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2nd Place for Ritchie Nicholls at Challenge Walchsee!

2nd Place for Ritchie Nicholls at Challenge Walchsee!

This weekend sponsored athlete Ritchie Nicholls took part in the Challenge Walchee half-Ironman triathlon in Austria. Here is how he got on...

Challenge Walchsee was my first race in a couple of months, a half-distance event. I was not sure on my form going into the race as my training had changed, so it was a race to gain feedback on before getting back to training and keep building for challenge Bahrain in December.

I drove from St Moritz to Walchsee on the Friday before the race, had an easy relaxed day on Saturday and was feeling good on the morning of the race. It was very well organised and I even walked down the race start in my wetsuit 20 minutes before the start.

I struggled at the start of the swim and I lost the front group of guys. Once I got going I had a reasonable swim but couldn't catch them up. I had a good quick transition then biked hard for the first 10km. A group formed which I cycled in (12m apart - it's a non-drafting event) but we were loosing a lot of time to the guys up the front so I picked up the tempo throughout the race. The heavens open around the half way point on the bike but I'm used to this after training for the last couple of months in St Moritz.

I came off the bike 8 minutes down which was a bit too far down but I put my head down and ran at a good tempo, picking off the 4th and 3rd place in the second and third of the four laps. I thought this would be the best position I could hope for after coming off the bike so far down but with less than 1km to go I spotted the 2nd place just ahead, so I surged to catch up with around 400m to go, started sprinting and luckily I managed to get a gap quickly to secure 2nd place.

I'm now back to training, getting ready for my next race this weekend which is a hilly half distance race in Gerardmer France.

Well done to Ritchie on his 2nd place finish and good luck for Gerardmer. We'll keep you posted with his updates!

4 September 2014