SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA (VN) — Kristen Faulkner is finishing the season a little earlier than previously planned as she tries to recover from fatigue after a busy summer of racing interrupted by the COVID-19 infection.
Forkner was due to return to Europe to compete in some races after last week’s UCI Road World Championships, but has decided to withdraw from them and return to the US to start the offseason.
The BikeExchange-Jayco rider said he wasn’t sure if his recent form struggles were a result of the COVID-19 infection he contracted this summer or when he got off the bike.
“This is the last race of the season and I decided to give myself a really good reset and rest because I think my body needs it,” Faulkner said. vero news After road race. “With my body right now, I don’t know if I can do great things in the end of the season races, so doing a full reset and recovery would be better for me right now.
“I need to take a really long break to reset, see a doctor and figure out what is going on. I just don’t know.”
Faulkner was one of the outsiders in last Saturday’s women’s road race at the Worlds, alongside her American teammate Veronica Ewers. Hitting the inner-centre loop faded and eventually finished more than 12 minutes behind the day’s winner, Annemiek van Vleuten.
Faulkner believes she might have faired better if the climb on the circuit had been a more sustained effort, but the punchy nature of the Wollongong Loop was a challenge for her.
“Personally, I haven’t been feeling well in the last few months. After I got out of the group, I just wanted to finish the race,” she said.
“I never really let my body recover. [COVID] Some days I feel good, some days I don’t. Overall, I felt that sometimes I struggled to recover in stage races, and sometimes I caught up more quickly when I was at very high intensity. .
“Whether it’s a time trial or a long sustained climb, I’m fine. On a course with repeated bursts like this, whether it’s the long COVID or COVID I have to take a very long break to come back. I don’t know if I just had to do it or if I lost my strength.
It wasn’t all bad for Faulkner in Australia and she put in a strong performance in the time trial to finish the World Championships, finishing sixth behind winner Ellen van Dijk in 1:26. Faulkner rode her TT her bike a number of times in preparation for the competition, but she wants to do more work for the 2023 season.
“It’s my first time doing a time trial at Worlds and I’m actually very optimistic about the future TT,” she said. vero news“We came here and changed the position to be more aerodynamic, but it was a little less stable, so I think it hurt in the wind as it was. And if I can nail down some of those details, I think the TT experience will be more helpful.”
After a strong start to the 2022 season with three wins, including two stages of the Giro d’Italia Donne, the second half of the season saw a bit of ups and downs for Forkner. Alaska struggled in the Tour de France Femmes and had to abandon the Ceratigit challenge by La Vuelta, citing fatigue issues.
Despite ending the season with a bit of a disappointing result at the World Championships, she sees the good and doesn’t dwell too much on the bad.
“I have to be a little more compassionate with myself and try not to be so hard on myself when I have a bad day like today,” she said.
“‘How’d you do today? Didn’t you feel good? I just gotta roll with it and know that I want to come back really strong next year. You know what you can do when you’re strong?’ This is not a reflection of my best self because I am.”