Jodie Stimpson: National Sprint Championships done… now onto Hamburg

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Well I’ve got to admit leading up to this race I was as nervous as hell because Helen Jenkins was on the start list and I knew what good form she was in! But these nerves soon turned to determination to race and hold my own against our best female athlete.

However my roller coaster of emotions took another twist and they soon turned to disappointment, when news came in that Helen wasn’t going to be racing. Helen had such a hard race at Kitzbühel – it was fair enough she needed a weekend without racing!!

It’s always great to test yourself against the very best, and that’s no disrespect to any of the girls who were racing because there were still some real top quality athletes racing but as a top athlete you always want to test yourself against the best. With Helen being current World Champion it would have given me a real indication as to where I am in the lead up to Hamburg, I will just have to wait until London to race against her.

The race went really well, me and my mum drove down to Wales yesterday (Friday) for the race briefing and drove into the cold and rainy weather that greeted us on the Welsh border!

I woke up today and the weather seemed like it was going to be generous and not rain (which it didn’t) but we couldn’t escape the cold water and air temperature and the blustery winds.

Today was my last hard session of a big training block and I went into the race a bit tired. That soon went straight to the back of my mind as I started to warm up, I went around the bike course to check out if there was any gravy or puddles on the course and luckily there wasn’t.

When I got in for my warm up swim the water temperature was A LOT colder than I thought it was going to be, but with it only being a 750m swim it wasn’t too bad.

I got out the water in 4th (which I’m not happy with!!! – as Abbie Thorington had built up a 30 second gap) I’m swimming really well in the pool at the moment but I just can’t seem to make it happen for me in open water. Hopefully this won’t be the case in Hamburg!

I’m working with Orca at the moment with my wetsuit, and today I raced in the 3.8 which gave me a lot more buoyancy in the water – but I’m just struggling to make it happen in the open water.

Onto the bike and straight into time trial mode (I think I’m going to name this ‘Michelle mode’ because I always think of Michelle when I get out of T1 and just put my head down and dig in). I caught Abbie after the first lap and we carried on pushing the pace, working really well together and got a minute gap on the chasing pack.

I’ve got to say a BIG thank you to Paul at Brotherton Cycles, as he has just given me a new S-WORKS frame which I’m in love with!! It went up that steep hill a treat!

By the time I got to T1 the cold air temp had totally tightened up my calves which made it hard to run – it lasted for the whole of the run, but I just pushed on and I am happy with the result.

Now Hamburg is next weekend and I’m SO EXCITED to race in a World Championship race!

BRING IT ON!!!

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