Oct 14 2011
Firstly let me thank everyone who helps me do this wonderful sport. It’s a team effort out there – athletes are but the tip of the iceberg. Friends, family, sponsors, coaches, fellow competitors and supporters:- it’s you guys and girls who make it possible for me to go out there and chase my goals and to fulfil my potential. Thank you each and every person who cheered from near and far; to those who gave their time and energy to fix and prep my body and mind and who took the time and effort to help motivate and inspire me in so many different ways. Special thanks to husband Richard and coach Phil who put up with a lot of angry, frustrated and upset Cat. And special thanks to my amazing homestay families without whom I would not have hoped to have the season that I have had: Lulu and Frank in Galveston; team Newman on St Croix; Fred in Austin, and the Trinkle family in Houston and John and Linda in Kona.
What can I say about Kona this year? My first reflection is that it was a privilege to see some fabulous performances out there by my fellow competitors. In particular by fellow Brits: Leanda whose race came together so perfectly; Rachel who should really be called “Little Miss Consistency”; and Chrissie who triumphed despite “sub-optimal” preparation as she would say!
My personal race didn’t go 100% according to plan. I’d give it a score of 6.5-7 out of 10. At least this year I made it to the start line minus colds or flus. A sub-par swim is never the best way to start, however, it’s a long day out there and if I were to judge all my races on the quality of the swim I’d have quit this sport a long while ago. My bike ride was solid, the best ride that I’ve had in Kona, so I’m happy with that. My run was off par and to be honest this is what broke the race for me. Between around mile 7 and 12/13 I had a bad phase. I was going to call it a bad patch, but it was more prolonged that that!! The wheels fell off and I was into one foot in front of the other mode. I had to visit the portaloos on four occasions. Such a joy, especially when they’ve been sitting in 35 degree heat all afternoon. Then somebody flicked a switch. The lights came back on and I was off – out the gates and running again. The best thing was that I was also enjoying the race. I ran as hard as I could and I didn’t give up on the hope that I could catch some of the girls in front. I knew that top 5 was out of the window but I ran for top 10. It’s a disappointing result on paper but I can take away so many learning points and positives from this race. I can work on the swim. I can try to explore why I had some stomach issues and why I had the bad patch on the run. I worked through a lot of negativity and came away smiling. The heat didn’t bother me.
I raced as hard as I could and gave my best personal effort on the day. I’m proud of that but I’m not finished with Kona, that’s for sure.