Thursday, 22 March 2012

Ixtapa CC - Mar 24


Startlist can be found here

Taking place earlier in the season, Ixtapa will host a Conti Cup this weekend for what has been a rich history of racing here. Weather shouldn't be any cooler however, 35C with high humidity will greet the atheltes when they start the run.

The list in chock full of Mexicans with Grajales and Serrano of mention. Zaferes (USA) and McCartney (CAN) as the gringos presesnt threats starting in the water and perhaps ending on the podium.

Ocean swim for this one can have some chop and current to it so a tactical sense is required. 2 loops, staying in the water will favour the swimmers here and look for Zaferes to lead us on to the beach with McCartney right at his feet. These two may likely have a gap on the field of 20-30s. The chase should include all the major Mexican players along with Oskutis (USA) and Phillips (CAN). With the T1 run being quite long over sand and pavement, 2+ minutes, it is important to stay in contact with the group. Otherwise it could be a lonely 40k ride.

Just 2 laps over this hilly bike course. The route offers the Zaferes/McCartney combo to get out of sight more easily. It will be interesting to see whether the Mexican contingent is motivated to bring the duo back or content to fight with eachother. Athletes like Serrano, Saucedo and Oskutis may look to jump across the gap. I see the Northern allie combo working out, coming off with 1' lead over the chase.

The major question starting the run will be whether or not Zaferes/McCartney have cooked themselves out front. They will have the luxury of starting the run at a more reasonable pacing than the chasers, but all will be revealed over the first lap.

Chasing hard, Grajales, Meija, and perhaps youngster Oliveros will look to close the gap. Keen attention to cooling and hydration are critical here.

In a battle I see the podium as:

Zaferes, Grajales, McCartney

Darkhorse: Nunez (MEX)
New Flag Watch: none


Startlist can be found here

Out of the water look for Rivas and Perez (MEX) to lead a group of about 8 women to the bikes.

Over the hilly ride I don't see a split or break occuring but the weaker riders will certainly gas their legs more than needed.

Onto the run Vodickova (CZE) should be up front with Rivas and Shapiro (USA) duking this one out for the medals.

I like the podium as: Vodickova, Shaprio, Rivas

New Flag Watch: Vodickova [EURO]
Darkhorse:Diaz (MEX)

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