My 3 week European adventure is now over. It would have been nice to finish it off with a good result but that wasn’t the case this past weekend in Kitzbuhel. I came into the race motivated and excited. It was my first time racing in Austria and I wanted to improve on my 10th place finish in Tiszaujvaros the week before.
The swim was very rough. I’m used to getting beat up a bit on the turn buoys but I was grabbed and pulled back by other athletes at least three times before I even got to the first turn. It was very frustrating! The second loop wasn’t too bad but I was happy to exit the water. I got through transition pretty quickly and headed out on the bike. The course was really cool; narrow roads with a short climb and a long, technical descent on each lap. My group chased hard for the first 4 laps of 8 to catch the front group. By the start of the 5th lap both groups had merged together and there was one large lead pack for the remainder of the ride. I wanted to put myself in the best position possible coming off the bike so I navigated my way to the front of the group as we came into transition. I was able to get out well in about 4th place, right where I wanted to be, but within 500 meters I could feel myself starting to go backwards. I think the 3 weeks of racing and traveling finally caught up with me as I had absolutely nothing left in my legs. I just simply couldn’t go anymore, the tank was empty!
In hindsight, it probably would have been best for me to have done only 2 of the 3 races but I have no regrets. I gained a lot of valuable race experience over the past 3 weeks with a couple solid finishes and some more world cup points. I am now ranked 21st in the world and I will look to improve on that in the final 3 World Cup races of the year.