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ITU Duathlon World Championships in Spain - Azukile Simayile's race report

07 Jul 2016

It was a great opportunity to qualify for the World Duathlon Champs, 5 June 2016. Fortunately I was already training for our XCO races so I had a good base. My training went well and I headed to Spain, 4 days before the race. I stayed in Candas, which was outside Aviles where the race was being held. I unfortunately I did not feel too well, but thought it was just nerves.

RACE DAY

I woke up in the morning feeling nauseous and I knew that it’s not going to be my best day out there. I just told myself that there is no turning back I have to give it my all. When I arrived at the race village, I checked who is in my age group,  but that didn’t change my race plan. 

Azu-Duathlon Spain -1Run1 (2 laps of 5km)

We started as wave 1 two groups together (age 20-24 and 25-29). In the first 2.5km I was really struggling, I felt like I might vomit and my stomach was loose. At the end of the first lap I was in the leading group, we were seven guys in front heading on to second lap. The guys picked up the pace and I could not hold on so I decided to do my own race ending up in 10th place on the first run. 
Azu-Duathlon Spain -3


Azu-Duathlon Spain -2Transition1

On my way into the transition I could see the guys heading out onto the bike course, and I hadn’t even entered transition yet. I remember thinking that this was going to be a hard day at the office. If I didn’t finish first in my wave I  wouldn’t finish first overall. On with the helmet and then a fast run out of transition. A successful flying mount and now it was time to put my head down and push some watts to do a lot of catching up (once again). 

Bike

The bike course was as simple as it can be. It consisted of 2.5 laps. The course was almost as flat as it can be with some slight inclines and declines. The competitors started to overtake me with a much higher speed. Then I did make one mistake. I didn’t count what position I was in. But in reality it wasn’t “need to have”-information, it was “nice to have”-information as I should just  focus on myself and push as hard as I could. I didn’t count the seconds I was behind. Competitors had made their way onto the bike course and it was increasingly difficult to see who was from my wave.

With 1 lap to go two guys passed me, I looked at them and of course they put on their poker face looking like there were going for an easy ride when they passed me. Back on with the “cry face” after they passed me. With around 1km to go I tried to push as hard as I could going out on to the run if I didn’t make any mistakes in T2.

Azu DuathlonT2

Fast run into transition and placed my bike. Found the spot and did the T2 in the correct order. Rack bike - running shoes on - bike helmet off - and number belt on while running.

Run2
I went out hard during the first part of the run as I always do. You just have to accept that running doesn’t feel good and easy during the first part and at some point it’ll loosen up and you’ll feel good.  I loosened up after 1-1.5km and found a consistent pace.  

Azu Duathlon 6

I crossed the finish line in 12th place in my age group and I went straight to the competitors and congratulated them. I waited for the others and congratulated them as well on their performances. After that I went to the shade and lay down for about 20mins.

A huge thank you to my sponsors that make this trip possible

@songo.info

@BiogenZA

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@Sziols (eyewear) 

Azu Duathlon 7