On the 30th-31st of March I participated in the first of the British Triathlon Super Series. This is called the performance assessment and it is taken place over two days. The first day included a pool swim for the athletes to determine their starting place for the bike and run the following day. Whatever time an athlete achieved in the swim would be the time they started for the bike and run, meaning if the leader had a swim 10 second faster than the second person, the leader would start 10 seconds ahead the next day.

Saturday 30th March

My plan going into the swim was always to come out on top. As swimming is my strongest and favourite element in triathlon I have continued to have the fastest swim in the performance assessment for the last 2 years and I wanted to follow in that success this year. However, this year I moved up to junior distance (800m, 32 lengths) which was double the distance of last years swim (400m, 16 lengths).

Deep joy…

If the thought of swimming that far was bad, I also had to bike (20k) and run (5k) which was also double the distance of last years races.

Knowing the swim is my strongest part of the triathlon it’s my priority to get the biggest gap possible to secure being in the front bike pack for the second part of the race on the Sunday. Luckily I was in a lane next to a strong swimmer like myself and we both ended up touching in 9:21. This was the fastest swim time giving us an advantage for the bike and run the next day.

That night I had a fat burger and a Brownie Sundae for pudding (because we all know nutrition is key) with the company of Tomos Land who joined the Sharp family for dinner. #legend

Sunday 31st March (Happy Mother’s Day Mum!)

At an all you can eat buffet I’m usually the type of person that would fill themselves up so much they think they’re going to explode but will still eat more because the food is technically free. Unfortunately that wasn’t the case when it came to unlimited breakfast that morning. When I’m nervous eating is probably the last thing I want to do (shock). My appetite was low but I guess I was expecting it as this was a usual occurrence before racing for me. I ate what I needed and headed to race destination.

All set up in transition, we were called to the line. We were lined up in fastest to slowest based on the swim times from the previous day and then set off. The two of us that won the swim had a 10 second lead on the third person which was a good amount to pick up some speed and potentially make a break from the field. After setting off we were caught up by the third swimmer and overtaken. I then decided to drop back to the second bike pack knowing fair well they were all very strong competitors in the race. About 10k in we caught back up the the front pack and worked with them until the end of the bike leg (many thanks to Marsh Tracks who have helped me achieve the 11th fastest bike overall).

When dismounting the bike in the front pack I messed up and fell off. These things happen but luckily the adrenaline got me through and I wasted no time getting up and catching back up to the group.

My run has been my weakest element for as long as I can remember. I never seem to have confidence going into the run leg thinking I’m going to make up places. However to my surprise my run wasn’t bad. I felt good and I knew that the training had paid off.

Finishing the race with a smile on my face, I ended up 13th overall and 4th in my age group.

 

What’s next?

I’m currently in taper for the Welsh Easter Swimming Championships from the 18th-22nd April. I’m feeling confident knowing I have put lots of effort into my swim for the last few months.

Again thanks for reading this. I’ll probably be posting updates on how things are going on Facebook or Instagram.

Sharpie