Tuesday, October 07, 2008
Tinley's Toughest Triathlon 2008
October 4, 2008
I woke up saturday morning to a slight sprinkle of rain but it wasn't cold outside; the humidity from the rain would make the air temp a bit more bearable during the race. Of course within a few minutes, the rain started to fall harder and as we were camping, we hurried to get up a canopy so that we could stay somewhat sheltered and dry! Besides Wildflower, this is the only other race that Jay, Sprocket and I camp at. We also look forward to this race as it's a great low key environment.
Before I continue with race day information, let me back up one night; Friday. There were a few of us that had decided to race and camp (like we always do) but unfortunately, no one thought to bring firewood! Well, we can't camp without a fire in the evening, so Matt H. and I and the Brigantino boys trasped around our campsite looking for branches, wood, paper plates, anything that we could throw into the fire pit in hopes of starting a small fire to keep us warm friday evening. We were successful in our efforts and before long we got a small fire started. Quite a few of us racers/campers sat around the fire talking and relaxing before our race they next day. Soon, it was time for bed and the fire was dying out.
So, back to saturday morning and setting up transition in slighty soggy conditions and then trying to get into your wetsuit when you are already wet made for some laughs! I had some time to do a short warm up swim and then pulled myself up onto the dock to wait until our wave started. I felt a sharp pain in my heel as I was walking along the start ramp, so sat down to see if I could find the source. Nothing. Our wave was starting in only a few minutes, so I hoped that I wouldn't feel the sharp pain in my heel during the race (I thought I might have gotten a spinter from walking on the dock). The gun went off and we started our swim. At this race the female and male pros begin together. I took it relatively easy (or so I thought) and was able to find a clear space to swim. A large group of us rounded the first buoy and I was surprised at how at ease I was. I had no idea where I was in the scheme of things so I kept it steady. I could see a pack just ahead of me by the time we got to the 2nd bouy and although I tried to catch them, the few seconds that there were ahead were just enough for me not to. Upon the finish of the first loop, athletes must run around one leg of the omni structure and then return for the second and final loop. The boat ramp is usually slimy and slippery and this year was no exception; I took it pretty easy as not to slip and as I ran around the omni, I could hear the announcer saying that I was in the lead of the women's race! I have led a few swims (albeit in sprint distances) but this was the first for an olympic distance race! Jillian P. was just behind me and I figured as long as I could stay in front I'd be okay. When we got to the second buoy, there were so many athletes that I thought it'd be the perfect opportunity to try an lose Jillian. I took the outside turn while Jillian managed to take the inside turn and just like that, I found myself behind her and trying to catch her feet. My plan didn't work as I thought it would have and now I had to work harder to try and catch her. Within a few seconds I was on her feet and let her pull the rest of the way. I knew that to get prem points I'd have to cross the timing mat first. Eventhough Jillian stood up and took the first step out of the water, I ran my hardest up the boat ramp and crossed the mat first! This is the first time that I've received prem points for a swim!
I was out of T1 just behind Jillian as I had some issues trying to get my wetsuit off. I felt good heading out onto the bike and had my sights on Jillian. She had slowed to put her feet into her shoes and I rode past her. But before we got to the dam bridge she flew by me like I was standing still! I kept her in my sights for as long as I could; until the roads started to twist and turn. It wasn't until the turn around that I was able to see how far back I was (about a minute and forty) from Jillian and how far ahead I was from Kelly C. I rode strong through the up and down hills of these country roads in San Luis Obispo until I came into T2. I started the run on a mission to catch Jillian and to keep away from Kelly! I was able to make about 10 seconds on Jillian and held the same distance from Kelly after the first loop. The run is quite hilly and eventhough I had worked on hills in my training, I didn't quite have it today. I placed 2nd, but was happy with my performance.
My next race will be the San Francisco Triathlon at Treasure Island on November 8th.