Report on Coolangatta Gold event on the Gold Coast

9th November 2010

Chris Moors has provided us with this exclusive report on his participation in the gruelling Coolangatta Gold event held on the Gold Coast on Sunday 7th November.

The 2010 Coolangatta Gold race kicked off at 8:20am for the Open Men’s division, with Masters, Under 19s and teams heading off earlier. Organisers made a call on the tricky surf conditions and decided on a water start out the back of the break. Due to road works in Surfers, the course was altered so the start and finish was at Kurrawa with the distance made up by heading up to Surfers and back. This added another aspect to the race as you passed others coming back from the turn around and was mentally challenging on the final run having to pass the finish line and then go back to it. For logistical reasons I was happy with Kurrawa being the start and finish because it’s the club I have joined.

The paddle down to the turning mark at Northcliffe was high intensity and high pace, with runners assisting on the way down. I was happy with the light head wind on the way back to Coolangatta. My ski start was not ideal as I found myself mid-field and didn’t make the front pack. I worked my way to the front of the second pack, then settled into a comfortable wash riding pattern. I came off the ski in 22nd place, feeling reasonably fresh.

Had a good crack at the swim, dived in at the beginning with a fellow training partner who was a known strong swimmer and hung onto his feet most of the way. The swim leg felt long, particularly in the latter stage. I came out of the swim in 12th place.

I picked up one position in the beach run to the board leg. Mentally I struggled on the board with an average start, negotiating the waves and then struggled for rhythm once I was in clear water. I managed to maintain my position and caught a good wave at the end.

I began the final beach run in 11th place, feeling reasonable, and started really hitting the sugar in the first stages. I made up a place about 5km into the run and another about 3km from the end. Running conditions for the last leg were very hot.

I picked up most ground in the swim and run legs, getting overall the 10th fastest time in the swim and 5th in the run for Open Men.

Overall I finished 9th and achieved my goal of top-ten and won a couple of dollars in the process. Upon completion I was uncomfortably hot and shattered, however, the Kurrawa recovery team was great with food and ice baths on offer. By the evening I was feeling better - definitely not 100% - but partied into the night celebrating our efforts.

Nutrition and hydration were big factors in the race and I planned it out with help and advice from my coach Phil Clayton. The morning began at 5:30am to give time for a large breakfast of proteins and carbohydrates to settle. I had a team of handlers who raced around the course on scooters to assist in passing me gear, food, drinks and race progress updates. I took a camel back for the ski, had carbohydrate gels with fluid at each transition, a small protein shake at the board paddle, jelly beans and flat Coke during the final run. However, even doing my best to replace fluids and experiencing stitch in the swim leg, after the race I weighed in at the lightest I have been for years.

In writing this today I’m feeling sore and ready for a nap. Overall I’m stoked with the race and the general feeling of accomplishment.