17 August 2009

WOC Long Qualification

I started my 2009 World Champs campaign today with the long distance qualification. After a frustrating spring - missing most of the Nordics and the World Games through illness - I was excited and nervous. I had a great winter training, but two illnesses this spring and early summer set me back, and I was unsure how my shape would be in the championships. I had a great start draw - second last, starting with Tero Föhr and Martin Johansson, and it was a good boost to be able to run parts of the course with them. The courses were quite close, so I saw a lot of them. Coming to the spectator control, Martin was just in front, and they announced he was leading his heat, so I was confident I was running well, and although the speaker didn't say anything about me, Dave Rollins told me I was right on the pace. After that I was a little more relaxed, running really well, apart from 2 controls. The 15th I didn't understand the green area at all, and I thought I was to the left of the control - I turned right and was searching for 30 seconds before I realised I had turned the wrong way. I ran back to see Simonas Krepsta (started 2 minutes before me) coming in. I had passed him at number 7, but my mistake allowed him to catch me again. I lost around 1.20 at the 15th, and after that we ran together. We were both hesitant at 17 - I didn't understand the shape of the ground, and lost 20 seconds. Then I was chasing him to the finish. When I took the last control, Dave shouted to take it easy, that I was safe, so I jogged into the finish, happy that I would be maybe number 5-10 in the results, but as I came to the line, the speaker said I had a new leading time! It turns out I was also leading at the spectator control. A real surprise and a good confidence boost for the week.

It felt like I had an almost perfect first loop, maybe losing 20 seconds on direction out of number 4. I was running fast and clean. After the spectator control I was more relaxed, and maybe a little too relaxed for 15 and 17. Total time loss around 2 minutes, but really happy with the physical shape and obviously the result! Probably my best international result to date, and certainly if you discount my sprint results.

I am realistic enough to know that a good race today does not equal a good race in the final, and that a top 10 result is still going to be really tough, but I am also happy and confident after today's race.

Respectable day for the team, Scott ran well and Sarah and Helen B made it too.

Results here

Cheesy photos below courtesy of Steve Hale

Post race interview

New leading time!
Proud team mates


N said...

Hi GG. Only 1 suggestion. Crook that right elbow a bit more and drop it a bit. Then it will be perfect!

Anonymous said...

Yeah - and get bigger muscles - Usain looks the business when he does it - you look like a soft cxxx.

Good effort - really impressive result. Now repeat it and add another 30 minutes.

Go hard.....


Steven Hale said...

World class! Nice pics too.

Nixon said...

You look like Draco Malfoy...

Keep up the good work mate