Rotovegas 3D Multisport festival
This is a crazy event, pretty damn short for your standard multisport race, but hey there are no regulations on distance in this game – actually I’d love to see someone have a crack at defining this sport… Dougal Allan mentioned on his blog here about loving the amateurism of multisport, I whole-heartedly agree with him!
The 3D festival is based, obviously, in Rotorua. Many options for different races but I opted for 50km premier Multisport race, which also was supposedly the Multisport Australasian Champs. A 9km kayak on Lake Tikitapu (two laps), 30kms of Mountain biking through the internationally renowned MTB trails in the Whakarewarewa forest, then 11km of running in the same forest (2X 5.5km loop).
One of the few races where you can have spectators due to the loops in the kayak and run!
A 10.45am start was nice, meant we didn’t have to get up so early. The start line was very crowded, anxious how such a compact group of kayakers would play out, I imagined lots of paddles and boats clashing… wasn’t too bad actually, just make sure you have good acceleration to escape the mess quick!. I wasted the precious first 2 seconds of the start gun pushing the ‘start’ button on my Garmin. 2secs is not much but it is crucial not to miss out on any of the front groups to work together with. Eventually the field spread and I was in the 3rd pack making slow gains on the 2nd. Myself and a Surf ski paddler worked hard together for the 2nd lap.
Had a terrible transition, blood was pumping so hard through my hands and arms from the paddle that I had difficulty getting pack and helmet straps clipped up.
Onto the MTB, it was really hard to warm up, legs weren’t cooperating much. But I was still catching some riders so couldn’t have been too bad. Sam Clark had advised me the day before not to go too hard on the first gravel section, I took his word for it and was cautious. However once the single track began about 7kms in I let loose and didn’t hold back.
I don’t think I’ve ever ridden single track so fast before. Somehow I was nailing the technical better than I have normally and gained great time here, also catching a few individual competitors. Nutrition was better than ever too. Having water and my new favourite sports drink – Rline (no they don’t sponsor me) is the way to go. Everything felt good, I just didn’t have the power to have a good speed on the open gravel roads, that’s where I think I lost most of my time. The last uphill a team MTB gun on a hard tail bike caught me, then on the final downhill his hard tail couldn’t hold the same pace as my Anthem, however he wouldn’t let me pass, holding me me up all the way to the trail end.
A nice quick transition to the run, all I had to do was change shoes and chuck away the helmet.
I immediately brought my pace up hard and high. I really wanted to smash the run, I kind of expected to since running is my strength. But surprise, surprise like every other multisport race, I just couldn’t get the legs to perform. There is a hill on the course about 130m climb. I struggled to get up it! Had to walk some parts. The second lap was better, but still the hill was a struggle more than I’d expect considering recent trainings and races prior. A teams runner passed me with about 3kms to finish. He had a good speed and I used him to pace me to the end, it hurt!
I finished 7th overall in 3hours 1min 30secs. 1st in the under 23’s but there were only two of us in it anyway. A sprint event by all means, just ask any one of the top guys and gals, they’ll say the same thing. Not what most of their body’s muscles are used to doing, nor mine. She was always going to be a lung burner racing at high intensity for 3hours, every muscle in the body got a decent work out.
Great chance to meet and greet with pro’s too!
On a side note: Xterra trail run series in Auckland going well, so far have taken the win for the first two races of the series -Shakespeare park and Riverhead in the ‘Superlong’ distance- 4 more to go!