Our athletes in shape and ready to roll in Mexico!Unfortunately Vadim gets sick shortly after arrival and is having fever 1day before the race. A no go for him to race Ironman today! Luckily Vadim already qualified for Kona 2022 earlier.In the female race Cai gets to the start with confidence and race experience after Cozumel 2021. A lot of strong AG women racing this race, one of the last race to already qualify for Kona 22 this year. Cai has a good swim and gets out of the water in 11th position before she powers herself to the front of the race on the bike. Keeping herself in 4th to 5th position throughout the whole bikesection. During the marathon Cai lost a few place and was sure not running her fastest marathon today but maintained well and finishes 11th her AG!In the male race both Thibaud and Sam get out of the water very well, thibaud in 7th AG position, Sam already 14th.
Thibaud was pacing well and after 1/3 he found himself aroun 12th AG position, pacing perfectly. Unfortunately he had a flat tyre a few kilometers later. With a 10’loss of time and changing tyres he could restart his race in 50th position. Sam from his side had a very strong ride, and moved up to 3rd place after 40K, to already being in the lead after 55K. His steady bike effort of +/-255NP on this flat course made him make a significant gap with his nearest opponents in his AG and also move up strongly in GC. Both athletes had a good run in their legs, with a good strategy on the bike and enough nutrition in the body they started steady. Sam came out of T2 @ 4’10-4’15/km, which of course is very fast in Ironman and let drop the pace a bit towards 4’20-4’30/km!
This made him finish his marathon in 3h08′ and taking victory in his AG! A great feeling after 2years away from IM! With a 8h26′ he comes close to his fastest race (IM Texas 2018) and gets sub 8h30 again!
Thibaud from his side was keen on approaching towards the 9h mark, after his flat tyre things could get difficult to approach this. But a perfectly balanced run in which he ran between 4’30 and 4’35/km he managed a 3h10′ marathon. Which for thibaud is a huge step in Full distance racing and not cracking down! He had to push in the end, but leaves Cozumel with a 8h55′ Ironman and will be found in Kona ’22 upcoming season!
Our full distance athletes have had a great summer so far! With multiple Kona qualifications and several AG top 10 results in the Ironman races we were spot on in 99% of the races. Today Belgium had its only full Irondistance Ironlakes, Location: Froidchappelle! A very hilly full distance with quite some elevation on the bike and run course. A good end of summer sun, 22°C… and a light breeze excellent racing conditions! Jesse M(assez), Nesten and Hans were our athletes at the office!
In Italy, Ironman Emilia-Romagna was on. For Christophe and Roel, a faster racecourse in a nice environment.
In Ironlakes also 70.3 racing was on for our athletes!
Hans had his 2019 title to defend in Ironlakes, and knew he had to be at his best to be able to do a strong effort again on this tough racecourse!
Our athletes had good swims and could start cycling at their place, only Jesse M took some extra meters and ended up with almost 4K!
Also in Italy Christophe got out of the water in 1h06, Roel in 1h25. The beginning of a day to proove he’s capable of becoming an Ironman.
Ironlakes is an honest and tough race course. Athletes get in their positions they earn to be in very quickly. Hans got himself into the top 5 of the field very quickly after the swim. Jesse M and Nesten were very close behind each other on the bike and rode a consistent similar pace throughout the bike effort. Further on in the race it was very clear that 3man were very competitive to each other. Van de Plas, Didier and Hans. Hans seemed to be the best man on the bike of these 3, with 1900D+ in the course Hans realized a time sub 4h30′ for the bike! During this bike effort he maintained a consistent 290-300NP, with only 10watts of difference between the first and last 90K. A very steady effort and his HR in the right zone lead him to his running shoes with enough freshness for a strong run.
Jesse M and Nesten both moved up strongly on the bike and could put down their bikes in +/- position 30!
In Italy Christophe paced himself forward in his strongest discipline and could step of his bike in 12th position in Emilia-Romagna! At that point it was clear that he was going to put down his fastest IM ever.
Pacing correctly on the bike is important for being able to run fast off the bike and putting down a strong result at the finishline. No Ironman has been won in T2. But of course a strong bike effort at the right pacing brings you in chase of wins. Hans could step off the bike 2nd and immediately got in the right pace. Unfortunately for him both the winner and number 3 did a very strong run with 2h54 and 2h57 on the marathon. This put Hans in 3rd position past halfway on the run course, which he could maintain thanks to a steady and well paced run and finishing in 8h50′! What a strong time, and a well deserved 3rd place overall, besides this Hans also wins the masters race of course! Let’s not forget that. Behind him Jesse M was having another very strong off bike run and was able to move up from 28th position at the beginning of the run to 14th overall position at the finishline! Nesten +-/ maintained his position after the bike and puts down a good run and takes 40th overall! He killed his Ironman PB after a much better and consistent preparation on a very tough course!
In Italy our athletes realized personal bests and mental and physical limits were put further and further! Christophe started slightly too fast during the marathon but could get in his paces after 20K into the run course, finishing in 10h14′!
Roel from his side was keen on getting to the finishline, coming from very very far as an athlete he prooves that balls go hand in hand with glory! He can proudly claim that he’s an Ironman!
In Ironlakes also the 70.3 distance was held! 800participants in this Half Irondistance and some of our athletes were ready to kill it! Bart had an excellent day, 4weeks after his fast Ironman in Kopenhagen and takes 5th in his AG today after running off the bike very fast!
Last but not least, the way our athletes race is fast and with a lot wins in cycling and triathlon so far. But all of this is done with a smile and positive mind. This finish of Steven in Ironlakes demonstrates it all!
Our riders are peaking to the late autumn races at this moment, with several nice races coming and a relatively shorter season behind us peaking spot on is also a tiny bit more predictable. Periodisation is less depending on racing fatigue. All output of fatigue comes significantly more from trainingperiods.
Since the beginning of the season in June our riders are racing for the podium and wins week after week. With already several wins in Elite/U23 races and Amateur/masters race as a result. Our elite/u23 riders are also performing very high level in Belgian cups, interclubs and races abroad.
Today 2 of our riders who have a peaking period win their races! Not a concidence, an output of the input!
Svenne taking the win in the master category in Kärnten, Austria and taking 15th (all categories). Taking back 2′ in GC on the current leader, makes him 2nd with 2′ behind!
