Having gone out to the Championships well in advance of race day I felt I had prepared well whilst on the island. Checked out all parts of the course and covered all 4 disciplines in the hot and humid conditions. The course was flat and straight forward but I knew from the days leading up to the race that heat and hydration were going to play a key part of getting to the finish.
Set up in transition in plenty of time, ran through everything in my mind as to entry and exit points, double checking my markers to pin point where my bike was due to the transition area being so vast.
Swim – This was cut short to 1250m due to the strong current. The build-up in the pen before being called down to the pontoon was intense with each country sticking together, this was the point where it hit home I was racing and what was at stake. I also had a moment thinking about the training I had done and was it all worth it to get to this point, the resounding answer was yes and whatever happened over the next few hours I wanted more of it.
The swim itself was tough, it felt like I was getting nowhere especially as we turned the first set of markers and headed down the long back straight. I honestly felt like I had swam 2000m not 1250m and was not at all surprised that my time was upwards of 28mins. The conditions and type of swim got the better of me.
Bike – Very happy with my bike as I hydrated well and took my gels at the right times (not something I have done well all season). I could have gone a couple of mins quicker but I wanted to feel in decent shape for the run so kept something in the tank. The bike course itself was perfect with great road conditions, hardly any elevation and some beautiful scenery, you really could not have wished for any better. Really focused on keeping a steady cadence of 85-90rpm trying to minimise any spikes or drops. Attention had to be given to drafting and making sure I was not given the yellow card and incurring a 2min penalty.
Run – Felt good out of transition and took on water and ice straight away at the aid station. Used the marina area to tick over and get my body used to the heat and the new upright position after being on the TT. I hit the road section feeling good and started to go past people, I felt like this continued for the majority of the first lap (would be interesting to see my splits if they were available). On the 2nd lap though I hit a wall, a wall of heat followed by a sense of feeling freezing cold, the heat I knew was affecting me. On 2 of the aid stations I actually stopped and walked through whilst taking on-board supplies just to try and regroup and take a moment. The 2nd lap was a war of attrition and I just wanted to get to the line. A total time of nearly 49mins was not want I wanted. I did finish (some did not) with a total time of 2hrs and 28mins. I had set myself a target time of 2hr 20mins and in the UK this would have been achievable, but Cozumel and the conditions got the better of me.
All in all a fantastic experience, a great race and proud to where the GB kit. My aim now is to compete at more of these events as this really has whet my appetite!