Yarrawonga Mulwala Multisport Festival - Martin Sprong @ 19 Nov 2017
But somehow I managed to find myself lining up for the Olympic Distance event this year and luckily the weather was in our favour. The 2PM start allowed for everyone to take it easy, share their race strategy and slowly build up the race nerves.
There was plenty of chatter between Talia and I about the swim. She would be starting 5 minutes after me, making her think she could “easily” catch me, but I was semi-confident I was able to keep the Super Fish behind me.
From the start, I got caught up in the swim mayhem and to give myself a break I quickly had to switch to breaststroke. The first 400m was a real struggle, but luckily I found my rhythm when I turned around at one the buoys and saw there was some clear space for me to swim. This gave me plenty of motivation and I was able to catch athletes along the way.
Getting out of the water and running into T1 I noticed I swam around the 24min mark, which I was pleased with. Talia and I positioned our bikes opposite each other so we could keep eye on each other, not that we are competitive, but seeing her bike still in transition made me smile, she didn’t catch me. I knew it.
The wind picked up a fair bit during the afternoon, which I was happy about because that would favour me and my cycling background. The idea was to go flat out on the bike, which was not easy with the amount of cross wind, but it was motivating to be able to jump from wheel to wheel. I saw a couple of Nuna’s along the way and gave them a good shout. After the first turn around I saw Michael Bagshaw, and set myself to catch him. This didn’t turn out to be that easy, as Michael was riding really strong showing good form.
Arriving back into transition in just under an hour made me realise I was in for a good race here, I just had to run a steady 10km - easier said than done.
The first 2km of the run was slightly uphill against a strong headwind and I quickly realised the bike had taken a bit out of my legs. However, seeing so many Nuna’s out on course and supporting on the side really motivated me to keep pushing. A special mention goes to Stricko who was the happiest person out there (sorry if I missed a few high fives during the run mate).
Halfway through the run I heard someone shouting “Hey NUNA. Looking over my shoulder I saw an official chasing me down on her bike. She kindly asked me where my race bib was. Shit, I forgot my race bib in transition. I quickly made up that it blew away in transition, and the race official let me go with on “unofficial warning”.
This cleared the way to finish strong in a time of 2.06.43 and 5th position in my age category (30-34). I was of course stoked with my result and it was great to share and hear everyone’s race story after the finish. The Yarrawonga triathlon is such a well organised event that I would highly recommend people join the Nuna crew next year.