By Brad Culp on 04/05/10 at 2:28 am
Spain’s Javier Gomez, who finished second in the 2009 ITU World Rankings, will make his 2010 season debut this Saturday at the Dextro Energy Triathlon ITU World Championship Seoul. The Spaniard had originally planned on competing in the Mooloolaba World Cup and the Series opener in Sydney, but a minor hip injury forced the former world champion to cut back his run training and delay the start of the season. We caught up with Gomez during his final preparation for the big event in Seoul to find out what he expects out of himself this weekend and the rest of the season.
What was the issue with your hip, and how much were you forced to cut back your training?
I went to different doctors to Brisbane and Noosa and they are not completely sure about what I had. Most of the tests showed that things were pretty normal. It looks like it was a problem in the piriformis muscle. I missed a few weeks of training, especially run training, so my fitness will not be the best for Seoul.
What are your expectations heading into Seoul? Do you feel any pressure to score championship points after missing out on the race in Sydney?
I was debating for a while whether or not to compete in Seoul. I have been training in Australia, and Seoul is kind of on the way back home, so my coach and I think it will be good to be on the starting line. I have no high expectations for race day and would just like to go out and enjoy the race. We are already thinking of Madrid. I want to be fit and ready to try to win there. After seven months without racing, it’s going to be good to do one race before Madrid.
I know I won’t get many points this weekend and the goal is not scoring points. The goal is to have four good races afterward this one in Madrid, Hamburg, London and Budapest. I know it won’t be easy and that I can’t have any bad days, but I believe that if I’m healthy, I can manage to race well at all four.
Does it take any pressure off having Alistair Brownlee out until Madrid? Do you think you’d be feeling more pressure to score points early on in the season if he were competing?
It would have been great to get points at the beginning of the season. I was feeling great some weeks before Sydney and I was looking forward to the race, but unfortunately, I got injured. So I faced the problem and I didn’t get stressed about it. There are so many races in the season and so many seasons in your career. I don’t have more or less pressure if Alistair is racing or not, I just try to get myself ready to give my best when I compete. But it’s good that he is recovering well from his injury and coming back in Madrid. He is the world champion and I think we all want to race against the best.
Be sure to tune into triathlonlive.tv on May 8 to catch all the racing action from Seoul as it happens. The women’s event kicks off at 10am local time with the men to follow at 1pm.
Find more details about this event - 2010 Dextro Energy Triathlon - ITU World Championship Series Seoul