Josh Rix was one of 7 Australian pros who completed the 2011 Abu Dhabi International Triathlon. There were 14 starters and with the tough conditions and it being one of the first major races for many in 2011 we saw many pull out during the race due to a number of reasons. A call was made to make the race a non wetsuit race which left many of the competitors scratching their heads due to the relatively cool water temperature. Overall race times were slower than last year with the winner Frederik Van Lierde finishing almost 7 mins slower than last year when he placed 5th overall.
Craig Alexander (6) and Luke Bell (7) were only three and a half minutes off the winning time with Crowie finishing 6 seconds ahead of Bell.
Josh reports in on his race at Abu Dhabi and paints a good picture of what took place for many in the field.
The week leading up to the race was really nice then it got hot the day before. Race day was super windy (much like Challenge Wanaka) and hot hot hot!
The swim was okay but I lost touch with front group and came out a couple of minutes down, although only 30seconds behind Macca and Tissink. I was with Vanhoenecker and Gambles so it was okay but not what I wanted. The water was cold and they made a â€˜call’ to make it a non wetsuit for pros. This was a bit of mystery decision.
I got stuck into the bike, settled down well and rode with Joe Gambles, Marino Vanhoenecker, Timo Bracht, Matty White, Tim Berkel and we chased down a group with Chris McCormack, Raynard Tissink, Cameron Brown and Eneko Llanos. We were nice and comfy cycling into the wind at 41-43km/h then we did a ripping lap of the F1 circuit (which is totally awesome) and as we came back with a tailwind Macca dropped the hammer. No one wanted to let him go so we all stepped up to 60 km/hr and I ran out of gears using my 54×11! Tissink said we were pushing 350 Watts with a tailwind. So we all hammered back into town and saw we were only 1:30 behind Luke Bell, Craig Alexander, Dirk Bockel etc and then somehow in the age group traffic I lost them (Bracht, Llanos, Brown, Vanhoenecker) They got away and rode up to that front group. Myself and the rest of the group headed back out into the headwind of the second lap when visibility was halved as the sand was whipped up by the crazy wind. Berkel, Hoffman and White joined us as we rolled on – we saw Paul Matthews cruising and people were popping everywhere.
We battled on and as we finished the second lap I started to get tired in the legs. As we approached 170km I started to get some twinges in the legs from fatigue (not cramps) and realised I just didn’t have the strength to smash thru til 200km. (Too much potential for an injury) So I rolled the rest of the bike out and went for a run to finish it…. legs felt good and I just tapped out the 20k, but pulled up sore in new spots.
Simple lack of performance explanation: I just didn’t have the bike miles in the legs.
Conclusion: Great race, very tough. Top 10 guys pretty much top 10 at Hawaii so enough said — the best showed their class and strength endurance.
The bottom line is that it is a great course and great concept but we just scored the worst possible conditions.
Great city to visit and learn about.
|1||F. Van Lierde (BEL)||6:43:14|
|2||M. Vanhoenacker (BEL)||+0:17|
|3||D. Bockel (LUX)||+0:28|
|4||R. Tissink (ZAF)||+0:33|
|5||S. Sudrie (FRA)||+2:35|
|6||C. Alexander (AUS)||+3:32|
|7||L. Bell (AUS)||+3:38|
|8||F. Al-Sultan (DEU)||+5:08|
|9||T. Bracht (DEU)||+6:26|
|10||A. Starykowicz (USA)||+7:09|
|11||J. Rapp (USA)||+10:00|
|12||B. Hoffman (USA)||+18:17|
|13||S. Bayliss (GBR)||+22:11|
|14||B. Rhodes (NZL)||+25:26|
|15||S. Riesen (CHE)||+29:33|
|16||E. van der Meer (NLD)||+30:18|
|17||D. Plese (ZAF)||+33:27|
|18||J. Rix (AUS)||+44:26|
|19||R. Melderis (LUX)||+1:02:45|
|20||K. Taddonio (USA)||+1:15:43|
|21||J. Granger (AUS)||+2:03:09|
|1||J. Dibens (GBR)||7:14:23|
|2||C. Steffen (CHE)||+5:22|
|3||C. Morrison (GBR)||+16:49|
|4||R. Joyce (GBR)||+17:46|
|5||A. Naeth (CAN)||+18:11|
|6||L. Cave (GBR)||+19:57|
|7||L. Zelenkova (CZE)||+32:11|
|8||J. Lawn (NZL)||+33:47|
|9||B. Granger (AUS)||+34:46|
|10||E. Lidbury (GBR)||+37:07|
|11||J. Jacobs (USA)||+44:16|
|12||L. Ribes (USA)||+52:03|
|13||H. Gollnick (USA)||+54:55|
|14||C. Sym (AUS)||+55:53|
|15||K. MÃ¶ller (DEU)||+55:59|
|16||R. Paxton (AUS)||+1:44:38|
|AUS Non Finishers|