This week I was back racing and really looking forward to getting back into it. This was a race with no expectations and it was a race where I wanted to experiment. All that said a quality field showed up and straight away im thinking im in trouble here, considering the week I had training wise. I didnt let up all week. I worked alot in zone 3 and my legs were tired before the race. But you cant start making excuses before races..(maybe after!!!)
We were started by a cannon..It startled the bejasus out me and the rest of the field. I felt good and got into a nice pace and set myself up nicely for the bike. I exited the water with Kevin Keane just ahead and felt I done a good job..
Mounting the bike my shoe caught something and fell off and i was held up for a bit letting Kevin get away. It took me a good few minutes to catch him and then I set about getting up the field as high as possible. The course is flat but the surface isnt great and I felt myself bumping over the road in parts. I probably put too much pressure in the tires..I hoped to catch up with the leaders around 20/25k but there was no sign of them giving me the impression that maybe i didnt swim that well after all.. Then your mind plays tricks with you and you ask yourself did I pass them out already and didnt notice them.. ?? no such luck, and at about 30km I caught Colin Bolger and Bjorn Ludick.. Conor Murphy was not in sight and I only caught him in the last 2 km. I know how Conor can run and knew I was racing for 2nd. If I want to beat conor I need to put serious time into him on the bike. That wasnt going to happen today. I didnt know how the legs were going to do today but I felt good, a little fatigued but all things considered i was happy the way the race was going.
Onto the run and this is where i wanted to experiment. I needed(wanted) to do a negetive split. I told myself to stick to the plan and if the lads catch me and pass me, just to do my thing. I went out slow and finished hard! The guys werent close enough and I finished second with my negetive split on the run and a good solid effort on the bike. It is a great venue and a well organised race.
Where good days turn bad…
Friends of mine were getting married and I needed to get back to Dundalk, I told the race Director I needed to go and thanked him for a great race. Before I left I used my free food voucher 😉 and had a burger.. back to the van and I was missing something..my iphone.. went back to where i put it down and no sign.. The MC announced over the crowd but no-one handed it in.. I had to go and hoped maybe someone would later hand it in. I got to the wedding and also got a new sim and replacement phone. My first message on the phone was from colin bolger..” why did you get DQ’ed pal”????… I thought he was winding me up so I rang him..no wind up!
I got Talking to the race organiser a while after and I was disqualified for crossing the white line entering in or out of a corner, im not sure!! In fairness I did hear something about a corner in the race briefing but I wasnt fully tuned into the briefing. The race referee was behind me in a car and witnessed it apparently! this is my argument!!!…When I entered the corner I did crossed the line but I was the only person on the road.. The corner was littered with marshalls and I didnt put myself or any other person in danger! I think I am an experienced enough rider to know what is and isnt safe. I think commonsense should of been showed and the referee should of have had the cop on to know what the best decision was. These referees race themselves im sure,( probably further down the field) & I hope it wasnt the case of ”I’ll should that fella”… If there were a few bikes on the road and maybe a car approaching, yes i totally agree with the descision but there wasnt and The rule book was slamed in my face!!
On a positive, I raced well considering my week and Antwerp still in the legs. And the wedding was great craic.. Next stop Dublin in 2 weeks! Here’s hoping to getting on the finishers list….;-)