There’s always something special about those races you do each and every year you can. They hold a special place in your heart. It’s those races you develop massive FOMO at the heretical thought of missing it. Regardless your reasons for making the start each year, analysing the results always provide some interesting insight.
The Mauritius Ocean Classic is just one of a couple anniversary races for me. It’s got all the elements: unpredictable race conditions, midwinter island getaway, cream-of-the-crop international lineup, warm oceans, lots of racing and lots of pampering. It’s practically a 6 day stage race with zero admin (well, almost).
2011 Sporty’s Dash 16km race saw me float in at 1h34min, 29.5 minutes behind first place. The 2012 edition had me coming home at just under 17.5 minutes off the podium (not that I’m gunning the podium I was a little more broken in 2011 on account of the heat. 2012 a little less so, but still suffered some heat exhaustion. In all, a welcome improvement.
The main race back in 2011 was pretty tough for me. 35 minutes, and no less after Dawid cruised to victory, I managed to cross the line feeling a little worse for wear. Thankfully the race had been shortened that day I guess. 2012, on the other hand, was on the other end of that experience. The conditions were hotter with less wind but the result and finishing face much prettier. Only 21.5 minutes off the pace and I paddled (with a bit more oomph) across the finish. A nice jump forwards.
In training terms, the investment pays dividends. Of course, half the fun is the actual training. The journey is always a lot more exciting and rewarding than just the result. The result is just the marshmallow in the hot chocolate. I mean, if you don’t enjoy putting in the miles- then what on earth are you actually doing with your time?
And of course, there’s always the people who help you get there and make it all possible. Without them, the achievements are just not possible. In all ways, we stand on the shoulders of giants in everything we do.