European Junior Triathlon European Championships 2012 in Eilat


This has definitely been the highlight of my season so far. After driving to Germany the day before the qualifier, I came 3rd Junior in the Aquathlon Event and hence qualified for the German Junior Girls team for Eilat, Israel. I arrived before the others arrived since I flew from London and I have to say the flight was quite an experience! I have never seen so many security checks just to fly somewhere! I guess that is the reason why El Al is the safest airline.

Team Juniorinnen-Eilat 2012

On the day before the race, when everyone had finally arrived, we all went out on our bikes to look at the bike and run course. Then we did a swim warm up in the Red sea, and in the end went for a little run. In the evening we all went to the Race briefing - it is all very exciting the first time you get to do it! And very quickly the big day had arrived! We didn’t race until in the early afternoon, so after a lie in and good breakfast, we all headed to the athlete’s lounge and checked in. And soon everything was set up and the swim warm up ended up shorter than expected. Before the start we all had to line up, but they made us wait for ages in the midday sun because they seemed to have some difficulties with something.

And then it was there, we started. I got into my swim really well actually and was really happy with my position, until my goggles got knocked off. I swallowed salt water and it took me ages to get back into my swim. On the way back to the beach, I saw that I was just behind the front pack and even though I tried, I couldn’t close the gap. Getting out of the water, I felt sick - probably from the salt water - and couldn’t run fast enough to bridge to the first pack.

So I ended up in the chase pack and on the beginning of the second lap, I managed to loose my bottle - unlucky! The rest of the bike went by without any other big happenings until just before the finish a girl crashed right next to me. I was really happy when I was safely off the bike then.

But my transition wasn’t the best one I’d ever had, so I ended up chasing the girls from my pack for the entire run. Because it was so hot, the run was basically a struggle from water station to the next, and then it was over. I finished 19th, not the best race of my life, but a great experience :)

And on Sunday we all raced again in the relays, they were great fun - even though they were way to short! In the evening there was still the afterparty, where I got to know all the people on the team better. The next morning we all headed back home - away from the beautiful sunshine to England weather ;), but with some great experiences and having met some interesting people.

© Sophia Saller 2016. All rights reserved. Impressum