This weekend's race in Abu Dhabi is much anticipated with a high-firepower field of professionals chomping at the bit to charge into 2012. With water temperatures hovering a few degrees below the cut-off, it looks like a good change it will be a wetsuit swim and we have a number of athletes armed with the newly designed 2012 blueseventy Helix. Dirk Bockel, racing his first race as part of the Leopard Trek team, has been in Abu Dhabi for a few days and we were able to briefly chat with him about the new wetsuit.
Dirk, what did you think of your first swim in the new Helix? "I tested my Helix yesterday in the comfortable 19 degree water here in Abu Dhabi. I noticed free-feeling mobility in the arm and shoulder area, which is especially elastic, and of course I was happy to feel the buoyancy in the legs which helped me to maintain an ideal body position in the water."
What type of swim session did you perform yesterday? "I did a 3k session spiked with small intervals--which were completely comfortable and no problem in the Helix. I was a bit worried since I haven't been swimming in a wetsuit in a while, but it doesn't feel like a wetsuit--it is more like a second skin."
Dirk, this is a stacked field and arguably the toughest field outside of Kona - what is your perspective going into the event? "There is a reason I have been with blueseventy for a majority of my triathlon career -- it is the wetsuit that I feel the most comfortable in when I have to race against the world's toughest field. This weekend I will be doing just that in Abu Dhabi. I am excited to start my season in the UAE-- it is always an amazing experience to be out here and I know I am in great shape--so now I have to let the legs do the talking!"