Well... the games was quite the experience. My start to pre-race nervousness for the games was on a Tuesday afternoon, 3 days out of competition. It was supposed to be my last hard workout before the competition. I was running round an orchard in a brick session, when I stepped on an apple, or in a whole, with my left foot....Pop! For a mount there, I thought I’d broken it. It was stiff and In pain. I limped a few strides and then sat on the ground in pain. I moved my able up slightly to check. ‘OK, Ive got movement.’I got up pretty quick and limped up to where Luke was with our bikes. he went straight inside and we taped it up. I tried to walk, and run, but it was painful. I did one more run that day, but it was more in desperation of doing the session before my races, than anything else. I paid for it the next day, waking up with quite the limp. I desperately treated it all day, and was able to walk on it without a limp that night. I left for summer Games the following morning at about 5:30 am and still could feel the pain in my ankle. I thought I probably wouldn’t feel it in the race, and I don’t think I really did. Here’s how my first race went: I knew there were some other good swimmers in the field, and I was expecting to sit on someones feet in the water. I started off hard, more out of nervousness than anything. I saw I had a gap, and then thought, ‘I can’t let up now, I just need to get it as big as i can!’ So I pushed it, not too hard, but swam pretty fast I think. I felt great. I got onto the bike with a 10-15 second lead. I biked hard at the beginning and seemed to increase my lead on those just behind me. I biked hard, but not killing myself. As I started the run, I knew I had it in the bag. I had about a one minute lead, over second. I ran good out of transition, and then styled into a strong pace, but not too hard. I just felt great. I also knew that I had lots more races to go including a duathlon later that afternoon. I won the triathlon in about 1 min 25 seconds. Keagan got second, and Braden got bronze, with Connor in third. This made it a 1,2,3,4 sweep for zone 2 Thompson Okanagan.
The duathlon was new to me. I’d never done one before, but was confident in my running abilities and was going to try to drop them on the bike. At the start of the duathlon I ran fast with the leaders, but didn’t feel like I was overexerting myself. Keagan leg the pack, but for the last 200 metres or so, I passed, showing my strength, hurting him a bit, and trying to get just a few strides on anyone into transition. I started the bike and left right away. I rode REALLY hard, and managed to get about 10-15 second on anyone by T2. I started the run and ran HARD. I had a big gap, and relaxed only slightly near the end maybe 95% instead of 100%. Oh man it hurt! My kilometre time for the first run was a 2:46, and the second run was a 3:09. That gave me my second gold of the games.
In the aquathlon the next morning I swam extra hard, and ran extra hard as well. Theres not much relaxing in a 300m swim and a 1km run! I won the race by 22 seconds.
The mixed relay was a non-medal event, and was more of a fun thing. Coaches competed in it as well in there own teams. My team had a great first three legs, leaving us in contention with the first team of ‘athletes’. We were in fourth when I started and I managed to catch up on the swim and bike. Our team got first place.
The last event of the games was called the F1 event. A super short, mini triathlon supposed to consist of a 200m swim, and 3 km draft legal bike, and a 1 kilometre run. Due to poor water quality in a test the day before, the triathlon was converted to another duathlon consisting of a 1km run, a 3km draft legal bid, and another 1km run. This made me nervous. I wanted that cushion of time from the swim, but just wasn’t going to have it. I started off hard, much harder than last time, Keagan pushing at the front, and me on his heels. I did this for the first 800m, before he started to slow. Again, I passed him, trying to get a few strides. Coming into transition with Keagan and Braden made it seem possible for them to draft with me. my plan was to just ride as hard as I could, and not risk anything on the second run. I broke them right off the start of the ride. I went hard and dropped them. Accelerating on the first turn, and on the turn around. Starting the run I just sprinted, it was my last race and I just went HARD. I ran a 3:08, to claim my fourth gold medal of the games.
The games were a great experience for me/ I got to do so much racing, experimenting with strategies, learning my competitors, and building more confidence. Huge shout out to the cit o abbots ford, and especially the thousands of volunteers who so graciously made it all happen! Also to my sponsors for all their help, Dr. Snow at the Valeo Health Clinic (whom treated me at the summer games as well), Fresh Air, Cannondale, Eload, and especially Luke and Balance Point Racing!
Also a big thanks to On Running for the awesome racing shoes!
I wen’t into the race with these tactics: Swim as hard as I can…Do whatever I have to in order to come out of the water with Jackson. The combined Junior elite and youth elite race made it very interesting and also more competitive. I knew that Jackson would want to come out first. He’s so strong, and always aims to be that guy. I was going to settle into the bike back which I predicted would be me, Jackson, and Josh(another strong swimmer), and then try to break on lap two. Starting the run, I didn’t really know what I’d do. My conservative side told me to keep it easy, run with them, and then try to break, but my competitive side told me “run hard out of T2 and try to drop them!” I somehow just knew I wouldn’t have the patience to wait. For my own peace of mind, I thought I would take of hard.
