352 Stuart Caunt, GBR

352 Stuart Caunt, GBR
Position in AG 35-39: 12 // Overall time: 1:11:35
Swim: 0:14:30 // Bike: 0:35:36 // Run: 0:21:28

Coach’s remarks: Thx Stuey and you can report in next about your swim session this morning with Ambrose, Macca, Crowie, Princey along with the other ITU kids only a few lanes from you!!

Quick report from Kurnell yesterday.

The start of a great holiday for myself and the Queen.  Flew out of Dubai in the early hours of Friday morning and got into Sydney late Friday night.  The upgrade from Emirates was a fantastic bonus.  Glad I listened to the others who have been to Oz and made sure my bike was clean as they do check this kind of thing at quarantine.  Well worth being completely honest when you do the form as you go in – I even got my hiking boots cleaned for me, that’s really great service…

We got to our wonderful home stay family late at night and having followed advice and not slept too much on the flight I managed to get to sleep after a couple of hours.  Bit of a late morning but then survived a 15 minute ride round Cronulla past the houses of a number of Aussie sports stars then a swim in the notoriously shark infested bay (at least that’s what coach had been telling me from the moment I signed up for the trip)

The clouds started to come in late in the afternoon and the forecast for Sunday was for some true Yorkshire weather.  I had been expecting 40 degrees and sunburn but here we were worrying about wet roads and cold.

Usual early morning start and up to go down to registration.  The event was fantastically organized but we really do get so spoilt racing in the Aerofits.  Main point of the race briefing was to stress that we would be racing on open roads and that we needed extreme care on the bike.  The swim gave me a bit of culture as it was in Botany Bay exiting the water past the Captain Cook monument.

There were loads of waves starting with some up and coming pros.  I had an 18 minute start on coach so I was really just hoping to get through the race without being caught.  Racing in Australia I had assumed that everyone would be a brilliant swimmer and I would have a lonely trip round the course.  Luckily not everyone swims like coach so after the dash into the (fortunately) calm water from the beach the swim was pretty civilized and I was swimming near the front of a small pack (although not the front pack). Transition was about 300m away up the hill so plenty of time to get the top of the wetsuit off

Onto the bike and it was straight uphill and into the wind for 2k which made getting feet into shoes a bit tricky.  The reward though was a 10k blast down the hill and onto the flat road out to the turnaround point.  Some speed bumps on the way downhill to keep us on our toes and then a sharp left and right turn as we went out which had already claimed one victim who was lying in the middle of the road as I picked my way round this slippery part of the course.  The race had 650 entries so there was a constant stream of people to be passed.  The rain was falling pretty hard by this point so not too many worries about drafting as any time you passed someone you were treated to a face full of road grit and spray.  The trip back up to T2 was uneventful but seemed longer as it was slightly uphill for most of it and then quite steeply uphill intoT2

I had ridden pretty hard and probably still had some jetlag in me so when I hit the run I really felt flat.  The run was mainly on grass and was hilly and soaking wet but with 3 laps. You got to see the crowd pretty regularly and there was some good support out there from Vic, Mareesa and Tyler who was well wrapped up against the elements and looking forward to seeing his dad’s return to the big time.  I eventually dragged myself over the line, grabbed a drink and then waited for coach.  The finish was strongly uphill so I expected him to be flying and in agony when he appeared.  Eventually he appeared but did not seem to be cranking the way I thought he would (I’ll let him explain why in his own report).  This was just as well as once he was over the line he instantly had to do a post race interview.

Naturally, as soon as we got home the rain stopped…  The afternoon was spent in some good tri company including a visit to the legendary Burraneer bakery.  A couple of days of sightseeing to come and then it’s time for the serious business of Lake Wanaka.  See you all soon

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