The Stockholm Round-Up
I'm back from Stockholm, in Italy, and have successfully finished my first European race for 2011!
The Brief Summary
From lane 3 and 4th fastest on paper before starting I finished 4th in 50.72. Beautiful day around 28 degrees and only a slight wind. Felt good warming up considering the 40 hours travel the day before, and felt good running but lacked that 'ping' that you feel when everything is going well. All in all a happy race first up; as I said - I wasn't expecting much from the race other than just having a good hit out.
A Little Deeper
If I had to be picky about my warm up, the warm up 'track' wasn't ideal as we didn't actually have a track. It was a synthetic soccer field, which obviously is not the same feel as a track. For me, I would have loved to actually go over some hurdles on the track and get the feel for the place and the surface. Over here in Europe the tracks are always just a bit different, not to mention that the shapes are different; some long bends, some long straights. Weird, I know. I also didn't get a long rep (about 120-150m) in before going onto the track, this acts as a 'primer' of some of the systems I will be using in the race.
I generally felt good, but those things just stopped me from being super comfortable and aggressive in the race.
I stayed with the leaders without too much problem for the first 200, and as I tried to go with them, it was just a struggle on the second bend. So I dropped off the pace and by the time the straight hit, I was a few meters trailing. I hurdled quite well, and got my stride pattern in (14s to 6, 15s home), but had to push the last hurdle a bit. I certainly didn't feel like I had worked that hard after wards, which is a good thing I guess..
So I am in Italy now at the Australian Institute of Sport European Training Centre, which is freakin amazing, and which I'll chat about in my next entry. I'll also write about a very interesting couple of chats I have had over the past week with regard to Australian Athletics and the development of athletes.
Stay tuned ;-)