Strong Racing by Sabrina in Elsinore
Sabrina Stadelmann’s highlight for the first half of this season was the European Championship race at the IM 70.3 Elsinore. She was well focused and really wanted to win her Age Group as she did so many times before. However, this time it didn’t work out perfectly, Sabrina finished 2nd and became Vice-European Champ. Sabrina had a really good swim and was pushing well on the bike. But she got tears in her eyes. Big groups of Age Groupers were passing her and they even told her she should hang on their back like all the others. While Sabrina wanted to win it by fair play she ‘lost’ the race by not willing to cheat. She ran a very good half marathon but one lady was approaching from behind with the 2nd fastest run time of the day in the whole ladies field. Initially we were sure Sabrina won the title, however it turned out that an athlete who started 10min behind her in the rolling start (and also finshed almost 10min behind her) had actually the fastest time. Because of the big difference in starting times, neither I nor Sabrina were aware that somebody is approaching from behind. This is a bit of tough luck and also shows a more general problem of how age group „races“ are set-up. At least championship races should allow for real racing not only amongst the pros but also amongst each age group. However, we’re over it and already focussing on Sabrina’s next race, the ITU European Sprint Champs coming weekend in Dusseldorf. What really counts, is not the ranking but the performance on that day. And Sabrina’s times were fantastic in all 3 disciplines, showing continued improvement. More than that, I’m proud about her mental strength to not let herself down after she saw so many athletes riding together in big groups. Well done Sabrina, you’re a real champ!
Jennifer Wood became 7th in her Age Group at IM 70.3 Luxemburg. After a good swim Jen put in a good effort on the bike but the other girls were killing it. Somehow she couldn’t find her run legs but at the end she was not far off my estimated time. Jen had enough in the tank, to finish the race with a sprint catching the girl in front of her: ‘Glad I’m not the girl in 8th – I beat her by 5 seconds. That must hurt, right?’ It was already Jen’s 2nd Top-10 finish this season and we are working on installing that bigger engine to move up the ranks.
Adi Glaettli from Switzerland was doing IM 70.3 Luxemburg. Finishing 11th, he just missed the Top-10. He had a very good swim. Glad to see the changes in technique and all the hard work he put in paing off. Also Adi’s bike was very strong. He struggled a bit on the run, but he roade hard, it was hot and it was his first proper test in the season. We keep building his engine and I’m looking forward to his next races.
Diana Riesler had to reorganise her whole season planning due to a cold end of April which lasted very long. After racing Keszthely Triathlon last weekend Diana started at the European Champs in Elsinore as well. While she always thinks that she is too slow for the 70.3 races she gave her best on that day and became 8th with 4:21hrs in a strong field. She lost her swim group and was far back after this section of the race. However, it was a handy swim course, where you could walk alongside the swimmers, which allowed me to video-tape the swim start. We did a thorough analysis and could define where Diana made wrong decisions in the first 400m of the swim when the groups sorted. That is very helpful for her next races. In T1 Diana’s helmet was blown away by the wind and the visor got lost. She ran after it and while doing so all the other girls were out on the bike. Unfortunately she couldn’t close the gap to the others on the bike as she normally does. Then she suffered a bit on the run but at the end she did a solid race. We got a proper race effort into her legs – and that was all we were looking for. On top, she got some valuable Kona points.
Another come-back race had Sandra Schoeni at the local sprint distance triathlon in Zug, Switzerland. After a really long injury period and a tough struggle at Ironman Lanzarote I’m really happy that her form is coming back. Sandra had the fastest bike split in her Age Group what helped to the get on the podium in 3rd position at the end. Well done, Sandra!
Pascale Truempy could improve her time from last year at the Zuger Triathlon, Switzerland, by 5mins! She had a good non-wetsuit swim and pushed very had on her bike. With the 2nd fastest bike split on her Age Group of the day it was maybe a bit too hard to have a really good run at the end. Pascale was a bit unlucky to catch 4th place again but at the end she is happy about her new PB on that course.
Alicja Medak just missed a podium spot at IM 70.3 Pescara. She was not feeling super-fresh going into the race but did surprisingly well. Bike was a solid effort, run was very strong, she even outran her husband – which is always a nice-to-have. Legs were turning nicely. The altitude training in St. Moritz helped a lot. Alicja had 9th women overall run time (including 5 pros). Unfortunately her age group was the strongest. She I would have been 2nd in the younger one and won the next one! However, she was close to even 2nd place in her age group. Already a bit quicker transition (similar to Diana in Elisnore, all what could go wrong went wrong…) would have moved her up the ranks. Next race, back in the podium!