In Neerijse Lars (U23) started in this elite/u23 race near his home, for him a home-event. With his father organizing the race. Coming back from the UCI2.2U race Flanders Tomorrow Tour and heading later this week to Tour de Moselle (France) this race fell a bit ‘unlucky’. But considering FTT and today’s race as a 4day stage race and peaking towards Flanders Tomorrow Tour – Tour de Moselle – Liège Bastogne Liège(U23) and Arden challenge. We already saw with a good taper-off to the stage races that Lars could grow into these races and mostly has good final stages. Today he confirmed this.
Lars is a rider you can work with quite easily. Executing training as asked, and finding solutions to train in changing conditions. In winter, in Covid periods, in racing periods. Looking further ahead than week by week. That’s the mindset you need as a rider/athlete, at least on the long run.
Consistency in training and spicing up training periodized leads to a good season and individual races. In the end it leads to winning!
After Ironman (70.3) races in Lake Placid, Maastricht, Frankfurt, Kopenhagen and Vichy now Hamburg and Duisburg (both in Germany) were planned!!
With astonishing results in the previous races we knew the vibes are there!
In Ironman Hamburg Nathan takes part in his first Ironman, Hans DK and also Robin (also his first Ironman) joined him at the starting line!
Hans DK had an injury in the months before the race but could manage training very well in the weeks leading up to the race!
After a very good swim, excellent bike effort in 5h he was ready to run a sub 10h-10h30 Ironman. Unfortunately cold (after a day in the rain) hit him and stomach issues obligated him to step out of the race after 32K. A pity, and hopefully he can get himself back on his feet in the next few days. But this also is sports of course.
Robin from his side had an steady swim – bike – run performance, and his main objective before the race was to finish this race well and with a good feeling! And he could, after 11h43′ he finishes his first Ironman in Germany!
Nathan from his side also wanted in first place do the Ironman with a good feeling, pacing correctly and being capable to keep the engine running…on the run! That’s also how we paced the race. A steady to progressive race was planned. At the end, prizes are won at the finishline!
With a 1h04 swim, followed by a bike effort in 4h40′ he took his runningshoes in 4th position in his AG! In this strong AG25-29 in front of him we found 3 other strong athletes who could stay ahead of him untill the end! But behind them it’s Nathan who moves up strongly in the overall field and finishes not only 4th in his AG, but also 19th overall!
His running time: 3h01′ – Global time 8h54′
As this coach loves statistics and lists, we can say he’s the 10th of our athletes swim-bike-running his Ironman sub 9h! A magical border!
3rd time Nathan astonishes me this season.
The first time was during his running test, 2nd time during his bike test, today in race modus. When a puzzle falls together….
With Ironman cutting down the number of slots in the qualifying races for 2022 in Europe to 26 slots…even a 8h58′ and 4th place isn’t enough for a slot!
Compared to the arbitrariness in Kopenhagen last week, that’s a very sad approach.
Next week more Ironman racing in Switzerland and one of Europe’s classics Challenge Roth (Germany) are on!
Another nice surprise of one of our athletes in Viersel! Emelie takes the win in her first 1/4 triathlon and can spray the champagne!
Another duathlete stepping who can combine both disciplines!In the 1/3 triathlon it’s Jan Meysmans who raced his first triathlon again after years! And how! With a lack of swimming kilometers he leaves T1 in 92th position and pushes himself slowly but surely forward during this race on the bike!
Once in T2 his favourite gear (2runningshoes) was waiting for him! With a fast 7th running time he runs himself to 23rd place and is ready for the duathlons coming later this season!
In Deinze another Belgian triathlon was held! On the sprintdistance Ferre does his 2nd race so far and picks up another good feeling and experience!
In the 111 triathlon in Deinze our triathlete becoming duathlete Lesly does his final preprace towards the World Championships Duathlon in Zofingen, Switzerland! Another duathlete becoming triathlete is Yves! Soon in the AG50 category, but never to o(d)(l)d to learn! A good swim, using his strength on the bike and a fast run off the bike in 38′! Local hero from Deinze Arno launched himself in his 2nd triathlon, and with success! A good performance and getting endurance in his body!
A loaded weekend for our athletes, with finally the European Ironman races kicking off! After last week’s race in Frankfurt with splendid results for Steven, Jeffrey and Niels the confidence among our athletes was high. I was confident about our athletes throughout the last 1,5year. Training is key, race output is a small % of the essence for endurance athletes. If they are cyclists, triathletes, runners, swimmers…training is key. Balanced training is key.
Today Ironman Vichy for Tony, Kurt, Jurgen and Tim! Ironman Denmark for Bart and Wi(lle)m (Danish nationality for 1day).
A good swimming start for all of our athletes. With swimming times of 57′, 59′, 1h03, 1h05, 1h06 and 1h24′ our athletes were in front of the race quite soon. Tim and Tony rode similar paces on the bike and moved up strongly in their age group, picking up 2nd and 3rd position at the end of the bike course!
Jurgen made and makes huge steps as an athlete, likewise Tony and Tim not racing many races but well planned throughout the season in prep towards the A-races. This pays off very well and Jurgen enters the top 15 in his AG during this tough bike course. Hilly and a bit technical, 2combinations our strong bikers like a lot.
Kurt from his side paces wisely on the hills and moves up after his swim effort!
In Kopenhagen Bart takes back Wim in the beginning of the bike and both athletes could start managing their own race. Both athletes had several experiences in overloading during the bike course. This time plans were very clear, pace correctly and wait to push until the very final of the run.
Tony and Tim were found in 1st and 2nd position in their AG very soon on the run course! Tony has been running several IM runs between 3h05 an 3h15. Today, after a very tough course all was possible. Knowing he ran in 2nd position gave wings to him, and also Tim became the runner he wanted to be! With the distances moving up Tony was making a bigger gap on most athletes, but was getting closely followed by a French athlete, who ran a 2h51′ in Vichy! At the finishline Tony is the final winner with a 9″ advantage!
Excellent job to be on top of the podium for the first time in an Ironman! His 3 Ironman world championships qualification! Tony is an athlete not to underestimate. His resume is getting quite big and deserves big respect being an amateur athlete! But hey, then again…next race everybody is equal again at the startingline.
Tim on the other hand runs a 3h24′ marathon and takes 5th in this AG! A very consistent race and waiting for a possible Slot for the Ironman world championships!
