Two months, too fast!

Hello !

Without realizing it too much, its already been two months since my last follow-up! Therefore, here’s a quick list of the important moments:

-2nd place in Clermont ITU American Cup, start of March

-1st place in Sarastota ITU Pan-American sprint distance championships, a week after

-A start at New Plymouth World Cup, which was half expected, ending up in a good 22nd place

-A surprise start in Gold Coast WTS two days before the race!

-44th place in Gold Coast WTS with a strong swim, hard bike and a run where nothing was left in the tank

-A good 26th place in Huatulco  World Cup, on a very hot and challenging course!

 

After a solid altitude training camp in Ecuador, we were hoping for some solid results at my two first races of the year in Florida. We had some moderately high expectations, but we exceeded them, having two really good results, proving a great fitness for this time of the year. This also gave me enough points in order to enter the New Plymouth World Cup!

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I therefore made my way towards New Zealand on my own, as the rest of my group returned to Montreal, and had the chance to stay in a very nice and super accommodating homestay in New Plymouth. After an ok swim and a solid bike, I had a very bad second transition to exit almost last (of my group) on the run course, but I had a solid run to finish in 22nd position. The T2 had cost me the top 20, but it still was a quite satisfying race.

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The next day, I was leaving for Brisbane, where I’d either stay to see if I’d make WTS Gold Coast start list, or stay there for a tad more than a week to prepare for Chengdu World Cup. As you probably know, the first option happened, and I was definitely thrilled to take part in my first ever WTS race!!

 

After a good swim in a fast field, I found myself in the second group, only a bunch of seconds behind the pack of leaders. A couple of laps of hard biking after, we’d caught the first group, and continued to ride very hard until all was left was a lap or two, where to my delight we finally slowed down a little. Coming out of second transition was definitely the hardest part of the race, as my legs were completely fried and had no plans of cooperating for the 10km run. However, even as I found myself rather quickly at the back of the race, one thing was clear in my mind: As this was my first WTS, I’d give everything I had to finish the race. I crossed the line in a not-so-glorious 44th place, followed by a quick visit to the medical tent due to a light heat exhaustion. It wasn’t exactly the result I expected, but it still was a fabulous experience to see the requirements for racing at the highest level, and extremely motivating to get back to training to work on specific small stuff.

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I returned two days later to Montreal, and had a couple of well earned days off.

Two weeks ago, I took part in Richmond American Cup, where I took an ok 5th place. Not a great result, but not so worrying, as it was more of a preparation race for this last weekends World Cup in Huatulco.

When I arrived in Huatulco, I realized that the reputation is true, it is a very humid 35 degrees! Coming in from Montreal, who had been quite chilly in the past week or so (usually around 5-10 degrees), needless to say AC was on full blast!

We had an early 8:30 am start, which meant it would be a bit less hot for the race start, but we came in prepared and I had the chance of using ice vests and some slushies in order to get my core temperature down. The organisation also had some bike aid stations planned from lap 2 to 8, which was awesome! I had a great  swim start which places me in the top swimmers from the gun, and exited  in the top 10 into first transition. Before we knew, it was a big bunch on the bike and we were at the bottom of the infamous hill, which was negotiated quite quickly. I thought that after a couple of laps, the pace would slow down a bit: I have to say I was completely wrong! Each lap was full gas in that hill section, which made for some very tired legs on the first two laps of the run. On the third lap, my legs started to feel better, and finished with a very strong last lap to cross the line in a good 26th place.

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Now back home since Wednesday morning, I’ll already be leaving this Tuesday for 2 months at our European base in Vitoria-Gasteiz, with some FGP, German Bundesliga action and also some more exciting WTS and World Cup starts! I’m already excited for next race 🙂

Until next time,

Xavier

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