Anna Meares diary: Back to racing

Arriving in Cottbuss, Germany after travelling for nearly 40 hours, it's needless to say we were all...

Arriving in Cottbuss, Germany after travelling for nearly 40 hours, it's needless to say we were all very tired. When my head hit the pillow that night I slept for 10 hours straight. I awoke feeling wonderful, despite the cough!

Talk at breakfast was about the massive storm that hit last my surprise I asked, 'what storm?' They were just as surprised I didn't know about it. They said it was so loud, wind, thunder, rain, trees bending and breaking...I looked outside at this point and queried. It rained? I was astonished. Something so loud for sure would wake me up - Marks snoring does it at the best of times let alone a big storm. I must have been dead to the world.

A few days in and it was the semi final for the European Cup (soccer) and Germany was in it. Well, that night no one got a good about loud. The Germans won and the noise from all the kids staying in this place. Wow. Screams, drumming on any surface they could find, water bombs out the windows. Our guys were yelling at them to shut up, but it only added to the noise. I think they were still going at like 1 AM.

On Wednesday the race organisers held a barbeque for all the teams racing, but the Aussies were the only ones to go. It was very good. Luts Heschlich (Germany) came and made me blush. If there was anyone that could be titled the greatest sprinter in history, it would be this man.

Luts hugged Ray and felt his waist and said 'Oh you in good shape. I no like men, but you feel good'. Then he did the same to me and said 'you're in much better shape then Ryan', it was very funny! I was blushing and everyone gave me shit for it too. Ah, it was a good laugh.

Race day came about fast. I qualified on 95" today. The biggest I have ever qualified on. But it felt good. The track at Cottbuss is so steep that you get a good run off of the banking. I qualified fastest in 11.41 seconds, only 0.06 off of the track record for women, so I was very pleased with that.

I had Maphusa of Malaysia first up and I felt it was not too much of a threat and moved through to the quarters easily. In the quarters I met Yvonne of the Netherlands, my good friend, and that was a good match up. I won, but I was lucky she was a bit off on her tactics and I had good legs. I made mistakes, but had legs to cover myself, so, phew on that part.

To read the full entry, click here. Also see new diaries D-Day and Olympic journey begins.

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