With Javier, Vadim, Steven, Tony and maybe Tim/Jeffrey our athletes are astonishing race after race! These athletes head to Kona already. This is very nice to see, because we also notice a serious development of our mature and younger athletes! And why wouldn’t there be even more athletes getting close to joining the World championships!
Another athlete that amazes himself in Vichy is Jurgen! With a 3h30 run off the bike he takes 13th in his AG after 10h19′ of racing! Kurt finishes a bit later, and finishes his toughest Ironmanrace so far, satisfaction was higher than the suffering. Good job!
In Kopenhagen the athletes have a slightly faster bike course and Bart was aiming for his fastest IM race ever! He realized this after a perfectly paced race, never going outside the planned zones and finishing in 10h36′. He had just enough time to recover a bit and see Wim crossing the finishline after 11h35′!
Bart and Wim having excellent racing conditions in Kopenhagen, Denmark. If you pace correctly, a smile is always possible.
In Belgium the national championships Half distance triathlon were held in Menen! A very windy race in which hard bikers could unleash their legs!
Dimi, Alexander, Christophe, Georg, Michael, Emiel, Frederick and Raymond raced in this national championship! All 5 strong bikers and putting down a result to be happy about! Christophe heading to Ironman Italy in September, Raymond heading to Ironman Mallorca in October!
Half triathlon national champs in Menen today! An excellent race for hard bikers or lead up race to autumn Ironman races!
In cycling our riders were heading to the national Elite championships today! Lars VC tried to join the breakaway but missed it with a little bit of uncertainty because of the wet roads, Dries from his side felt great and missed the breakaway because of the movement in the peloton. In chase he tried to pick up this breakaway and placed himself 12th in the pelotonsprint, finishing 23rd.
In France Agglo Tour (Elite Nationale) was held this weekend, strong race of Lars yesterday already. This morning a 8,3km hilly TT was good for a 373NP performance – 68kg. This put him in a good position for a strong GC with a strong performance in the queen stage later today! And so he did, finishing in the 1st group he moved up to 18th in GC in this high level race! Up next for Lars are Pro stage races Flanders Tomorrow Tour (Belgium) and Tour de Moselle (France)!
European Ironman championships today in Frankfurt, Germany! With 3 athletes racing in Germany a very nice race to follow! Ambitions were set on doing a ‘best I can’ race and pace the race well…
With 3 strong swims: Steven 1h00 (AG40), Jeffrey 1h03(AG 25) and Niels 1h06′ (AG30) our athletes could enter T1 within the better range of their age groups.
In the beginning of the bike our athletes moved up easily and it was Steven who entered top 10 already early in the bike course, Jeffrey also followed his pacing-plan perfectly and was moving up places strongly in the 2nd half of the race!
With a 256NP in the first 90K and 255NP in the 2nd half he shows that being confident in pacing and keeping the head cool works. Niels from his side entered his first ever Ironman and kept pacing and nutrition where it had to be.
With a good base in swimming, cycling and running you can race a consistent Ironman. Consider triathlon as 1 sport and you will perform better in the end. Steven is a consistent athlete in swim, bike and run. We knew that with a good pacing his running would be a strength! And so he did, with a strong 3h11′ in his marathon he did not only keep his place in the top5 of his AG but moved up towards 3rd place and takes bronze in this continental championship! A dream coming true!
Jeffrey from his side used to be less consistent in the run. This year he made a huge step in running off the bike. He already prooved in his 70.3races earlier this season…but in an IM there always is 42k to run. His good pacing on the bike resulted in good running legs, his best running legs. Maintaining 5’00/km, after a slightly too fast start, and keeping the HR at the right beat he realised a step forward in the AG classification and at km31 he’s registered 5th. The last 10k of the race he felt acceleration wasn’t in his legs anymore but maintained his position to finish 7th!
But not also our athletes in front of the game were on wings, also our Ironman rookie Niels did an excellent job and with patience he finished in 11h21′, within the first half of the field.
Not only Ironman racing for our athletes this weekend!
Stijn is in full prep towards the national championships mountain running and takes 3rd place in Trail des Fantômes!
Challenge Brabant-Wallon, half marathon for legendary Jan Meysmans, this hilly half marathon was an excellent preprace in his prep to several (tri)duathlons at the end of this season and towards 2022. Jan takes 5th in 3’45/km! Also Veerle races her half marathon in prep towards her first marathon and never felt so good on this distance, good signs!
In Halle, the annual duathlon was held today. A very strong level at the starting the line in both the male and female race! Emelie and Debbie having a good race on this tough course. Emelie takes 4th, Debbie 7th!
In the male race it’s Wim DC who finishes first of our athletes and immediately takes the win in the masters race! A very strong season of Wim so far. Not racing so many, but always there when he has to be! Robby finishes 2 places behind Wim and is keen on performing strongly in the French Mountains in a few weeks. Geoffrey from his side races this level for the first time, an eye-opener and learning a lot a few places behind Wim and Robby!
Elite/U23 cycling in Lendelede today, elite cycling in Belgium has a very high level and winning races is not easy at all! But today another day came true and Lars VC wins his first elite race in his career after an already splendid season! Above all he finishes…solo!
Our athletes are having another splendid season, with many wins in cycling, triathlon and running! Different sports, different approaches, same vibes, same motivation!
Our cyclists have very filled days nowadays! With last week’s Bioracer Wallonia tour and Anthony taking 2nd place in stage2 we already had quite some confidence in the performance output of our riders!
This week our elite/U23 riders could start in Tour de Namur (UCI2.12), Dries was keen on battling day by day and wanted to be in front of the race and picking up shape towards the races coming. He realized a very nice tour and ended up in breakaways every day! To recover from this, shape and consistency must be TOP. And it is! Losing 1’30 in stage1, after being caught back after a breakaway, his GC seemed to be gone. But he still realized 37th position in GC! With Lars from his side we focussed on a good GC and trying to follow and beat the best riders in the final of the races. And that worked. In stage 1 he battled for a top10 and finished 13th, a strong TT (21st) and on the fifth and last day a 7th place between several pro riders. He gets rewarded for his focus, perseverance and consistency with an 18th place in GC!
