The elites are going to be racing on a brand new WTS course this weekend as Montreal hosts the event for the very first time. But before the first start gun goes off on Saturday, some of the athletes, including Mario Mola (ESP), Kirsten Kasper (USA), Alexis LePage (CAN) and Andrea Hewitt (NZL) sat down with some of the local media to chat about the upcoming action.
What are the preparations you have before a standard distance race?
“We train all year long in order to prepare for any race. Obviously throughout the year there is a mix of sprint distance races with Olympic distance races, but at the end of the day it is quite a long effort anyway so we don’t do anything specifically for one of the other. We just try to prepare mentally for it. It is definitely going to be a tough race, but yeah I am very excited to be here in Montreal, it is the first time that I am here, so I am just taking time, go easy the first couple of days and then get ready for the show.”
What do you owe the success of the Spanish team this year?
“I don’t know, I don’t think there is just one reason, there are always different things that end up making a generation. If I have to say one reason, the one that always comes to my head and I have mentioned it before, but we have been lucky to have athletes in the past and even to now, such as Javier Gomez. We are able to spend time with and see how he does things. We just believe that we do things well and we are working hard, so if there is something that Javi has done it is unbelieveable and hard and complicated but that is what we are dealing with right now. We know that things are going to be hard and it is not going to be easy of course, but we will work hard. We have to be in front and we have to fight to be on the podium. In every single race we end up in the place that we deserve.”
Do you think you’ll be able to put up a fast run on the Montreal course?
“I don’t know! It is a big jump from a 5km to a 10km. When you start a 5km run you have done before about 40 minutes of effort. Whereas here when you start the run you have already about 1 hour 20 minutes of effort on your legs and your body, so you are not as fresh. But I feel confident that I am at the moment in good shape, I will try to do my best. I unfortunately have not had the opportunity to check the course yet but I am excited about the race here and I will try to do my best. And at the end like I always say, the time is always a small detail, the most important thing you can do is just race and try to win.”
How does it feel to race two WTS races back-to-back in North America, bringing the Series back closer to your home country?
“It is exciting to race in North America, especially in Canada. This city holds a special place in my heart because my Dad is from here, so I come here every year to visit my grandparents. So it means a lot to be here. To race back-to-back is always challenging, but it is a good challenge.”
What are your goals for the race on Saturday, especially how can you prepare if it rains on Saturday?
“You have to prepare for anything, so my goal is to execute my race plan and try to get on that podium for sure. Rain is something that is out of our control, so you have to be ready for anything.”
Are you excited to be racing in your home nation?
“Surely there are advantages to be back home! On the other hand, it’s the physical and mental preparations that have the biggest impact on my final result. The fact that I ran here last year does play a role in relieving the pressure. I’m in a known territory, I am born here and it’s always nice to run at home in front of my friends and family.”
“I’m still a pretty young athlete on the circuit so I’m still in a learning phase. I don’t really have an objective, no anticipation. Obviously, in the best-case scenario, I would like to be in the top 20, the top 25 or the top 15. But this year, my objective is to give my 110 %.”
How does experience count when it comes to racing in a WTS?
“Yeah I guess I am experienced, but I don’t think of myself like that, I just go into every race trying to have a good race. I think being here for two weeks has been good preparation for me, I have been able to prepare, I don’t have the jet lag to worry about or things like that. I have seen the race course and its in the middle of the city, so I am excited to race it.”
What are you impressions on the bike course since you have been staying here and have seen it?
“I think it is going to be really tough. I have been staying at a place where I have to go up the hill, so I have been going up and down those hills. I know that the downhill is really easy, so you can soft pedal but the uphill is really hard. Actually on the commuter bike yesterday I went up the hill and I actually walked because it was so steep. And then we have to run up that hill too so its going to be tough.”
The women will get the 2017 ITU World Triathlon Montreal underway at 13:30 on Saturday, August 05, while the men will follow the next day at 13:30 local time on Sunday, August 06. Follow all of the action live at triathlonlive.tv and on twitter @triathlonlive.
Join the conversation with the hashtag #WTSMontreal