Wednesday 22 August 2012

World MTBO race 1

I'll have to skip some of my days of information on the blog to update you on today's event. Today (Monday) was the long distance qualification race. To explain, in my grade of women's elite there were over 70 entrants in the long distance race while only 60 places available in the long distance final which is on Sat. 25th. So today, we all had to ride in 2 heats and the fastest 30 from each heat go through to Saturday's final. With the 2 heats, there are 2 women leaving the start at the same time but they are on different courses.

I completed my course in 66min 35sec while the winner of my heat was one of my Budapest roommates, Ceci, in 55.15. I came in 27th so I've qualified for the final on Sat. Yay!

At the start we had a new thing to do that I haven't done in mtbo but always happens in foot o events. We had control descriptions given to us separately to the map. It's odd enough for us to get control descriptions on the map, let alone have to cut them with scissors from the edge of the map and put them in our arm description holder. It all went smoothly enough though. I'm pleased i had my holder. I had it for my compass but I've moved the compass to the top tube of my bike. I'm enjoying it being there actually, and have referred to it more often rather than just when fixing an error as I did when it was on my arm and not easily seen. The interesting thing is that we needed descriptions because some controls were off track.

The other thing I'm getting used to is that yellow which is open ground is forbidden to ride on. Back home its allowable, whether it's possible or quicker is another matter. Yellow here is cultivated land or parks that can't be ridden on. 50% yellow is open and allowable to be ridden. Still, it does not necessarily mean it's the quickest way to go. However, we needed to take note of 50% yellow because some of the quicker route choices on this course were off track where allowable.

It was very hot. Up to 37C some think.

Some of the girls wouldn't have been riding to full capacity since it was a qualification round, but I was still pretty pleased to have my split to the first control only 11sec from the quickest and my last split to the finish being equal fastest with the overall winner. My ex-track and field athletics sprinting may be coming to the fore :) or perhaps it was that there were some others beside me to race for the line!

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