Tuesday, 28 August 2007

Xterra Austria

This weekend saw the 3rd round of the European tour, Xterra Austria. It was a new venue from last year, so no one really knew what to expect. A small but very happening town greeted us warmly, Xterra posters were positioned everywhere and scantily clad girls in low cut xterra tops handed out flyers at every bar. Surrounded by mountains but with crystal clear lake (warm enough to swim with no wetsuit), it was a postcard perfect location for a race.
The swim went reasonably well for me coming out of the water 33rd losing a couple of minutes less than I did last year. The bike was very hilly, with plenty of technical sections wiht roots and rocks thrown in to cause problems. I managed the fastest bike split yet again (every race this year so far!) catching all but 2 of my rivals. Unforunately my water bottle bounced out of its cage on one of the bumpy descents on the first lap, leaving me without fuel for an hour and a half.
As i started the run, I knew I had pushed it hard on the bike and was dehydrated and tired, luckily so was one of the competitors ahead and to my suprise I finished the first 5km loop in second place, looking for my best ever European tour finish and a posible podium. Unfortunately lap 2 of the run saw me struggle home, losing 3 places to finish an eventual 5th.
Although not my best European result it was my most satisfying, against a very strong pro field.
This result moves me up to 7th in the series standings, with the German course likely to suit me and the home advantage at the final UK round, things are looking good for a top 5 overall. As well as these up coming races, I am also now looking to race the US champs at lake Tahoe in Nevada, on the way out to Hawaii for the world champs, it's going to be a very busy couple of months!

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