Sunday, August 1, 2010

London...

Here’s my extremely late race report, it’s been written for a while but I haven’t got around to posting it. I think I’ve received more emails in the past 7 days than I have in my whole life. The support has been overwhelming and I really appreciate every single message that I’ve received. I’m not used to getting so much attention from newspapers and TV stations so it has been quite the experience!!

This was absolutely the best result of my life, but was not quite the best race of my life. I’m usually able to get out ahead in the swim and avoid most of the chaos, but I got trampled going around the turn buoys on the first lap. The second lap was a bit better, but I could see a small gap to the front pack when I dove back in the water. Kathy was right in front of me and managed to close the gap so we were at the tail end of the leaders by the end. I hopped on my bike and hammered by myself to catch the girls who were about 100 meters ahead. I wasn’t making up any time until Nicola Sprig came blazing by me, so I stood up and made sure I got on her wheel. Kathy told me at our camp that if you don’t make lead pack, the first question you ask is “Where is Nicola??” because she’s SO strong and usually pulls herself and any lucky survivors up to the front. We joined the front pack after the first lap. The pace was pretty quick and our group got strung out on all the corners, which made for lots of standing and chasing. I took some pulls at the front but the girls were so strong that I felt like I was getting in the way. I hate sitting at the back so I tried to help as much as I could. Transition 2… another nightmare, I got off my bike in great position at the front, which almost never happens for me. I couldn’t get my shoes on very quickly, and I took a few steps with my helmet on before realizing that it needs to go into my box, so I ran back to drop it off and was out of transition dead last. Ha.. just like in Des Moines, I knew I had to bridge the gap to the leaders right away. The best part of the day was that my run was feeling great, better than I’ve ever felt, and I settled in very comfortably with the leaders. A few girls fell off the back until there were 4 of us left at the front. 4 girls and 3 spots on the podium.. I knew it was going to be a tough battle and I was not confident that I could beat any of them. I hesitantly went to the front at the start of the last lap with everyone right behind me, and was still feeling really good. I swung around the last 180° turn, looked back and saw that I had made a small gap. I still had a while to go at this point and definitely didn’t feel like I had the race won. I took a few glances to make sure that I wasn’t going to get out-sprinted at the end. I crossed the line in total complete shock, and happier than ever.

I couldn’t have had this result without the help of so many people. Triathlon Canada did a great job of making sure that we were ready to go in London. Thanks to Patrick, Kurt, Kim, Sophie, Ben, and Dr. Keeler! Also, thanks to Patrick, DJ, Sophie, Yulla, Ben and Dr Smith for all of the great work you did at our training camp in France. It was an awesome 3 weeks and I appreciate all of the work that went in to making it a success.

Up next for me is Kitzbuhel on August 15th, then Kelowna and Budapest.

Thanks again to everyone for the support. It’s been an overwhelming week but I’ve loved every minute of it.

Paula



2 comments:

Gregwh said...

Congrats on your double win Paula! You are reminding the World that Canadian athletes are bad ass.

Herveste said...

Beautiful. Thanks for these moments and thanks for introducing me to triathlon.

Hervé from Chicoutimi (Québec)