The morning of the race, I’m usually quite nervous. Should I wear my wetsuit was the big issue this time, but I decided yes, and I’m glad I did. The start of the swim was great. I positioned myself into the first 3 right off the bat. As I saw Jackson move up to pass me in the first 75 metres I just got right onto his hip, which quickly became his feet. After that I didn’t let it get any bigger than a metre between my fingers and his toes. I didn’t want to give any gap. I made the mistake last year of slacking off a little bit, and then losing his very feet and not being able to make it up. So today I just gave it everything I had to stay right on his feet. Often hitting them stroke after stroke. I just didn’t want to give any edge or risk of losing them. My run to transition was quite slow (struggling to find my wetsuit strap), but was lucky that Jackson also had a slow T1. I was first onto the bike, but my slow start made it possible for Josh Ogilvie to close the gap in the first hundred metres or so. At this point I knew it was just us three, and so just settled in, taking my turn, and letting them take theirs. I’m strong on hills, so the hill each lap might have taken a bit more out of their legs than mine, but I felt good, and relatively in control. On the second lap, with the wind to our backs, I waited for Josh to take his turn, and then took off like a bullet, immediately into the aero bars, and driving hard. I had a gap. Josh quickly went to the front again, as Jackson was unable to respond. At the first turn around I knew I was pretty well caught, and didn’t feel like fighting any more. Soon after, they tried to break me on the hill, but I quickly responded and it was more of a surge. I came off the bike shoulder to shoulder with Josh, and Jackson on our heels. As we were exiting the transition after a relatively even T2, I hesitated, but then just sprinted, looking over my shoulder to see I was getting a gap. I quickly established my gap and ran away. I the settled into a had, but not overly hard pace for the rest of the race. In the end I won by about 1 min 30 seconds over Josh who was second overall, and first Junior Elite. Keegan got second in the youth elite category about 4 min back overall. Lincoln, my brother, was just 9 seconds from second place, with an amazing swim bike, and running 3:43 kilometres, but was just outrun by 3rd! I was very pleased with my race. Especially my swim and run. I swam faster than ever, and I ran faster than ever. I still need to develop that ability to go solo though. If I’m comfortable in the pack, I should work to be able to break.
Well...I didn't really know what to expect, this being my first ever flat out bike races. I'm used to having to hop off my bike and then go run... Friday: The first race was the time trial. I'd been having some pretty good time trials at the BOA balance point ones is Kelowna, so I thought I'd do well. I started ok, but had some trouble getting my Heart rate up at the beginning. The weather was cold and rainy, but not too bad. I biked hard the way out, and then felt better on the way back. I hammered it up the hills and flats at the end. I got 10th place in the U17. Afterward, I was immediately thinking about the next day, hoping for a better result and feeling more confident.
Criterium Race: I got a proper warmup in at the Crit race, and was ready when the horn blew. I started out fast with the group, with a pretty good starting position(in the second row). Those 180 degree turns every lap made for a lot of HARD accelerations, and easy for breaks. I was strong, able to bridge myself up, and close some small gaps. I was sitting too for back in the pack, when a break went off the front. This made me fighting with others for maybe top 9. We worked hard, and managed to catch some fallen stragglers. I also worked with others in my group to close a break from someone who had been in our pack. This made it a fight for 6th place. I was ready for a sprint, round the lap 180 degree corner, I started standing and then kicked it into a full on sprint...just to have my calf cramp! I thought "no slacking off now!" As I pushed through that cramp with everything I had. I managed to out sprint everyone in my group, giving me the 6th place. Connor and a few other kids were ahead of me. The winner was about 45 seconds ahead at the end of the race.
Road race: After the crit, I thought to myself, "add hills, and that will knock off another 3-4 guys." The morning of the road race I started to get pretty nervous. This is what I'd been waiting for all weekend. 84 km of...I didn't really know what. I'd never done a flat out road race! We started at a slow pace, people talking, laughing, and others getting into position, when all of a sudden...Bang! Someone goes off the front, the gears all start to click up, and your sprinting as hard as you can. I had failed to get into a good position, and was blocked with about 2 guys on my left, and another on my right. I knew I had to go with the guys off the front! I managed to get out, and had to bridge a bit as we started the grueling 4km hill that was near the start of each lap. Then the pace slowed, just before there was another break attempt. A crash with 3 guys on the hill (of stronger riders), broke up the competition a bit, and played into my favor. At the top of the hill, It was me, and three riders from TaG cycling. A kid named Connor from Kelowna, a Ben, and another kid. When we looked back, there was a distinctive gap. They were unable to close it. This made it up to me to break a TaG sweep. They tried to break me...again and again! I had to absolutely sprint! On the second lap, and attempt by Ben and Connor backfired, and ended up dropping their buddy, as I hung on. I managed to stay another lap, before I was dropped. I thought It could be my race to win until that point. I thought, If I could hang on, I could possibly out sprint them at the end. When I was dropped, I thought, "it's just a 30km time trial!" I didn't know what my gap was to the next pack, so I was on my own, biking as hard as I could, just hoping that they wouldn't catch me. The last 5km, my legs started cramping BAD. I'd had some cramping sensations earlier, but it wasn't TOO bad. But then it happened... One leg, and then the other. I was just like "not now!" I biked up the last hill before the finish with a pulsing right thigh, and holding on for dear life. I hung on.. securing the bronze. The pack had caught me by 4-5 minutes, ending only a bit over a minute behind me. Biking in the dark, not knowing where I was in the race, can be quite terrifying.
