Both Mon Liston and Shri Vasudeva took off to Korea mid last week unsure of what lay ahead and both being told by their coach "your body is more ready than your head knows, so let it do its job".
Both girls are without a doubt some of the hardest working in the squad. Age group racing isn't easy with everything else that goes on that is far more important than triathloning, they both juggle this with great commitment.
Mon was clinical as usual in racing to her plan set out and exited the water just on 1 hr and 1st in her age group. She managed herself well on the bike and backed herself even though not feeling great on account of dinner the night before not agreeing. She stepped off the bike in 2nd and 6 min down from the lead. Her run was superb, comfortably taking back the lead by half way and going on to put down a winning margin of 16 min and 4th female overall after running a 3 hr 46 min marathon and booking her spot to Kona.
Kiddo is my longest standing athlete almost starting with me from day dot, for that she probably needs an award for putting up with me that long. But above the pb's, podiums and now Kona spot, was that many times she had circumstances that one could easily justify walking away saying 'this ain't for me', but instead she worked harder and you reap what you sow. Well done Kiddo.
Shri had plans of heading to Gold Coast ITU worlds this year and after a mechanical at the Canberra qualification race reassessed and asked if she could have another go at the long distance. Kona is Shri's overarching goal and we agreed that we would target another Ironman to learn how to race the distance before then aiming to qualify. Korea was that practice race and much has been learnt.
Shri had done a ton of work in the water to bring her swim up to even half as good as her strong ride and run. Taking 10 min off her first Ironman swim time, and this time in fresh water, had her out of the water 2nd in her age group. It wasn't long before Shri moved up into the lead on the bike where she remained for most of the day.
The learning was to come on the run and the fine line of getting enough drink in to keep the body going. Like the tough girl she is Shri kept on grinding all the way to the finish and claimed 2nd place in her age group and 7th female overall. For this to be the case in only her 2nd Ironman, once the kinks have been sorted with the fluid intake she will be lining up to put the lessons into practice and I have no doubt we will see her on the big island sooner rather than later.
This week we head to the Gold Coast for the ITU Sprint and Standard distance World Championships. All the very best to Samantha Janssen and Sarah Hardy who are racing.