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Archive for March, 2011

Mekong River Triathlon Fesival

Tuesday, March 29th, 2011

So it has been a strange few days in Thailand. I arrived in Chiangsaen Thursday evening to find all competitors standing outside the race hotel in next to nothing. Was a little confusing, thought perhaps an alarm had gone off but as soon as the door opened and we hopped out everyone came rushing over asking me “did you feel it” my look of what the hell are you guys on showed I obviously was oblivious to what they were talking about and so they said the earthquake! Thought they were pulling my leg for a while but apparently it was measured at 6.9 just over the border in Burma. About an hour later I was in bed drifting off quite nicely when my bed started shaking. I sat up thinking I just had a really strange dream but then I could hear a stampede down the stairs with people fleeing the hotel. Quite a few athletes moved mattresses outside and set up mosquito nets but I just wanted my bed the night before the race!

Friday was Aquathlon time, 1500m swim downstream then a 5 (and a bit) k run around the ancient streets of Chiangsaen. I didn’t get the best start in the swim and had to fight my way to the front but was first out the water in a little over 13 minutes. Going out on to the run I just ran really hard for 2.5k until  I could see I had enough of a lead to cruise home and save the legs for Sundays triathlon.

Sunday morning we were all woken up again from another after shock an hour before my alarm was set for……I hate being woken up especially when I cant get back to sleep!

Race plan was to put pressure on in the swim and then go hard on the bike and see who would go with me. Swim start was better and had about 10 seconds on the chasing pack. One competitor from Hong Kong King Fun Ho got on to my wheel and we went hard and managed to open up a nice gap after the first of 8 laps. Each lap the time was getting bigger so we pushed on and increased it to just over 2 minutes going on to the run. I was very pleased with the bike, felt really comfortable and legs felt fresh when I ran in to transition so I put the hammer down first 1k. At the end of the run I had put 2 minutes in to Ho who came in second. Shame the swim was short, bike and run long as it doesn’t really help me see where I am at regarding my speed but I pushed hard the whole way and had a good win so take the positives away!

Good weekend for me, some prize money won and also won a free trip with Asian Oasis boat cruises which I hope to use after Phuket 70.3 in December.

Back in Krabi now and greeted with some awful weather. It hasn’t stopped raining and homes are being flooded so not ideal fro training, on the plus side the pool is now full and water temp is now cooler!!

Less than a week left now then back to Jersey for a nice FAT STEAK!

Singapore 70.3 race report

Monday, March 21st, 2011

Yesterday was my first half ironman! Quite a tough day in the office compared to ITU races but something that i really enjoyed even though i pretty much wobbled over the finish line.

The swim was relatively easy and on the first lap i was setting the pace and swimming comfortably inside what i would call a tough pace. A lot less aggressive than Olympic races and pace slower. On the second lap i decided to sit in behind the guys on my feet and conserve some energy just like Doc told me to do. At the end of the swim i was in 3rd place just behind Gemmel and team mate Dave Dellow.

Going out on the bike i was a little apprehensive and really didn’t know what to expect so i just sat (Legally) behind and stayed away from the front, again under docs orders. Midway in to the second lap the chasing group caught us and we all stayed together until the start of the run. The bike course was pretty dangerous at times with age groupers jumping in between us without even looking behind to see who was behind so that meant we had to drop safely behind them until they got dropped meaning we would have double the distance to chase back on. Pretty annoying and quite tough but luckily we had a race referee alongside us for the whole ride so quite a few of the tag alongs got yellow carded!

The plan for the run was to be sensible! I thought i was being sensible until i blew on the second lap and strolled across the finish line loosing a lot of time to the people i was running alongside. I know this is the one area i really need to work on but its all a learning curve and after all my first attempt doing a 70.3. Oh i never ever thought i would want a coke so much out on that course….i was that desperate i think i may have taken one of the volunteers!!!

So learn from you’re mistakes and take away the positives! Straight back in to it before i head to North Thailand to race an Aquathlon on Friday then Olympic distance triathlon Sunday!

My Island!

Tuesday, March 15th, 2011

Okay so its blog time……..now what do you write for you’re first blog!? Seeing as one of my nicknames in camp is “Jersey Boy” I thought I would write a little bit about ‘MY’ island as I am a very proud islander and not being bias but I honestly do believe it is one of the most beautiful places in the world.

Jersey!

So Jersey is a small island and is a British Crown Dependency off the coast of Normandy, France. Around 90,000 people live on the island mainly in our main parish of St Helier. As well as the island of Jersey itself, the bailiwick includes two groups of small islands that are no longer permanently inhabited, the Minquires and Ecrehous.

Small group of islands only 20 minutes from Grouville Bay

Together with the Bailiwick of Guernsey, it forms the grouping known as the Channel Islands. Like the Isle of Man, Jersey is a separate possession of the Crown and is not part of the United Kingdom. It has an international identity different from that of the UK. The United Kingdom is constitutionally responsible for the defence of Jersey; we are also not part of the European Union but have a special relationship with it, being treated as part of the European Community for the purposes of free trade in goods. Jersey’s economy is based on financial services, tourism, electronic commerce and agriculture; financial services contribute approximately 60 percent of the island’s economy. The island is recognised as one of the leading offshore financial centres.

The Jersey Royal Potato is widely recognised and annually export of the crop has a market value of £35million! The Jersey Cow is also known throughout the world for its rich and creamy milk.

Bet more than one person reading this has tucked in to a bowl of these!

Jersey measures 118.2 square kilometres, including reclaimed land and intertidal zone. It lies in the English Channel, approximately 12 nautical miles (22 km; 14 miles) from the Normandy Peninsula in France and approximately 87 nautical miles (161 km; 100 mi) south of Great Britain. It is the largest and southernmost of the Channel Islands.

St Aubins Harbour.....home to some of the best restaurants and bars in the island.

The climate is temperate with mild winters and cool summers. The average annual temperature on the island is 11.6 °C. The mean annual total sunshine is 1912 hours. Although this is a mean the island can get very warm with most of the beaches around the island being full during the summer. The terrain for cycling consists of a plateau sloping from long sandy bays in the south to rugged cliffs in the north. The plateau is cut by valleys running generally north-south.

Jersey history is influenced by its strategic location between the northern coast of France and the southern coast of England; the island’s recorded history extends over a thousand years.

Evidence of Bronze Age and early Iron Age settlements can be found in many locations around the island. Archaeological evidence of Roman influence has been found, in particular the coastal headland site at Le Pinacle, Les Landes. (this probably isn’t very interesting to most of you)!

In recognition for help given to him during his exile in Jersey in the 1640s, Charles II gave George Carteret bailiff and governor, a large grant of land in the American Colonies, which he promptly named New Jersey…….so for all those that ask where I am from and when I say Jersey with my English accent and then reply to me saying…oh “New Jersey” don’t be surprised if i get annoyed!

During World War II, Jersey was occupied by Nazi Germany from 1 July 1940 until 9 May 1945 (when Germany surrendered). Scattered around the island are memories of the past with fortifications and bunkers along the coastline. I even have a German bunker under my house!

Gorey Castle which was heavily fortified during WW11

So as you can see Jersey has plenty to offer for everyone. Its also a great place to train, cycling can be very tough along the north coast of the Island and it has numerous cliff path trails that can really push you to you’re limits but the great thing about the island is whilst you are working hard you can also enjoy the views along the coast of France or that “smaller’ Island of Guernsey. Jersey has a rivalry between Guernsey very similar to that of England vs Scotland!!

If Jersey sounds like an interesting place for you to visit or even for a training holiday just get in touch and i will be more than willing to give you all the info you need!