TIME in a heat chamber would have been a handy addition for Harry Jones and his preparation for the 2018 Triathlon Confederation Asian Cup Championship.
Unfortunately, there were none available in Port Macquarie so the best he could have done was run around in a jumper and a beanie.
In the end, the 2018 King of the Mountain winner had to come up with Plan C.
It doesn’t mean 2017 Port Macquarie-Hastings Sportsperson of the Year’s expectations are any higher or lower for an overall final finishing position – he doesn’t have any.
“Generally when people put too much expectation on themselves they don’t prevail so I will go in there and do the best I can,” he said.
The 26-year-old admitted he wasn’t looking forward to the hot and humid conditions that are expected in China.
“Coming from nice weather here in Port Macquarie, going over there will be a big difference change in climate, but I’m looking forward to it,” he said.
Jones has never competed in Hong Kong at the elite level which was part of the reason why he chose to compete there.
“With ITU racing it’s like an application process and you’re always guaranteed to go in so I picked this race because it’s relatively close to home and I’ve never been to Hong Kong before,” he said.
“It’s not a holiday; I’m there to compete and then come home.”
The Port Macquarie triathlete suffered a setback two weeks ago which forced him to withdraw from competitive events in Japan.
But now he’s ready to return to competition.
“I was supposed to head over to Japan a few weeks ago to compete and then this would have been my last race for the first block of racing for the season,” Jones said.
“Then I picked up a cold – and I’m not trying to make excuses – but I was out for two weeks.
“I’m fit now and training is going well so anything can happen in the race but I feel I potentially could win the race.”
He believes the sprint distance – and not the traditional standard distance – will work in his favour.
“It’s going to be hot, humid, windy and could even rain which means it won’t be as quick as usual sprint distance races due to those conditions.
“You’ve got to expect the unexpected.”
Jones admitted he had enjoyed his first year of competing on the international stage as an elite athlete.
He was now focused on gradual improvement.
“It’s been a good learning curve,” he said.
“It’s a massive step for me, but it’s good experience and I think for the next six months it will be about learning to race as full time (elite) professional.”
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