The team met in Sofia at various hours of the afternoon and evening on Sunday 13th July. We were most impressed with our accommodation, quite luxurious really with shared rooms but no other teams around, a huge lobby with terrific wifi and the meals were going to prove to be just as impressive.
Our first morning together involved introducing ourselves as we had planned to be working closely with the New Zealand team. Their coach, Rob Jessup and our coach, Hanny had worked together to plan the training activities for the week.
Our training this week has involved:
· Middle distance training with a map walk and course on Shiroki Dol
· Long distance training on Govedarci – a course with a long leg
· Sprint intervals in a park
· Long simulation on “Marchaevo”
· Middle simulation on “Reylovo”
· Sprint simulation on “Vazrajdane”
· Walk/jog intervals around relay map.
By all accounts the team has been extremely happy with the professional quality of the training and the effort of Rob in bringing flags across to Bulgaria, setting the courses and having them preprinted, extra effort with splits for mass starts has been very much appreciated. To have the assistance of Toph to put out controls and his demo of 3D rerun has been invaluable. How lucky are we to have the experience of our own WOC runner Hanny with her knowledge of pre race preparation and working through major competition races? That has been terrific for all involved and the two teams have worked extremely well together. Anna and I have had a blast as Managers and have even been entrusted to collect some controls – like boot camp really !
With the training week complete we look ahead to a week of competition. The emphasis on the athletes has been to do their best, to go in feeling prepared and to enjoy the experience and not put heavy expectations on themselves.
We’d like to sincerely thank the Aussies for your support – to know that so many are reading their blog and checking out their facebook page and showing appreciation for their intstagaram pics has been really comforting.
Rest assured all the athletes are very appreciative of this experience and their behaviour and commitment have been exemplary. They will be doing their very best this week.
The competition week program is as follows:
· Tues 22nd SPRINT Samokov
· Wed 23rd LONG Malyovitsa
· Thurs 24th Rest Day
· Fri 25th MIDDLE QUAL Zheleznica
· Sat 26th MIDDLE FINAL Zheleznica
· Sun 27th RELAY Borovets
We’d love you to follow the events via the JWOC 2014 website: http://jwoc2014.bg/index.php We are 7 hours behind Eastern Standard Time Aus.
For each race 40 men and 40 women (randomly chosen) will have GPS tracking, except in the relay where it will only the 3rd leg male runners.
Hopefully (depending on wifi at the arena) we can keep you updated with results and pics via our facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/AusJWOC2014
With a full rest day tomorrow our athletes are starting to prepare fully for their races and think about their preferred start blocks. I’ll inform you of start times via the facebook page and their blog during the week. Hanny and I are enjoying our new roles immensely. Cheers from Bulgaria.
Karen Blatchford, Team Manager