Thursday, December 27, 2012

Sydney Trail Series Race Report

The Final Instalment for 2012

I finish the 30/50 challenge with another win. This time with my running mate and No Roads Expeditions Team Mate Beth Cardelli. I’m still sick but I’m recovering. I am still getting over my bacteria lung infection. I rest and rebuild my strength. 
A week later I have been asked by my good friend from Mountain Sports Sean Greenhill to be one of the Sydney Trail Series Race Ambassador. I’m knackered, but I believe it is so important to help out the trail running community. I jump at the chance.
I’m exhausted. Like most runners, being Christmas Silly Season I’d been out on Friday night at a fundraiser to help raise money for a friends sick son Angus Higgambotham. The Help Angus Go Home trivia night was a huge success and we raised over $50,000.
I pull myself back together and I prepare myself for the tough technical 10.2km single man track race. All the big guns had turned up, Andy Lee, Brendan Davies, Gill Fowler. I was going to have to race this one hard to beat Gilli (Gill Fowler won and smashed the record for the Great North Walk 100 Miler only 2 weeks earlier).

Sydney Trail Series (STS)
The count down went off and I was kicking it up at the front. I rolled along the single man track for 2km and up the first set of many bush stairs. They stung. I let the boys who are behind me pass. I hit the top of the climb, I duck under the pipe line and I smile as I know the worst is behind me.
I scoot along the sandstone ridge top and bust out onto the wide fire trail. I am passed by another bloke but I stick with a guy and use him as my pacer. I power to the top of the climb and jump ahead of him at the first of many steep descent. I jump, bound, leap and love the free falling experience and within minutes I have landed on the banks of the Manly Dam.
I wave to Gordon one of the photographers for the day and I shoot back up the single man track, back up to the top of the ridge. I dare to look back. No females are following. I relax. I power along, and jump onto the bridge over the dam. I extend my legs and let my stride run free. 
At the end of the bridge I spot my friend Jane and I ask her if there are any females behind me. “No Shona”. She excitedly replies.
I rest, relax and chill. I do what I have to do and I make it to the top of the final climb. I allow my friend Chris to pass and I roll down the final descent to the finish line in 52 minutes 16 seconds. First place was secured. I manage to win an awesome amount of prizes including $250 from Mountain Sports, $100 worth of Gift Vouchers from Footpoint Store in Mosman, Beer and Hammer Sports Nutrition.

2012 has been an amazing year. If anyone said I would achieve so much in a year I would think they were crazy. It did not all fall into my lap. I trained and worked hard for every race PB, podium or win.
I fought through shin splits at the start of the year, hence the reason for me to compete in triathlons. I had a bad hamstring injury in May. I was diagnosed with asthma in June. I suffered ligament damage in my ankle in July. To finish the year off I contracted a bacteria lung infection in November. I pushed through every obstacle and learnt from my experiences along the way.

A Year In Review
January Footpoint Trail Series Race 1 1st Female
Feb Cole Classic 2km Ocean Swim (The day after running Mt Sol not smart I sunk!).
Feb Huski Long Course Tri 98th
March Coastrek 50km Team Event 1st Place Overall New Record
April Bateman’s Bay Ultimate Tri 20th place
May Footpoint Trail Series Race 2 1st place Overall
May The North Face 100km 3rd Female
June Glow Worm Tunnel Marathon 3rd Female
July Footpoint Trail Series Race 3 2nd Female, Female Series Winner.
July Trail Running Australia Launched while I had the flu ;-)
July Mt Sol DNS Ankle Injury
August City2Surf 57:10 PB
August Oxfam Trailwalker Sydney 1st Place Overall No Roads Expeditions New Record, Andrew Lee, Jonathan Worswick, Paul Robertson.
September Coastal Classic 1st Female New Record.
September Surf Coast Century 1st Female
October Great Ocean Walk 100 1st Female New Record
November Retired Sick Bacteria Lung Infection 110km Great North Walk 100 Mile Unofficial 2nd Female 3rd Overall 100km 
November 30/50 Challenge Female Team Winner No Roads Expeditions with Beth Cardelli, New Record
December Sydney Trail Series Race 1 1st Female
December Ultra Training Australia Launched.