Usually, you can judge how happy I am with a race by the time between the race and race report. Almost 2 weeks passed since Ironman Hawaii, so obviously I’m not very satisfied with this one. I’m aware that I often have high expectations. That motivates me and pushes me forward. In the world of professional sport, once you become content with your position you start moving backwards. Others are improving while you’re standing in place.
I didn’t expect very high placing at Hawaii this year, but I expected a solid race that would set me up for something much better in the years to come. My performance turned out to be worse than my worst expectations. Looking at the time gaps, I was better at my first ironman distance race in 2011 while I was still working full time.
Kona is one of the races where swim is very important. It’s said that you can’t win the race in the swim but you can loose it there. This time, I lost it within the first 10 minutes. I had a solid start, at one point I started loosing positions and eventually found myself 5-10 meters behind the group. For the next kilometer I held that gap but couldn’t close it and then the elastic snapped.
Once on the bike I let Thomschke and Sanders go as I felt they went out too hard. That meant I was alone from the first pedal stroke. I was hoping that with a solid ride I can still catch a lot of guys who over-pace in the first half of the ride. Turns out not a lot of guys cracked. My wattage was not as expected but not too bad either. With an average of 3,6 W/kg I was expecting to be in a much better position than I actually was. By the start of the run I realized this will be a race to forget. I run a solid marathon but it was hard to motivate myself to push any harder.
Looking from the bright side I gained an experience that will be useful in the future. If my swim was at last year’s level the end result would probably be much different. Now, I first have to figure out what went wrong with the swim this year and fix it. I’ll try to qualify for Kona again next year. It will be harder as I only have around 300 points and at this time last year I already had 1600. I’m not lacking any motivation, and I can’t wait to go back to the Big Island and do a proper race.