Congratz to both riders, of which we’ve only seen a small percentage. Grow easy, but grow strong! Now recovery, and next stage races are coming soon with Agglo Tour (France), Tour de Moselle (UCI2.2 France), Arden Challenge (Belgium)
These 2 young riders have good examples among our athletes when it comes down to perseverance and motivation!
Today Ironman70.3 Estonia was held and our 60+ athlete Kris was having quite some ambitions leading up this event. A long time ago he could race Ironman. But today it was his day. With a good swim he came out of the water with eyes on a podium and he picked up speed on the bike very soon! A mechanical problem costed him almost his race, but the Shimano repair boys saved his race and reduced this problem to a 2’loss. So chasing again was what he had to do and he dropped his bike in T2 3rd. During the run Kris came very close to number 2 who ‘in the end’ finished 15″ ahead. But bronze is big reward and well earned for him!
Our 2nd ‘maestro’ of course is Svenne, today Elite3 and masters national championships cycling. With Svenne and Anthony we had 2 man in the race who could play a role for the podium. 2men in the shape of their life (again :-)).
With a tough course, hilly and cobbles the best riders would automatically distinguish theirselves!
Unfortunately Anthony his Di2 shifted to ‘crash modus’ halfway the course on the cobbles. So race over.
Svenne from his side had fire in his legs and kept himself in front of the race to ride a very strong final and sprint for 2nd position, taking 3rd and his first bronze medal in the nationals! Also nice to see Maarten picking up experience in these champs and learn a lot towards upcoming races!
Onwards to next week(s), there’s a small feeling of strong results coming!
With a super strong field of pro athletes at thé starting line.
Our athlètes Steven and Hans looking forward to this race since winter. One of the thoughest races, conquering thé Alps summits.Both athletes had a good swim and kept touch with their opponents and eachother.
Once on the bike, Hans Transformed again in La Machine and did an excellent job chasing thé pro field.
Halfway thé bikecourse he Found himself in front of thé race and only surrounded with professional athletes such as Strijk, Vistica, Rundstadler,…
Also Steven was working hard and moved up towards top 7in his AG. Unfortunately Steven had some problems on thé bike just before thé climb of Alpe d’Huez which forced him in cramps. Hans flew his 78kg up on thé mountain and puts the 11th climbing time down!
With an excellent run can maintain his place among thé pros and finishes 22nd overall, and Winner in his AG! Steven survives the cramps, perseveres and shows the true sportsmenship finishing thé race.
The first BIG racing weekend of 2021, finally! The first weekend also our athletes were aiming high to Full and 70.3 distance races! Yesterday in The Netherlands Rens gave the good example by taking 17th overall in his very first Ironmandistance! Of course these performances of our athletes motivates eachother and gives confidence in entering races!
Today Champ’Man, Epernay – France was held! A tough 70.3 distance with 1200D+ during the bikecourse and a hilly run to finish! Hans won this race in 2018, but this year opponents were even harder. With Timothy Van Houtem as big favourite Winner Challenge Madrid and (semi?) – Pro athlete – https://protriathletes.org/athlete/timothy-van-houtem and on hilly courses definitely one of Belgium’s fastest guys. But also Thy Do Duy Thien, another Belgian. A very strong athlete that amazes every year, with wins in Belman 70.3, Damme 70.3 and multiple AG podia and wins in Ironman races. And of course the mass of French athletes, who are never to underestimate! And of course Hans and Lesly who are keen on their frist 70.3 race of the season!
A good swim of both of our athletes kept them where they had to be, Hans coming out of the water together with Van Houtem and immediately in chase of the front group. For a long time Van Houtem kept up the pace with Hans, in the steeper sections VH seemed to be a bit stronger. While on the ‘rolling’ hills Hans felt a bit stronger. At a certain point Hans made a gap and went for a solo chase on leader Do Duy Thien. Meanwhile Lesly moved up and could begin at his runcourse in search of top 20!
But one of the main focusses we put in the head of our athletes is that running off the bike determines the outcome of the race! Prizes are won at the finishline, not in transition areas! Both Lesly and Hans ran off the bike very hard! For Hans the mission now was to keep in front of Van Houtem as long as possible, for Lesly to pick up as many athletes as he could! And the did! Hans came even very close to Do Duy and finishes 30″ behind him on 2nd place! Van Houtem takes 3rd! A very nice podium in his first A-race of the season!
Lesly from his side moved up strongly and settled down as 16th in his first race of the season!
A bit more south in the ‘Monts de Guéret’ Tim also had a very race to approach, 70.3 Half Triman de Monts de Guéret. One of the tougher French 70.3 races! Tim is a strong swimmer and on the long distance, probably of Belgium’s potential best AG swimmers. With only 1 session in the last 4 weeks and no swimming for months (living in France – pools closed) he makes a perfect entry coming out of the water…2nd!
On this hilly racecourse Tim tried not to blow up immediately and let go the leader quite soon. But after the race he regretted his choice a bit. Heavy rainfull made the course quite tricky and with an athlete and motor in front this always is a bit easier than behind the leader. Despite that he keeps his place and gets in a small group riding for the first places. During the run (most tricky point for Tim) he had a more difficult moment just after halfway but het kept strong and the energy to battle for 3rd place came…in which he succeeded! Excellent start also for Tim taking 3rd in his first 70.3 race of the season!
Most of our triathletes crossed the border in the North of France, where one of the nicest triathlon events in the region kept place: Chtriman Gravelines! A race in which our athletes could win already the full distance triathlon (Van den Buverie) and the LD duathlon (Meysmans)!
Today David http://www.neverbackdown.be, Jeroen and Jesse M were aiming for the full distance! With rain in the first hours of the race the bikestart was not a dream scenario! But after a good swim of our athletes (1h05′-1h06-1h17) their day started well, on the bike our athletes moved up! For Jesse M it meant step up to be battling for top 20 during the run, David could keep his pace and was racing very consistent throughout the race. Jeroen (1h17 swim) moved up to where he wanted to be and took back his place on the first page of the livestream.
Ironman of course ends with a marathon, and blowing up on the bike comes back in the face very soon! Pacing of our athletes was done very well with David finishing after 10h49′ and doing a very consistent race in swim – bike – run! Jeroen and Jesse M moved up strongly throughout the day, with Jeroen moving up from 199th after the swim to 36th overall and a 3h20′ marathon! Jesse M amazed himself with a very strong bike effort and run off the bike in 3h10′! Finishing his first Ironmandistance in 9h45′ and 15th overall place!
