Steve Macklin reports on racing the World Triathlon Championships in London.

Tuesday, 17 September 2013  |  Admin

World Triathlon Championships London Race Report

So the final race of the season was the big one in London, the World Championships. It doesn't get much bigger than this with thousands of triathletes descending on Hyde Park for 4 days of triathlon action. I flew over on Wednesday with Stephen Walter from Cork and stayed at Imperial College next to Hyde Park. This was a perfect venue right next to the course and accessible to everything. Wednesday evening saw us register, do a few loops of bike course and then relax. Thursday was a busy day with the Irish team briefing at 8am followed by swim practice in the serpentine and watch the juniors race (Chris Mintern unfortunately crashed on the greasy roads but he'll be back stronger over next few years and Aaron & Emma had superb races). Great motivation for the following day!!! Then back to the college for a nap and some food before heading to transition to rack the bikes over night. That evening I did an easy jog, drills and strides and felt good. Some dinner locally that evening and watched some Sopranos and had an early night.

Race morning arrived and I felt confident after going through the whole process at the Europeans in June. Set up transition and did my warm up and then it was time to head for the pontoon. It was such a great feeling walking out on the pontoon with a full grandstand cheering everyone on. You gotta love that nervous/excited feeling before a big race, it was time to perform.


Cheering crowds in the grand stands at the World Triathlon Championships

Total time 1:09.59 and 27th place out of 120 in age group

Swim- 12.17 (Rank 55th)
I followed a new strategy trying to go out controlled and get on some feet and move through in 2nd half and it seemed to work well. No issues in swim at all, plenty of space etc and felt good. Perhaps I went a little too controlled as it felt relaxed enough exiting the water. 55th out of the 120 but probably should have done a bit more in it. Was my most relaxed 750m swim ever I think.

T1- 2.46 (Rank 8th)
Quick T2 as it had a big run up to it but felt good no issues here.

Bike- 35.57 (Rank 44th)
Technical 7.5km lap*3 with tight bends on wet/greasy roads wasn't my type of bike course and I think that split shows that!!! Disappointed with this bike split and I know it's a lot better than that. People were crashing on all the corners and with serious congestion on the course passing at times and trying to make any progress wasn't happening. We caught the women's 25-29 wave in front of us and some of the men and it was very busy on the loop and getting worse. Found I spent the whole bike rallying on the straights passing people, then slowing to an almost standstill at turns and bends due to traffic and greasy corners. Never got a chance to show my true bike legs at all!!!! Got through it safe and hoped to do some damage on run.

T2- 2.47 (Rank 20th)
This went fine solid transition and was feeling pretty good.

Run- 16.15 (Rank 5th)
Gave the run everything I had and just passed body after body. Run course was busy also so had to weave through runners at times. Ran hard and through the line with 5th fastest run split. The crowds were something else, thousands around the course cheering everyone on. It was great to have my family there also.

Overall I'm happy with the performance after a very very long season but know there's way more there on the bike split and a little in swim time also. 3 mins 54 secs off a medal and 2 mins 54 secs off a top 10 finish. It was an unbelievable experience all the same and after that and the Europeans, next year ill be a lot more experienced racing at these champs. The icing on the cake was watching Gomez and the Brownlees do battle, what a cracker of a race!!! Well done to all the Irish racing in London, everyone performed well. We also explored London meeting up with Kenny Curran, Mark Diamond and some of the rest of the Irish team!!! What happened in London stays in London:)

Overall it's been a mighty season with the following results:
- National Series Top 15 Ranking and top 5 in age group
- 3 National Series Podiums and never outside top 6 in all the races
- 2 Duathlon wins
- 12th place overall finish at National Championships
- 11th Place at European Championships in age group
- 27th Place at World Championships in age group


Congested bike course at the London World Triathlon Championships 2013

This was my first proper coached season in triathlon after 2 years dabbling in it and if you said to me last December that i would have those results, I wouldn't have believed it. It has been a great season and I enjoyed every moment of it. I must thank some people that have helped me along the way, as I couldn't improve without their support and expertise. Brian and Mark at SwimCycleRun.com, Stephen Teeling Lynch and the team at GoTri, Eric Wolfe/Chris Mintern/Ryan O Callaghan/Stephen Walter my training partners, Gary Aherne the best sports massage man in Cork, Jerry at the Edge Sports for looking after my bike issues all year, the young lads I coach at DCS/Togher for putting up with me missing some of their training/races at times and my family & friends at Togher AC. Finally the two men that I cannot credit enough Joe Lynch and Richard Laidlow. These two guys have helped me learn so much this year and instill a belief in myself that I never had before. The training was extremely tough at times but they both got it spot on and I followed every last detail of it. Patience, consistency and clever hard work was the emphasis in training and racing. Thanks guys, two legends!!!

So now it's time for some well earned rest and relaxation before thinking about next season and planning for it. I haven't even thought about it yet, going to enjoy some down time and then talk with Joe and Rich about things. Hopefully next year can be even better!!!

Steve

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