Imagine our surprise at receiving an invite to The Championships 2017. Two weeks prior Shane Strauchan, Michelle Ruitenbeek and myself competed in Challenge Shepparton and what started as a bit of fun ended up with 3rd place.

A team meeting was held and we decided that we would accept and go along for the journey.

The Championships are held in Slovakia. None of us had been to this part of Europe before so it was unknown what we were in for. We loved Slovakia!

We did have some hurdles getting there though… Shane unfortunately was unable to compete so we recruited John Barker. Michelle had a hernia operation 6 weeks before the event so for us it was all about having some fun and getting some experience at a big event.

Race week was here. We went to Samorin to check out the venue. It was phenomenal. X Bionic Sphere complex is on 100 acres with state of the art facilities. We did a few small sessions on the course in between some sightseeing. We stayed in Brataslava, did some trips to neighbouring Hungary and Austria, tapered our training but most of all it was about the experience of competing with a team and having a great experience.

Race day arrived. We got to see the likes of Richard Varga and Allistair Brownlee start. The course was fast. Our team came 4th in our category. We had a blast with a great effort from all of our team. Highly recommend the experience.

 

Rob Woodward – June 2017

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