Next on the calendar was the first Duathlon of the season. The Bedford Autodrome World Duathlon Qualifier. I had decided not to try and qualify due to the race being in the middle of exams and I already have a busy race calendar around that time anyway.
It was an incredibly foggy morning, you could not see the course at all from the start line. The 5km run, 20km bike (draft legal) and 2.5km run was somewhere ahead of us. As the gun went I set off hard, trying to stay with the lead group, but after a few hundred metres I realised that was not going to work. I settled in to my rhythm and came into transition completing the first run in 16:53. After a small mistake in transition, forgetting to take my run shoes off, I mounted the bike and found myself in a group of 7 or 8. There were one or two people that wanted to do all the work for some reason, but as a group we didn't make much progress and on the second lap of four we were caught now making us a group of 15 and now the increased dramatically. Soon we came into the final few bends of the last lap and a good friend of mine from rgActive, Colum, shouted at me to get on his wheel and he gave everything to get me into transition first. Thanks Colum! Finishing the bike in just over 30minutes I set out on the final run. My legs were feeling tired having given a lot on the bike to get the group working and putting in the odd attack to test my legs. The last run in 10:16 I was a bit disappointed with, but an overall time of 58:33 was pleasing. Overall I finished 6th in my age group. I would have also qualified for the Worlds so a good race nevertheless.
The final event was the second British Modern Biathlon Championships. This time the Schools Championships were held at Crystal Palace Sports Centre. This was another tough event with the best Biathletes in Britain from previous regional rounds committing for the British title. The swim for my age group came first and in a time of 2:27 I was in 8th place and happy with the time. It was nothing special and a long way behind the stronger swimmers, but it was a good time considering we were in a long course pool. After a 45 min wait it was time for the run. Four laps of the running track making up a fast 1600m run. The group set of fast with me and two other athletes separating ourselves from the field. The pace was fast but also comfortable, however going into the final lap someone had bridged across the gap and joined our group. As he joined with 300m to go he went past us with someone else and I tried to follow. I couldn't keep up the pace but with 100m to go I was in third and knew I had to keep third place. Sprinting across the line in a time of 4:44 I was pleased but annoyed as the winning time I have done before. I finished the Championships in 7th place but felt I could have done better.
As the Biathlon and Cross Country season ends, the Duathlon and Triathlon season starts with tomorrow the British Elite Duathlon Championships at Windsor Park. I will be racing at 2:30 pm in the Junior Elite wave. Hopefully it'll be a good race with another blog next week with my results.
A big shoutout and thank you to Pedal Potential and Zone 3 for their continued sponsorship and support throughout this year and I look forward to the year ahead with them. Thanks for reading and here's a few photos!