Jesse M finishing 15th overall in Chtriman – Gravelines
But Chtriman is more than the full distance Ironman, it’s also about 70.3 triathlon and Long distance duathlon!
Our duathletes were ready to battle, and they did!
After a fast run, Wim, Jan and Robby kept very close to eachother during the first run! Steven DG came closely behind! With a fast first 10K of these athletes between 3’37/km-4’05/km avg they started cycling close to eachother! Unfortunately Steven had a flat tyre after 5K on the bike…race not done, but 20′ loss to solve the problem and losing a top 5in his category.
In that same category Wim and Jan battled for the podium and places in front of the race! Wim made the gap with Robby and Jan on the bike, while halfway the bikecourse Robby could drop Jan. In the 2nd run all 3 athletes came close to eachother…Jan putting down the fastest 2nd run of these athletes and finishes 3rd in the masters race, 6th overall! Robby takes 3rd in his category (H24-40) and 5th overall while Wim takes 4th overall and 2nd in his category!
In the 70.3 race a lot of athletes at the starting line and for many athletes the first mass start after a year of rolling start and mostly no starts 🙂 Nathan freaked out and had to calm down himself, a pity because by this action he lost track of the front of the race! But he too revenge on the bike, and with a strong bike and a 1h20′ half marathon afterwards he got himself back in the front to finish 18th!
At that the very end of the race he could pass Steven DB, taking 21st overall and 2nd place in the Masters category! A very strong effort of this 40+ athlete, perhaps…Stronger than ever! 1spot behind it’s Jeffrey who does another big race in his 2nd 70.3 this season and finishes 22nd in 4h20′!
Very close to these athletes we had Dimi and Alex doing an excellent race…but both athletes had a penalty on the bike! 5′ of STOP and the places flew by! Despite that… their shape is what it is, Alexander puts down his fastest half marathon and Dimi moved up to 51st and probably lost 10 places during his stop. So good signs to the next races coming!
In between Dimi and Alexander we had Georg who did a progressive race and finishes off with a strong run, 18th in his AG!
Not so far behind Michael finishes in his first 70.3 triathon in a long time and can look back on a good preparation. With plenty of half and 1 full distance race coming this looks good!
Last but not least, Julie was our female participant in Gravelines! A tough start in her first 70.3 race with some steep hills in it…but also a race that succeeded as planned! Great job!
In Xterra France it was Dave who challenged himself in this tough offroad triathlon! And with success, finishing 24th in AG and looking back at a strong effort!
The first big weekend of the season was spot on! Looking forward now to more racing in the next few weeks with for example Ironman Lake Placid, USA and Triathlon XL Alpe d’Huez!
Caveman triathlon today! Strong field of athletes at the starting line for this 111 triathlon. For many athletes the season opener!
With especially in the AG40 and AG category some of our athletes keen on getting close to the podium! Unfortunately 1week ago AG 50 athlete Raymond crashed and as his legs were still looking like a ‘sandwich martino’ DNS for him! In GC both Tony and Hans could have ambitions for a top 10 result. A pretty tough course also in this tritathlon, with the ‘slingerberg’ each cycling lap, but even a more demanding run course!
A good start for most of our athletes in this 1K swim with Wim VL first man out of the water in 16’39”! At that point leading the AG 40+!
Tony and Hans left the water close to eachother, Tony left T1 first, closely followed by Hans. Once ‘La Machine’ was seated on his Shiv he moved forward strongly and joined Tony.
Unfortunately for Tony he had a ‘chaindrop’ and bumped his knee hardly into his steering. Not a good thing to have in a very intense race format. So pain got him and his shifting device was problematic with sometimes kilometers on the small gear, chaindrops and sometimes able to put the chain back on. But he persisted despite these issues. Very soon Hans closed down a 2′ gap with the guys riding for place 5-10. A very consistent effort of Hans with 328NP at 50K and 324NP at 99K into the bikecourse. Despite that the riders on who he closed the gap had a stronger effort in their 2nd half. Or was there a tailwind? Perhaps in the eye of the tornado there’s a logical acceleration of objects? 🙂
Steady effort of Hans in Kanne with a 324NP at the end of the bike course. Passing halfway at 328NP. Steady to run off fast!
Behind those Hans, Tony and Wim VL our other athletes started to gear up. Steven DB, good swimmer, had a fearmoment during the start of the swim which all triathletes once have or had. On the bike he left this moment behind and took speed. Also Jurgen and Christophe were there, getting into top 10 in this AG40.
In the AG50 category it’s Bart who took place in top 10 very soon. His fellow Wim T chasing him down. Also Bart T in his first race in Belgium, Christophe, Toon (back into the game!), Frederick, Thomas, Michael, Carles and Roel were keen on this bike effort. They settled their places to drop off their bike in T2.
Hans putting down his bike in T2 as the first of our athletes and ready to run towards a top10 today! With 8th place at the finishline and his first win in his new AG (H40) we can say…age is just a number 🙂 and he’s ready for a couple of race on more demanding terrain.
Tony, who thought of quitting the race with a severly swollen knee and annoying mechanicals on the bike. Before the problems Tony was riding 300-320NP and HR 165BPM, once he bumped his knee the pain got into it. His cadence dropped, his NP dropped to 260 (small gearing) and HR dropped 15BPM. But as this is a B-race leading up to his Ironman and not so many racing opportunities this year…he persisted with a run below his capabilities…but still managing 22st in GC!
Not so far behind Tony Wim VL was our man to run off the bike very well and taking his first podium in his AG in his first triathlon in 2years! FInally he’s at it! Good and strong job! With Steven DB and Jurgen also starting the run with the eyes on the AG Podium this category was well filled! Steven taking 5th, Jurgen taking 6th and Christophe taking 10th place today!
Bart DB was aiming for a top10 in his AG and he managed! But also lesson’s learned! Racing in humid and warm conditions needs another drinking protocol than racing in dry and colder conditions. It’s about how much you drink, but also what you are drinking before and during the race! Wim T his eyes were definitely aimed on Bart, but he stayed out of sight at the finishline!
