05 May 2006
This is the first chance I have had since Tiomila to write anything about it, I have had a really busy week with travelling back from Sweden, catching up with Liis, catching up with sleep, and then preparing for Estonia.
Tiomila was an awesome experience, and I highly recommend it to anyone who has not been. I watched the junior and women's races on the internet from the hotel, and then fell asleep before the start of the mens relay. The original plan called for me to run leg 9 for my club, IL Tyrving. Unfortunately our best runner, Audun Weltzein, had to pull out at the last minute with a cold, so it was all change. That meant I now was running leg 10, and due to television committments, I wouldn't know how far I would be running until the morning itself. I was woken at 4.30 to be driven to the event in time to warm up, check out the layout and run, with a little time to spare. Unfortunately our leg 2 runner had had a bit of a disaster, and had lost quite a lot of time, and despite some good runs by our other legs, we were well behind our estimated times. Therefore I only started running at about 9am.
The course was set at 14km, and I was fairly nervous. I started just behind Halden 2nd team, and caught them up on the way to the first control. I really enjoyed the fast open forest, and the more technical areas broke it up nicely. I was running very well, and had even pulled away from the Halden runner slightly when Mattias Merz caught us both up. Both of us tried to stay with the flying Merz, and I managed for about 3km before I had to give up. That took me round to the spectator control, and I was still running well. After that though, I started to tire, I wasn't running with anybody any more, and worst of all, I started to get stomach cramps. I simultaneously wanted to throw up and empty my bowels. I kept going, but I was losing concentration and made a stupid 2 minute mistake, and my speed was dropping off too. I managed to pull it together by the end to beat in a couple more teams, but the splits show that at the spectator control Merz had caught me by just over a minute, but after that he took another 6 minutes out of me over 5km.
After the race I still felt awful and it took about an hour for my stomach to settle down. We finished in 48th place, and I pulled up 7 places, taking 35th best time on last leg.
Pleasing performance up to a point, but ultimately quite disappointing, both for myself and the team as we know that both could have done better.
Leg by leg analysis of the Tyrving team here (to be completed)