PORT Macquarie triathlete Harry Jones thought he could have benefitted from a change in format for the national championships on the Gold Coast at the weekend.
Storm run-off from a recent cyclone meant the traditional triathlon format had to be turned into a duathlon event.
Unfortunately, Jones conceded he went out too hard in the first leg and by the run home he was physically spent.
“Due to the weather conditions, the triathlon was turned into a duathlon because of the water quality,” he said.
“It played into my hands a bit being a run-bike-run so I had a good first leg and was only 10 seconds off the leader.
“I went a bit too hard too early and died out a little bit coming into the bike leg and by the last run I had not much left.”
He said he was still satisfied with his 15th place finish, although he had set a goal of a top six finish when he knew the swim leg wouldn’t be a factor.
“I thought maybe I could have gotten a top five or six finish due to my running ability, but in national championships you never know what’s going to happen,” he said.
Adding to the challenge of Jones’ quest for a top six finish came in the form of two New Zealand, one Swiss, and two Chinese competitors.
“There were five international athletes that showed up and they all finished in the top 10,” he said.
“I’m notorious for my running so I thought maybe I could have come home with a bit of a pay day.
“But national championships are at such an incredibly hard level to comprehend how quick, fast and furious those guys are.”
I thought maybe I could have gotten a top five or six finish due to my running ability, but in national championships you never know what’s going to happen.Harry Jones
Encouragingly, Jones said he didn’t feel his troublesome left foot problem was an issue.
“I’m doing everything I can to run pain free, but I think with the arthritis in my left foot I’ve just got to deal with it because there isn’t much you can do,” he said.
“The last couple of weeks it’s been going really well, but fortunately it pulled up well.”
This weekend Jones will head to Coffs Harbour for the Coffs Harbour Triathlon.
“I’ve been preparing for it for the last five months so there’s a bit of pressure to do well,” he said.