On Sunday 9th June 2013 Lake Bala welcomed 265 athletes to the 2000m swim, 90km bike and 20km run course.
Racepace athlete Wendy Drake, who fits in her training alongside being a full-time working Mum, has recently put in a huge amount of effort to prepare for this race. As with a lot of athletes, this race is part of a bigger plan, a plan which culminates in July with the fantastic Switzerland Ironman.
With husband Paul and daughters Rosie and Evie supporting, Wendy was very motivated for this latest challenge, getting out of the swim in one piece was her first goal. As we know open water swims can be tough, especially for people with a history of limited swimming.
It was tough but the first goal was successfully completed. To swim nearly all of the 2000m in freestyle is testimony to a great attitude and one that was carried all the way through the race.
Out of the swim into T1 and after the small matter of sorting out a tangle between the timing chip and her wetsuit Wendy set off on the 90km ride. A new bike position, race wheels and some recently acquired confidence descending, contributed to her being very happy with the bike leg. However fit you are though, getting off the bike after 3hrs of solid riding and running 20km is tough – especially in heat. Yes Lake Bala was the scene for a glorious day in Wales and athletes had to deal as best they could with this ‘welcomed’ curve ball.
We had a simple plan for the run – to get through it. It can be ‘easy’ to come up with plans for races but you can forget that sometimes the sheer difficulty of the event demands a simple plan. The heat did encourage some athletes to take on more fluids than they possibly needed but it’s hard to judge sometimes – especially when you haven’t had the opportunity to train in those conditions
Wendy did exactly what she set out to do. She got through the swim, rode steady state, smooth & on the aero-bars as much as possible and set off on the run calm and at a conservative pace. Most of the best runners know that it’s not ‘conservative’ it’s the right pace to be able to hold all the way to the finish. At the finish one of Wendy’s daughters, Evie was Super-ready to run the last 100m with her Super-Mum.
Rosie and Evie have been so inspired by their Mum’s performance, they both want to do the ‘Iron-Kids’- a swim and run event held at the Switzerland Ironman in July.
A job very well done…….roll on the big one.