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Saturday, 2 May 2015

Alcobendas ETU Champs by Lewis Eccleston

Alcobendas race reportIn the lead up to this race I had done a couple of Time Trials and a Duathlon, and had shown good form, but sometimes no matter what you do, it all comes down to the day itself.On the days leading up to the race, the weather had been sunny and 20 degrees plus. It was typical, that race day was forecast for heavy rain, wind and lightening and it did exactly that (just like riding at home).

Having done a reccie of the bike and the run course it was exactly what I didn’t need, there were 12 roundabouts on 1 lap of the bike, and you were either going up or down, there wasn’t a single flat on the course.A couple of days before the race I was very nervous but I stayed focused and couldn’t stop going through the course over in my head and how I thought the race would unfold, not sure if this was a good thing or a bad thing.30 minutes before the race I found a quiet street to do my warm up and felt very good and ready for the race.I knew that the first run was going to set off very fast, so I just ran it at my own pace and found myself in about 5th or 6th position after the first lap, and continued on to pick people off on the second lap and came into T1 in 3rd position.
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Going out onto the bike it was me and 2 other Brits in the lead, the support was amazing off everyone, I soon caught up with the leader and was leading the race on the bike, this was a massive buzz for me as I had never experienced anything like it at this level of racing.

Riding down the hill towards transition, there were easily over hundred people, all stood watching, the support from the British fans was unreal as I had about 30-60 seconds lead this was soon to become a lot less !!!!As it had not really stopped raining all morning the roads were wet and holding water so I approached every roundabout and turn around point with caution. Just after I had passed all the supporters, and coming up to the turn around point I started to slow down and my bike just slid out and I landed on my hip and skidded across the floor on my back, I managed to hold my bike in the air to avoid damage, amazingly there is only a little scuff on the seat Smiling face with open mouth and cold sweat I got up straight away and was being shouted at “take your time you have loads of time just relax” so I jumped onto my bike, my seat was pointing up in the air and I first thought this was the end of my race, I was bouncing on my seat and punching it trying to get it back down, luckily it went down a little bit, I had to ride the last lap with the point of an adimo saddle sticking up my arse (NOT PLEASANT) ! Whilst continuing riding I was trying to check the bike over to see if there was any more damage, I felt fine, unknown to me I had quite bad road rash all over, by this point I was just high on adrenalin and just so focused on getting back into T2 safely.
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Coming into T2 I was over taken 50 meters from the dismount line and was now in second place. With a quick transition I was out onto the 2nd run, But I had to stop about 50 meters in just to stretch my calfs as I had cramp and just couldn’t run it off. I soon took the lead again and was back in first place, but was quite quickly over taken by a Spanish guy, I hung onto his feet for as long as I could, but the elastic slowly stretched, I gave everything I possibly could but just couldn’t stay with him.

I was extremely proud to be running towards the finish line representing my country in second place, and first Brit in front of all those supporting. If it wasn’t for the crash I believe I would have come first overall as I was only beaten by 14 seconds.
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