Been a long time coming for this one. I have to gather my thought to remember the details. I have to first thank Richard Duquette (the bicycle injury lawyer at 911law.com) for assisting with the race entry.
Saturday was packet pick up day at Paradowski’s Swim & Sport parking lot. Went for a quick pick up, but ended up helping out at the swim cap pick up table. It’s a good way to see and meet people and wish them a great race.
This is the one of the only sprint races but on by Koz Enterprises that allows athletes to check their bike in the night before. This race is a pretty big event and finding an optimal racking transition would be a night mare on race day. Since I live close enough, I decided to rack the night before and jog home and race morning get a warm up by jogging back over to Ski Beach.
Race Day: Up around 5am and out the door shortly there after for the 20 minute jog to race location. Still a bit dark by the time I arrive. Remove the protective plastic garbage bags I placed over the Di2 components to keep the dew off and out of the components. I have given up riding a “tri” bike and have been transforming my Ritchey BreakAway into a tri bike for every triathlon this season. It has worked out quite well, I have not noticed and loss of speed. As I say it is all about the motor! When you arrive early there is lots of time to kill before the race begins or your wave goes off. My wave was 12 out of 13, so lots of time to kill today.
Swim: The swim started on the south side of the “island” swimming north for .5 miles then exiting with a 150 yard (or so) run to the transition area. Water temperature was a bit chilly so I decided on a full suit, I think I may have used my neoprene cap also. Wave 12 was made up of Males 45 to 59, out of 131 in that wave, I came in 9th out of the water. Mind you that was about 2 minutes back on the 1st guy out. This swim was another no brainer so swimming the straightest line was most critical. Transitions are crucial for short races, I was able to make up a few seconds with the 2nd fasted.
Bike: The bike is generally my weakest link. Fortunately, I am not naturally like here. I have to train hard to stay competitive. The bike course was on segments of roads that are part of my regular training and errand routes. It was an out and around Fiesta Island and back to Ski Beach, very fast except for the couple of low bridges over Mission Bay. I was aware of some of the competitors in my age group as they passed me but I was confident I would be able to catch on the run, because I have done just that at races earlier in the season. Only lost a minute or so to the top bikers.
Run: T2 another quick ditch of bike and helmet then off to the run. In previous race repots, I mention the use of Pyro Platforms. These are a must for short tris and duathlon. One may loose a little power on the bike but that is made up in the speed of transitions. I may not be a natural at biking, fortunately I have some natural ability to run. It has taken a life time to become so. My race was really on the run. I had to catch and pass who whizzed by me on the bike. There is this one guy in age group who is a monster on the bike (may be the 2nd fastest age grouper), but on the run he falls short on speed. Bad for him, good for me. I did have a good battle with another Tri Club of San Diego member. He was out of T2 before me and I closed in on him as we were approaching the overpasses. I eased my way to the top as he did, but I used gravity to gain speed on the down side. He did not answer to those burst and that was to his demise. I opened up a bit of a lead and had to press hard the remainder of the two miles to keep him off. In the end I beat him but one second. I have lost a podium position by less than one second the last time I raced here.
Results: I was hope for a top 8 finish but happy with my 4th in age group. The top three aged up this year, they are youngsters. They have beaten me at earlier races this year, so I kind of know where I stand before the race even start. Overall came in 37th (time of 58:55) out of 1484 finishers. Garmin Connect GPD data contains combined bike and run information.
San Diego is a great place to live and race. World class athletes at every event. Once can only do their best and not worry about the competition.
As you can see images courtesy of Opix Photography.