I know I am late in getting a race report up when the official races photos are posted before I post. Anyways, here goes!
I did packet pickup the morning of the race to save a trip downtown on Friday. I was pretty comfortable with the race and area having done the race once before and packet pickup twice before (last year’s race was cancelled due to weather the morning of the race), so I didn’t envision any problems.
I love doing these small races because they are so much easier to plan for. Can you believe that all of my transition gear is in that small backpack? Not having a wetsuit makes for much lighter traveling. Technically, it was a wetsuit legal swim and there were a few people in wetsuits. But for a 500m swim, I didn’t think it would add enough of a benefit to be worth it.
I quickly got my gear setup and got out of the transition area. There was a one cocky d-bag on my rack and I wanted to spend as little time near him as possible. Despite talking shit and acting like he should have been racked with the pros, I still beat his ass. Take that!
The yellow bike is the cocky d-bag’s. See all that rack space to the right of his bike? He claimed that someone else was already racked there and kept anyone else from using the space. I never did see another bike there – before, during, or after the race.
There was another guy on my rack doing his first triathlon. He had a pair of Vibrams on and someone asked if he was going to run in them. He said that he was and that he was going to bike in them too. The person then jokingly said that he should swim in them too to save time. Apparently, he had actually tried swimming in them but they absorbed too much water and were too heavy! How great would that be, wear the same foot wear go all three disciples. haha.
I headed down to the beach and did a bit of a swim warm up. This is the first year that I have started to get in the water before the race actually starts. The past two years, I have waited until the last possible minute to get in the water. The swim warm up does make me colder as I wait to start the race, but I feel more relaxed and ready to go when the gun goes off.
I also met up with Rob down at the beach. This was Rob’s first big triathlon. He seemed a little nervous, but he was going to do great.
And off we go. This was by far the most violent swim I have been in. There was a group of guys who (in my opinion) started way too far in the front. They were in the front left corner, the most aggressive positioning, and were doing the breast stroke before they got to the first turn buoy. Needless to say, there was a lot of contact and fighting for position. I feel that I did pretty well establishing my position and not shying away from the contact.
The added contact did slow me down a bit and I didn’t make my 8:00 minute goal I had hope for, but overall I am happy with my swim. My official time on the swim was 9:38 which included the run to transition. My shore to shore time was closer to 8:45 though.
Rob (on the left) had a great swim and beat me out of the water by about 20 seconds. When I talked to him afterwards, he didn’t have as much contact in the water as I did and stayed more towards the outer perimeter.
I was out of the water shortly thereafter and cruised up to the transition area. It was so nice to be able to get out of the water and just run and not have to worry about a wetsuit.
The first transition went pretty well. The only snafu was that I put a spare tube in my back pocket and as I was running out of transition it fell out of my pocket so I had to run back to get it.
Just like Steelhead, I had a great bike ride. My goal for this race as to push as hard as possible on the bike no matter how much it hurt. I wanted to destroy my legs so that I would have practice running on tired legs. Going into the race, I wanted to try and average 23-24 mph on the bike. It was only a 14.8 mile ride, so I knew that I could push the pace, but keeping up a 23-24 mph average was going to be hard. I ended up finishing in 38:49 for a 22.9mph pace. So close! I’ll take it though.
I love the start and finish to the bike portion of this race. It is hard to tell in the pictures, but you start and finish by going around a roundabout that is lined with cheering fans. It feels like the Tour de France because you are so close to the crowd as you fly past them.
The bike course is fairly flat with a couple of rolling hills. I was able to stay in the big gear for the entire ride and only had to come out of aero for a climb at mile 1 and a second climb at mile 13. Other than that, it was head down and pedal to the metal. I used my AeroDrink for the 2nd time in a race and it worked great (I’ll eventually do a product review with some pros/cons). Between that and a Goo halfway through the bike, that was all the nutrition I needed to get me through the race.
Transition was uneventful. I was shocked to only see a handful of bikes back on the racks. I was probably in the top 10 back to the transition area. I quickly threw on my shoes and headed out.
Remember that bike tube I shoved in my back pocket in T1? Well, I forgot to drop it at T2 and I didn’t want to run with it the entire way. So, I tossed it to Jennie when I saw her as a I started the run. Check out here amazing action shots. Tube in hand, tube in mid area, and off I go!
I’m happy to say that despite pushing my legs as hard as they could go, the run went great. I only got passed by one guy on the run and he went flying by me. He ended up finishing 10th overall and logged 6 minute miles on the run. There was another guy on the run that I chased the entire time. He left transition shortly before I did and no matter how hard I tried, I just couldn’t make up the distance. I found out afterward that he was in my age group and finished about 15 seconds ahead of me. Looking back at the results, I actually made pretty good progress on catching him. He started the run about 45 seconds ahead of me and only finished 15 seconds ahead of me, so I made up nearly 30 seconds on the run – just not enough to beat him in the end.
A great mid-air, thumbs-up shot as I head towards the finish.
My official time was 1:12:11, over 3 minutes faster than 2 years ago! This earned me 32 out of 592 overall and 6 out of 53 in my age group!
After I crossed the finish line, I chatted briefly with the guy I had been trying to catch on the run. He’s got that telltale arm tan line of a dedicated triathlete. Love it. We ended up taking 5 and 6 out of 53 in our age group. At first I was bummed about this because I though awards went 5 deep. I found out later they only went 3 deep, so Whew! I didn’t miss out on placing by 15 seconds.
Shortly after I crossed the finish line, Rob was charging in. I missed getting a shot of him crossing the line because he was too speedy, but he finished in 1:16:11 taking 52 out of 592 overall and 12 out of 53 in our age group! Talk about a great first race!
After chatting with Rob, I went back to watch for my coworker David and his son. David had an awesome race and is showing great improvement at each race this year. David was too fast for the camera as well and I didn’t get a picture until he was already passed me.
It wasn’t long after David went by that his son Connor came cruising in. This was Connor’s first triathlon ever and it sounds like it won’t be his last.
Here is Connor running to the finish with his mom cheering him on.
Overall, another great race. The weather was great and each event came together nicely for me. The races are even more fun as I start to meet people and see them at different races.
Thanks again to my pit crew and photographer! These short races really keep her on her toes. I looked at the time stamps on the pictures she took and the most “down time” she had was about 30 minutes while I was on the bike.
|Age Group Place:||6/53|
|Run Pace:||6:53 min/mile|