Bart T had a strong bike effort and suffered on the tough hilly run course in his first race here! But a strong endurance brings you home, always! Toon finished his first race again in 3-4years and can look back at a strong road to today during the past year! Also Christophe, Frederick, Michael, Carles and Thomas did a good job towards the finisling. Satisfaction is at its place, looking forward now to our guys on the Ironman and 70.3 distance in Frysman (The Netherlands) and Chtriman (France)!
Next to our triathletes our cyclists prooved they started the season extremely well! Almost all of our riders got into top 10 already this season and are riding very intense in front of the race! Today Anthony (Deftinge – Elite3) was our man in the right breakaway of 4 that could race victory! A late attempt in the last kilometer in which Anthony chased victory didn’t work out for the win, but with a good and strong race finishing 4th can mean a lot in the head of a rider! Great job again of Anthony!
In Meux (Masters) Svenne was keen on a new day of breaking away and suffering! He got himself into that dream scenario. With a 14man lead group it seemed tough to break away, at the end Svenne sprinted towards 7th place!
Next few days more cyclingraces and also the first Time Trial races are back to business!
What a good start of the season for our duathletes today in Kortrijk!
In the male race it’s Robby who puts down a 3’30/km first run, strong bike and finishing off with a 3’36/km run! Duathlon is fast, hard and mean! Robby finishing 17th today!
In the female race national champion Claes was outstanding, but our athletes managed a strong race behind her and were found 2nd and 3rd very soon in the race!
During the bikecourse it was Debbie who overtook Emelie after a strong 1st run! In the 2nd run Emelie came close and finished strongly on 3rd place! Debbie stayed on 2nd place and has an excellent start in this sport!
Also in triathlon the first races were held, Yves started in one of his first 1/4triathlons in Hamme and the hot conditions gave him wings. Heading towards top 10 in the master category!
A bit further, In Beernem a very fast 1/4 triathlon race in sunny conditions! Probably inspired by our strong female duathletes in Kortrijk, she managed a good first race!In the male race Wim DK probably has his fastest ever race and takes 7th, while our cyclocrossrider/Cyclist Klaas starts his season with a triathlon! This coronayear running became a more important part of his program. With some trailrun races in his legs, his fast cycling legs and some swimming this triathlon was a nice goal in his hometown! Onwards to the next one!
Our Elite and also master cyclists from their side showed once again they didn’t miss the start of the season! In Zedelgem the Elite/U23 riders had a very fast race!
Lars Van Coppenolle and Dries Maesen our men in the race.Dries went in the first breakaway with 6 riders and was followed by 14 more riders. 20man sprinting for victory, Dries takes 4th!45.6km/h avg today. After an excellent winter and spring it was definitely time to get racing again! Good start of his season! Lars VC not in the lead group, and has to recover quickly.
Tomorrow another race coming for both!
In the elite race in Rigenée Anthony in the breakaway for 1 lap but not a very open race, massive sprint in the end! Good start of the season riding the race intensities again! Now fine tuning towars upcoming races! For Svenne another top 10 today in Rigenée (Masters race) and closing his opening season with 6th and 10th place! A good start is always a lead up to more!
Let’s begin with the positive news, 2 A-races in triathlon this weekend! With the Spanish Irondistance championships around Girona a classy field entering this race, a lack of races in Europe right now. So races that are held…have a very strong field at the starting line. Alejandro was more than ready to get himself into the race among the pro field, being an agegrouper. Unfortunately or Alejandro a severe crash during the bikecourse obliged him to finish the race in the hospital, no fractures…so now licking wounds and coming back stronger. Eyes soon set on the next one!
With Cameron Wurf (UK) only 5th and Eneko Llanos (Spain) 10th, this race was meant to be hard!
In Sankt-Pölten, Austria Georg, Kris, Jeffrey and Jesse M were ready for their first race in a very long time! The racecourse in Sankt-Pölten is quite hilly on the bike with a fast run course. The swim was divided over 2 lakes, with a 300 run in between both lakes. Tough, with only 15°C water temperature!
Kris (AG60), definitely the most experienced one of them, Kris has a very good winter behind him and felt strong before the race. This resulted in a splendid race in which he takes 5th in his AG! Now approaching his next race…Ironman Estonia!
Jeffrey was very keen on racing and with Challenge Sankt Pölten he had the excellent race to begin his season! A very strong 70.3 distance today, with his fastest half marathon ever…resulted in a 4h33′ performance and taking 16th in his AG! Next race Chtriman 70.3.
Strongest run of the day of our athletes by Jesse M., putting down a 1h23′ half marathon in his very first 70.3 distance and finishing 27th in his AG! Within a few weeks we’ll see him racing in France also!
Georg from his side had a very good day again, and was to glad to be back at it! Finishing 32nd in his AG he can look back to good debute of 2021!
Upcoming weeks our athletes will be racing several races in Belgium, France and Canada! With only 1 goal, give the best they can..and winning has always been with them…so it ‘ll be now!
After a year that was difficult for many athletes, I can say our Colombian athlete Javier is that one guy that definitely had the toughest trainingconditions of all of them. Living on the altitude of Bogota, where very severe rules were set to keep the C virus controllable… things were not easy. No swimming pools open for a whole year, Javier is only swimming for a month at this moment! Above this he had a very long period not being able to get out of his appartment. This obliged him to run 68m laps on the parking lot. Intervals, endurance, … he didn’t skip any of it!
He didn’t complain, he acted, he did…for that, he deserves the deepest respect of all sportsmen. The true sportsmanship is in consistency, perseverance, finding solutions and slamming down the hammer at the end…even when you get ‘hit in the face’ more than once.
Today Ironman 70.3 Acapulco, Mexico was held. A race that was in his book for a long time…and the first race in more than a year. Even 2 weeks ago it wasn’t 100% sure he could make te trip abroad. But once he was there the racing vibes grew. And how!
Javier did a good job, swimming a 1’33/100 pace! Fortunately swimming isn’t a weak spot of him. So with 4 weeks of key sessions he was on it. There was ‘a feeling’, maybe not the ‘shark’feeling, but at least the ‘orca’feeling.
On the bike Javier did an excellent job, constant pacing and moving up towards 4th in his AG, 21st overall!
The run has always been the trickiest point for Javier. And when you’re in for an IM top 5…you know there are athletes putting pressure on you…
A consistent year of running helps of course, and pushing it in the front keeps him within the top5! Ironman 70.3champs qualifier, but above all…one step forward towards Ironman Lake Placid, USA.