Iv'e learned lots about tactics this weekend, and am excited to use those tactics in my Triathlon racing.
Cheers to Connor and Ben who were so strong!
For the first draft legal race of the year, there wasn’t much drafting. I swam pretty well, but didn’t really have anyone to race, so I was fairly relaxed. I was first onto the bike, and biked hard the first lap. When I came to the turnaround to start the second lap, the lead pack of junior elites were starting their ride. Youth elites were not allowed to draft with junior elites, so I pulled up next to them, and then passed them. I played cat and mouse with them for the next quarter of my ride, and for the last half a lap, just sat behind them, giving them space. I just felt great! It’s a big confidence booster to me to know that I can bike with the likes of Michael Millic and other top Junior elites from Canada. I got onto the run and had some trouble finding my stride for the first half, but then I just got the hamstrings firing, and started to fly. I felt great at the end, winning a sprint finish with a relay athlete. I ran 3 20’s. I was less than two minutes behind first place for the Junior Elite men in the whole thing, which I'm happy with for now. I'm learning so much every race, and know Ill do better each time. I can’t wait for the next one.
- I am going to try to find my stride right off the start getting my hamstrings firing.
- I'm going to swim much harder, even if I had a big lead.
- I am going to bike just like last time. HARD.
Well… A good way to start off the season. Top two boys and top two girls automatically qualify for summer games so I had to do well. I showed up at the triathlon in Kamloops in time to set up my transition but still with plenty of time to prepare for the race. After my Majo warmup routine, music, and Spirotiger, I was ready. I started the race and felt good, my swim was fairly relaxed but still really good speed. I swam a 4:39 on the 400 m and was right onto the bike. I had about a 40 second lead after the swim. The ride was pretty flat, only a slight false flat on the way out, and then slight down on the way back. I managed to make a wrong turn right off the start of the bike, and later on at the dismount (don’t ask me how;), but still managed to come off of the bike with about a 1 min 20 second lead over second place. I started the run and had some trouble finding my stride once I got tired, but still managed to gain another 1 minute and 20 seconds or so. My shoulders were quite sore during the run which made it hard to pump my arms and run normally. The fact that I've grown so much this last year or two is making it a bit difficult for me to find my stride. But I will.
So I won the race and qualified and pumped up for summer games!
Things I will work on/ do differently for next time:
I will go straight unless there is someone saying to go right or left :)
I will work on finding my stride at the beginning of the run so that I have it for the rest of the run.
I will make sure that my shoulders are loose before the race to allow for proper movement of my arms.
Just came over this video again...Me at the Edmonton ITU Race last year (I am in the yellow and black)
*Hey Luke, notice what I have in my right hand?*
Evening Run turns into a mess! Just tie em' up! I actually ripped out part of my shoe lace when I fell. I should have learned my lesson after I fell the first time! Second time got me hard!!
Well, as race season is rolling around, spring is definitely here, and the thought of summer is in the front of our minds, I thought I'd post my 2016 race schedule.
2016 Race Schedule:
So here's my first blog post! Its only fitting to do it about a new bike! I did my first ride on my new Cannondale Super Six Evo today and am loving it! I went up Knox and was super stoked at how effortlessly it rolled over the pavement! Super stiff. This bike is definitely true to its word, no way around it, it definitely specializes in "climbin' like a billy goat, and nail biting descents." The cornering was beautiful, and It plummets on the descents just as good as it flies up the hills!
Big thanks to Luke for the great bike fit this morning! Also, a huge thanks to Michael at Cannondale, and the staff at Kelowna Cycle for all their help, building the bike and all!
- 16 year old Junior Elite Triathlete.
Long Term Goals
-Have podium finishes in all of my Junior Elite races 16-19.
-Qualify for the ITU World Junior Championship in 2017.
-Win the Youth Olympic games in Argentina in 2018
-Be in contention at the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo Japan.
-Win an ITU World Championship.
-Race to win the 2024 Olympics alongside my brother:)
-Win an Ironman World championship after my ITU days.