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ESC Update - May 2017

The final academy weekend of the winter was based in Torbay and saw the first day combined with the South West Skills Schools which allowed the younger athletes to see what they were aspiring to and the older athletes to give a little back and encourage those below. This day culminated in a mixed relay competition with all the athletes taking part. The second day saw an early morning sea swim; a little cold but useful nonetheless to prepare for the following weekend in Llanelli and plenty of bike time to continue to work on the all important skills for the coming season.

For Academy athletes the pressures of school work increase at a time when racing is becoming more serious, it's a challenge however, challenge is one of the reasons we do this right? Llanelli is now developing itself as a good season opening race with an inland swim and a often windy bike ride and run close to the sea-front. The weather in May can also be changeable however, this time for the younger athletes it stayed dry. The long straighter stretches on the bike course really allow the wind to provide challenge and good handling skills and positioning in a pack will certainly help you conserve energy for the run out into the wind and back with it. With the race also acting as a European Championship qualifier and an event offering the opportunity to qualify for ETU Junior European Cup races, the standard of racing is also high. There were, as always good results for the South West with several top 10 finishes.

For ESCoach athletes the season was really starting to kick in too. James Travers PB'd in the Bristol 10K, Maria Powell continued with a strong season of learning and being domestique with the Bike-Science race team; Colin Porter started his triathlon season in the Cotswolds and followed up with a good Tour of Wessex sportive, Ollie Holman competed at Southport Sprint and then came Natalie Seymour. Since racing in Bahrain in December, Natalie took an easy few weeks around Christmas and the New Year before gradually building back up with the aim of qualifying for the 70.3 World Championships in Chattanooga in September. To do this as a professional means collecting as many points from racing as possible before the end of the qualification period. May was set to be a busy month with races at Both Pay D'Aix and Barcelona 70.3 and having finished third in the first race a few tweaks to race strategy and plenty of recovery saw her finish second the following weekend in Barcelona. The result of these races meant qualification was assured so the next decision was whether to change plan for the next few races in June; more to come on this! Finally Eton sprints was a popular event being an Age-group qualifier for the World Championships later in the year. Jon Waring, Maria Powell and James Travers all completed and finished well albeit for James just as prep for the Island Games coming later in the year. Maria qualified for the World Champs and Jon now fully understands what he needs to do and it's not that far off! With a couple more qualification races left there is still a chance for his dream to happen.





 
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