Good results of our athletes again today!Not many races, but those who are organized are dominated by the right athletes , the ones that are not afraid to suffer against themselves!North C-trail: Tough conditions for the participants, our athetes conquered wind, rain and storm. But after all, not super cold and athletes may not/never be afraid om some rain and wind.In the 21K race it’s Nathan who takes victory! 2nd race of the season so far for him and 2nd win!While in the female race Julie takes 4th and Veerle finishes a few minutes later!In the 28K race it’s Lesly who’s the guy on the podium, finishing 3rd!
A few minutes later Steven settles down at place 6 overall (2nd master)In 10Miles by the sea our athletes were also strongly represented. Sven puts down another strong race in a strong field, finishing 5th!
Also our other triathletes gave the best of themselves and finished just inside top 20 (Dave 17, Niels 20). Yves takes 13th and finishes frist 1 M+45!
In Lembeke, the 15K trailrun was also held under the same conditions, but that’s what Robby likes. It inspired him to warm up his body and takes the first place! Another podium for Robby this season! Klaas (cyclocrossrider) isn’t afraid of some mud either, he runs off hard and takes 5th! Soon his races on wheels will start again, but the first part of the season the running races gave him an extra boost!
In Belgium racing still not at full force, but some countries give the right example how to approach individual sports these days! The approach is simple: raceday!
In UK it’s Alejandro (Spain) who could race the UK nationals. This race is his final and only race in approach of the Spanish Irondistance championships on May 30th, where he will find a tough course with 2200D+ on the bike! At a certain level speed also plays a role in Long distance triathlon. Training went fine untill now, but a race can confirm this and is a trial/error possibility in taper off and pre-race nutrition.
A good feeling leading up towards this race gave confidence, and this feeling also was transferred into performance today!
A good first run in Yorkshire lead him towards a good position at the beginning of the non-drafting bikecourse! His first 10K was ran at 3’26″/km, on the bike a steady effort was planned and constantly powering the bike @290-300watts made him put down the bike in a top20 position. (~69Kg)
Of course places are divided in the after bike run, in triathlon…but also in duathlon! You simply need to be able to run fast off the bike. Today the first race in more than 18months for Alejandro (Since IM world champs in Kona, Hawaii ’19!) but he prooves that no man has become a worse athlete of training right. Training smart, to perform better! In a 3’29/km effort he moves up towards 15th place in GC and 6th AG place!
Triathletes often are not so keen on racing duathlons, this because of the hard running start. But a good duathlon can really be an eye-opener and boost for triathletes! In situations as the one we’re in at the moment it can be the perfect moment to try.
In Topolobampo, Mexico Carlos had his last race towards Challenge Cancun (May 2nd). But also his first race since a long time! Hot conditions of course, but these athletes are used to this. A good swim for Carlos, followed by a bike-run effort at anaerobic threshold makes him move up strongly towards this race! A good test and effort towards Cancun in 2weeks from here!
All individual sports competitions at the moment are made difficult to get organised these days. But step by step organizers find solutions to get athletes back to competition.
Past few months a couple of trailruns and road running races were organised, most of them were won (or at least podium) by one of our athletes.
This weekend Trailrun Hoeilaart was held, with +/-250 participants on 4 distances (6K, 11K, 15K, 21K) these races proove to be done without any risks on healthcare, but with a lot of joy for athletes (and coaches).
The races that get organized are a relief for many athletes and something to look forward to these days! In a ‘normal’ year our athletes are involved in high level cycling races and international triathlon races around the world in this period of the year. And mostly we have athletes in Ironmanraces from half of April untill October non-stop. This year, we are patient and hopefull of what comes.
With good news for example from UK, where Alejandro is competing the nationals duathlon in 2 weeks. Other countries will follow of course.
In Hoeilaart our athletes once again to be ready and in competitive shape!
In the 11K trailrun it’s Robby who once again takes podium, and more! He wins this intense trailrun with a combination of steep ups and steep downs! Perfect to lift the body to a higher level and fight your own mind. Tim finishes a few minutes behind at 14th place!
In the longest version, 21K this tough racecourse was fearfull. Perfect weather, dry surface but still the hills to conquer. Our athletes dominated this keyrace of the day! Battle modus was on, with good performances of Veerle in the women’s race and our male triathletes! In the male race Michael, Bart DB, Niels (14th) and Kristof (12th) finish just outside the top 10.In the very front of the race it’s Wim DK who takes 6th (and by far the fastest master), while Stijn (2nd) and Nathan (1st!) are battling for the win up front! In the female race Julie takes 10th! But with a 4’30 gap for Nathan he shows what we predicted, fireworks! Stijn kicks ass of the rest of the field and after Trail de Bruxelles he now takes his 2nd podium in one of the bigger trailevents! For Nathan this normally was his last race before Ironman Hamburg (Germany). But as this race has been postponed Chtriman 70.3 (France) will be the first!
Vadim, In 2019 you raced Kona after a very strong qualifier in Boulder,USA. U immediately wanted to take a chance on getting back to Kona in 2020…and succeeded in Arizona, only 5 weeks after the World championships 2019! This meant a relaxed view on 2020 with a certain ticket for the World Champs 2020. Only…because of Covid the race wasn’t held in 2020. So your qualifier counts for 2021! How does it feel already being qualified for the next world championships?
It feels very nice because I have less pressure on myself. My training became more relaxed mentally. I believe it also translates to better recovery & performance in the long term.
In Canada the approach of the lockdown changed quite a lot. Pools open, pools closed, pools open,…you trained a lot on the VASA ergo. Currently you are back in the pool! How did this on/off period affect your swimming skills?
I have VASA since August 2020. Recently we travelled to another province for a month and all my sessions during that period were in the pool. It took about 3 sessions (<=45 min each) to feel like there was no break and after that I even had few sessions where I swam easy at the pace which was not easy before the lockdown. Then I had to return and switch back to VASA which caused my upper body to be sore for a week! So I’m very confident the VASA training is at least as good as in the water in terms of muscle power and endurance and it takes very short to get used to the water. Also I have some allergy to chlorine so VASA makes my training more comfortable.
You are used to a lot and long indoor sessions, both on treadmill and turbotrainer. So lockdown wasn’t a big change in running/cycling for you. How did you look at this whole lockdown according to training?
