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Hyde Park beckoned Andover's Natalie
5:02pm Monday 7th October 2013 in Other Sport
Andover athlete Natalie Thomas recently competed in Hyde Park in the World Age Group Aquathlon and Sprint Triathlon Championships.
It was a tough few days with only one day of recovery between the two races with briefings, team photos and bike racking.
The Aquathlon was a 1000m swim in the Serpentine followed by a 5km run and Natalie did not have a brilliant start with 130 people squashed along the pontoon and was stuck with people swimming all over her and couldn’t get any clear water for the first 500m.
“This was a cross between a boxing ring and washing machine but I exited near the front of the field and felt a bit tired on the first of the two run laps.” Despite that she crossed in sixth place in her age group.
After a day of relaxing and preparing for the Sprint Triathlon (750m swim/20km bike/5km run) Natalie felt excited and prepared for what to expect in the swim with a goal of a top 20 finish.
With a good position on the pontoon she enjoyed a clear swim exiting fourth and following a long run into transition she was soon out and onto the bike course which was certainly a challenge in the wet conditions.
“Many came off their bikes on the tight corners and I felt my bike slide a couple of times but stayed on and safely completed the course” she added although she had dropped quite a few places in her weakest discipline.
She had to work hard to produce a brilliant run overtaking many who had passed her on the bike and with a strong finish came over the line in tenth place with a run time 27 seconds quicker than she ran in the Aquathlon.
“Overall it was a fantastic end to a brilliant first year in triathlon” she said “and I’m looking forward to getting a hard winter of training in and racing even better next year.”