2 Vasiliev Brothers, Jan Frodeno, Ivan Rana, Fraser Cartmell, Thomas Hellreigl and more sound? Stacked? Indeed!
The female pro’s have the controversial Lisa Hutthaler who has won Austria 70.3, Mallorca 70.3 and another recent one but has a darkened past being done for drugs in bike racing and trying to bribe officials to keep it quiet etc. Time served but a few other reported incidents (causing competitor to knock off bike, drafting issues etc) lead to a somewhat awkward favourite. Will be interesting to see the reception at awards ceremony if she wins/podium’s so I’ll be there to report...
Water temp is currently 24 degree’s, cut off is 24.5 and temps this week are a little cooler at mid 20’s so hopefully the wetsuit stays legal. I do have a speedsuit in case and will be bringing it as it may be required.
The winner of my AG will need to be around the 4:25 mark or below, something like a 27-28min swim, mid 2:30’s bike and sub 1:20 run so I know what’s required. A very hilly bike with 1500m elevation, lots of climbs and slightly long at 91km seems the key. A nice 4 lap run all be it 2.5km up a gradient and 2.5km down will be tough and really see what’s in the legs.
Here’s hoping for a great race and chance to put all the recent hard work in training to good use.
Fly out Thurs am – meet up with Matt Molloy/Team Freespeed for a bike recce that afternoon and race is early Sunday am and an hour ahead of Irish time.
You will all be on your long bike’s whilst I’m slogging it out on the run ready to fall over I suspect! Or else on route to a race here no doubt.