The lockdown didn’t change a lot about my training except the switch to VASA. However since we work from home, I have 1h30 spare daily because of no commutes and I think it means better recovery and performance. So overall I think the lockdown even has a potential to make me improve.
In 2021 you will race the Kona World championships, but after a year without competition you want to be back at it and perform before this race. Where and what do you wish to perform or aim at?
Well, you still make me race at home :-))). My calendar includes 70.3 at Florida in April and a full in Tulsa at the end of May. I’d like to qualify for 70.3 WC which is supposed to be in Utah this year and most of all I want to see if I can improve my running at the races before Kona. I’m however ready mentally for the scenario where one more season is postponed, I’m pretty sure following the program you prepare will only make me stronger even if there are no races.
Thank you Vadim and onwards to Utah and Kona 2021!
Alejandro, you are a Spanish athlete living in London. In 2019 you qualified for the World championships in Kona, Hawaii and finished in a nice time of 9h16′. In your qualifying race you became 2nd overall agegrouper in South Africa. A huge step, and opening windows for next season. In 2020 u wanted to chase a new ticket and pick up racing experience in Kona to do even better. How did you experience the lockdown and training during this lockdown?
Lockdown happened just 2 weeks before Ironman South Africa with all the hard work already done. When the race was cancelled I got quite upset but that feeling vanished quickly when I just realised how bad things were out there.During the rest of the first lockdown I just tried to disconnect from races and social media as there was lots of negativity around. First days were quite a challenge living here in the UK just with my wife and son but with all my family and most of my friends in Spain. In terms of training I really never stopped and here we were “lucky” to be able to exercise for an hour everyday that I’d use for taking a walk with my wife and son. Most of my training is indoors so did not affect my daily routine much. Swimming was another story. Fortunately I had an old second hand vasa trainer that I’d use almost everyday.
Living in UK it was very difficult, you had a severe lockdown and pools currently still are closed. During past year you have been training a lot on the VASA trainer, how did you experience this as a change for a regular swim?
I started using a non erg vasa trainer that was quite nice for swim specific strength but not very good for swimming freestyle. In june I sold it and bought a Vasa ergometer and started using it straight away. In terms of comparing it to swimming in the water I’d say using the Vasa ergometer is comparable to doing pull and paddles intervals but harder! Although you don’t use your core as much as when swimming in water you can still engage it and rotate a little bit on the bench to use your back and core muscles and avoid pulling with a flat body position.I’ve used it a lot since then and actually haven’t had a chance yet to swim in a pool (it’s going to be 1 year since the last time I swam in a pool). I could go for a swim on a lake near home last August and it just confirmed that not only I had not lost my swim fitness but I felt stronger in the water.Still I need to go back to the pool (hopefully they will reopen in March) to test how my swim is after almost 1 year just doing Vasa. But I’m certain it’s not gonna be that bad.
You have always been used to quite some indoortraining on the bike and treadmill, but of course you alternate with outdoor sessions. In a normal year you also spend quite some training/working time in Spain. I suppose that’s something to look forward too in the near future also in preparation of Ironman Vitoria-Gasteiz and the Spanish triathlon championships?
I’ve been training outdoors more often lately especially on the bike but still love training indoors and watching movies or listening to audiobooks while running or cycling. But I have realised how important it is to go outside and ride your TT bike before races. Keeping a good aero position outdoors riding on rough roads with wind gusts and so on has nothing to do with riding on the trainer.Regarding Vitoria I will hopefully travel there 1 month before the race and do some riding there. I’ve heard it is quite a fast course!
Javier, in 2019 you could qualify for Kona. A big dream you chased and realised after putting down your strongest Ironman in Cairns. A big step forward, of course you wanted to continue this step forward in 2020. Untill the lockdown in Colombia came. How did you experience the lockdown and training?
My pre-Covid19 plan was to chase a 2021 Kona Slot in IM Wisconsin (sept 13th) in order to have enough time to recover and prepare well. When the pandemic started I thought my late year race was not in cancellation´s risk. So I had no problems with keep high motivation´ levels. The lock down brought big changes and challenges in my job. The first 3 months were so difficult and needed a big effort to modify the way my team works. Fortunately I could manage and take the control back. The training gave me the mental refresh I needed to keep the calm. The homeworking let me avoid the Bogota´s Traffic jam and save about 90 minutes/day, so I started to sleep and recover better.
In Colombia pools were closed from April to September and now they still aren’t available very often. In Bogota you could only swim in the weekend, and for now all is closed again. You are a steady swimmer. How do you look to this difficulty? I spent my childhood swimming. This background still pays, I remember i raced in IM 70.3 Panama 2016 without any swimming training in more than one year, and survived to 1900 meters in Panama Channel, and achieve a 70.3 World Championship´s slot. This time I tried to save the shape with strength work at least 3 times by week, and did some open waters. When I came back to the pool I still swam relatively good. I could swam about 5 weeks until the Covid´s second wave´s lock down. I´m confident I can swim soon and fastly recover the shape.
Cycling and running outdoors weren’t possible also, which made you train a lot on the treadmill and turbo. This fortunately was something you are quite used to. U managed on doing your running sessions on a 68m parking lot, down at your appartment. Non-sportsmen call that crazy, sportsmen say ‘respect’ to this. How did you experience this?
The running sessions on the parking lot was crazy, I focused on my ipod playlist and not get an ankle´s twist on the thousands of turns that I have to do. I ran in that conditions about 2 months (from march to may), when I came back to street my running shape still was good. And my mental strenght too. My cycling training did not change, before Covid more than 95% of my cycling training was indoor because of time efficiency , bad weather and safety. With the lock down I started to do some sessions on Zwift,… so my lonely cycling sessions started to be more fun
In 2021 you are racing Ironman70.3 Acapulco, Mexico and Ironman Lake Placid, USA. Training is going fine, without swimming at this point. Performance and consistency are going hand in hand for athletes, past 9 months I never felt any lack of motivation but you always looked at the positive points in this matter. Eyes on what will be, when it will be…and meanwhile you are training smart, to perform better later.
You planned on me a recovery period last September. I could refresh the body and mind, and came back to training in good conditions. I think my shape is coming back and I´m going to be ready and strong for 2021 races. I hope to be able to come back to KONA.
I´m hungry for race again!
Thanx Javier for sharing us your thoughts and onwards to what’s coming next!