3rd place in California on a meidocre dayMarch 29, 2010
I was 3rd in my first career attempt at the 70.3 distance after a somewhat off day, especially on the bike. The winner was Ironman 70.3 World Champion Michael Raelert and last year's winner Matt Reed came in second. With acceptable swim and run performances, but cycling way under my usual standard, I am quite satisfied with another podium - although I'm eager to win something soon!
Before the competition I was told that it would be cold during this race. The water was only 15 degress celcius (about 60 Fahrenheit) but I still had a decent swim. I had my first swim ever in the new Blue Seventy Axis (http://www.blueseventy.com/products/detail/axis). Even though I didn't have the chance to test it before the race, it felt really good and I exited the water only 10 seconds behind the swim leader.
Off day on the bike
I had a bad first transition where I fumbled a lot with my helmet because my fingers were so cold and numb. That left me chasing the leaders on the bike where I was stranded on my own for a long time. After a while on my own, super biker Andrew Yoder came past me and I was able to follow him going up to the front. We just caught up with the leaders when he blew past them on a short steep hill and tore the field apart and I was left on my own again. After an hour on the bike I felt the heat coming back to my body, but I still had no power in the legs and I couldn’t get my heart rate up. I was shivering the first 40 or 50 km on the bike because it was only 10-12 degrees Celcius and the first time I got the warmth back in my feet was 2-3 km out on the run.
My run was ok, but not super impressive. I ran a 1:14:10 half marathon (3:30/km), and actually out ran both Raelert and Reed. But I'm sure that I can run 1:11 or less on a course like this. I was able to pace it good all the way and held a stable pace.
Abu Dhabi in the legs
I am really satisfied with the result but not with my performance. I had hoped to be able to battle it out for the win but when I had i mediocre day like that I am glad to get on the podium in a strong field.
I had expected that the Abu Dhabi race two weeks earlier might still sit in my legs and with an 8 hour time difference on top of that I was in for a hard day in the office. After 200 km on the bike in a competition the muscles were tired and it definitely affected my biking in California. On the run I decided to use my short distance shoes and that worked out fine. I had a good run where I was able to hold the technique during the race.
Raelert has been training in Florida the past four weeks and was well prepared. When he was world champion in Clearwater this November he destroyed everebody on the run but this time he put the hammer down on the bike, and it looks like he has found his favourite distance. Reed is one of the best in the world in both the non draft Olympic distance and on the 70.3, so it ended up being a strong podium.
Structure in the training next two weeks
I had a great time in California and Oceanside is a really nice place. The area is filled with small hills and a good variety in the terrain. The atmosphere is very nice and the weather is also good even though it is cold in the morning.
I headed straight for Playitas to train with the national team the next two weeks. I will take it easy the first days after the race and then I am looking very much forward to have a good block of steady training for the next weeks.
Michael Raelert, Germany: 3:58:27
Matt Reed, USA: 4:01:17
Rasmus Henning, Denmark: 4:02:07