Last weekend the World Triathlon Series stopped off in Leeds for the latest round of fast and furious racing on the world stage.
The atmosphere in Leeds was brilliant, to have the opportunity to race on home soil with that level of support was incredible.
The British girls went into the race with a plan in mind to maximise our ability as a team and hopefully give the crowd something special to watch. Jess Learmonth, Non Stanford and I all lined up knowing we were targeting the same thing and what we needed to do to fulfil that goal in a variety of different scenarios.
Personally I needed to get out of the swim in the front pack if I wanted to have a productive day out. My race in the Madrid World Cup a couple of before suggested I was fully capable of this, however on Sunday I got caught up in some rough moments in the first 100m which ultimately resulted in hyperventilating before the first turn buoy and spending the rest of the swim trying to regain composure and find a way back into the race.
Coming out the water in the second pack, I looked around and realised I was with key athletes we had identified not to work for. This meant my job for the day was now to ‘sit in’ and make them do the work to get back to the front of the race. A frustrating position to be in when the bike is my strongest discipline, but it was necessary for what we were aiming to achieve. That being said the bike course was great to ride- a longish drag of a hill followed by a technical section through narrow streets with high buildings.
On to the run and it was a case of getting to the finish. My chest had tightened up as a result of the hyperventilating on the swim and it became a problem half way through the run. I ended the race in 17th position, my second best World Series result.
Leeds wasn’t my best day out by a long stretch, but there are always positives to take away. I gained confidence the technical bike sessions I’ve been doing are paying off – I felt comfortable through the technical sections of the course.
Next up is the European Championships on Friday where I’m defending champion. The Championships are being held in Kitzbuhel, Austria which is said to be a beautiful place to spend some time and race a triathlon.