Carfrae’s coach gives insight into her preparation and wonders about how Wellington will react to a challenge.
Triathlete.com: Do you think Chrissie’s bike crash two weeks ago will have any influence in how she races tomorrow?
Lindley: She’s such a phenomenal athlete and I think that no matter how she’s feeling, she’s going to be out there digging deep and going hard. It’s an interesting thing, though. No one really knows how bad it is. If it’s just scrapes it’ll be painful in the salt water and all of that but it shouldn’t effect how she swims, bikes or runs.
For us, our race plan has always been to not really think about anyone else because cause we can only influence what we do. We’ve had our performance goals in training to have Rinny at her best. Whether [the crash] effects Chrissie’s race, we don’t know. But were just focusing on ours.
Somebody asked Rinny yesterday, “How would you feel if you suddenly ended up head to head with Chrissie on the run” and Rinny was like, “Oh my god it would be a dream come true.” She wants that. And a lot of people kind of wish that would happen. Chrissie has proven that she’s such a phenomenal athlete but it’s also a mental release not just physical and our goal is to somehow, whether it’s tomorrow or next year, put her under that pressure and see how she handles it.
Triathlete.com: How do you think Chrissie will react?
Lindley: Let me put it this way. I remember as an athlete, I won races and no body put pressure on me and I remember the first time someone was on my shoulder the whole run. She beat me. I just wasn’t used to having someone put pressure on me. Because I have that kind of experience behind me that makes me think that’s going to be the day when Chrissie gets beaten, when she’s got someone on her shoulder breathing down her neck side by side with her. Unless that’s something she’s been working on. At the end of a long day, you’re at your limit mentally and physically and you never know how she’ll react. I have all the respect in the world for her, I think she’s amazing, but that’s something that none of us have seen and that’s something that sure would make it a fun day to have that scenario play out.
Do you think Chrissie pulling out before last year’s race combined with the crash adds to the pressure?
Absolutely. I think a lot of people recognized a change yesterday at the press conference. Who knows what that means. Maybe that change in how she spoke and her demeanor means she’s going to be on fire tomorrow. A lot of people took the approach that she seemed a little frazzled, but again you never know. That could mean she’s going to be more on top of it because she doesn’t know what to expect, but there was definitely a change and I think everybody recognized that.
Then you think about Julie Dibens. Is [having Julie potentially ride faster than Chrissie] gong to be something that’s helps Chrissie or help everyone else? Is it going to spur Chrissie on to ride that much harder and will it help her get that much further ahead, or will it make her push so hard that it effects her run. Who knows? You know it’s funny. Because Rinny doesn’t’ think about any of this. She’s just focusing on her own plan.
Triathlete.com: How has Mirinda’s week gone so far?
Lindley: We’ve had a really specific plan going in to this race. Obviously Hawaii has been the focus of her year. The beginning of her year was different than we were used to but the last three months have ben really smooth and we set some really specific goals for what we wanted to accomplish in our training and how we are going to handle the last weeks going into tomorrow. And we both feel really happy that we’ve been able to tick off everything we wanted to accomplish before getting to today.
Written by Aaron Hersh. Follow him @triathletetech.