16/6/2019: Tine has finished sixth in today’s Challenge Geraardsbergen. Daniela Bleymehl (Germany) won the race with a time of 4:18:30. Fenella Langridge (UK; 4:20:46) came in second; Sara Van de Vel (4:23:45) took third place. The race also served as the Belgian Championship half distance. Tine’s result meant a third place in the BC, behind Van de Vel and Katrien Verstuyft (4:29:30). Tine’s final time was 4:30:30.
Tine had flown in for the Challenge Geraardsbergen from France, where she is completing a training camp in Font Romeu in preparation for the Ironman Nice. How much would those tough training sessions make themselves felt in today’s race? Not too much in the swim, as it turned out. “I started strong and was able to stay with the group for quite some time,” said Tine. “In the end I did fall back, but I do feel that I am swimming better than earlier in the season.” In the bike leg, Tine maintained the 8th position the entire 90 kilometers. Moving up was not in the cards today, “I rode 200 kilometers on Wednesday. And I felt that today. I was able to keep my pace up, but I couldn’t really push hard either. I did run an excellent half marathon though. I felt strong right away and I was able to go fast the last two laps, which allowed me to move up two spots.” That means a positive evaluation, both with regard to her race as her Ironman Nice prep: “I am pleased with this race result. I simply could not have done better today. After two weeks of tough altitude training, you can’t be race fit. But the training camp, including my long training sessions, went really well. Feeling good again, feels so good. I would have preferred my spring to have turned differently. Recovering from my bike crash back in April took more time than I wanted to admit at the time. I was dead set on doing the races and training sessions I had planned. But your body can’t perform when it is focused on recovering. I should have listened to my body. But I do feel that chapter is well and truly behind me now. And that gives me the motivation to train hard during those last few weeks before Nice. Tuesday I am traveling back to Font Romeu to complete the rest of my pre-Nice training.”