I heard various comments from people that they thought the swim was long. My time this year was 12 seconds slower than last year, but my swim times have been coming down a little from last year, so maybe there was some truth to these comments. The water level was lower, but that probably had no affect to make the swim course longer (don't think so anyway). I came out of the water in 7th place in my age group, 5th in my wave (the wave that followed mine had some 43-44 men that did not go off in the 40-42 wave, interesting how they split up the age group this year). Last year I was 13th out of the swim, and two years ago was 4th. Seventh this year was wasn't too bad I guess. T1
I felt that my transition was reasonably smooth and in comparison to last year and expected that the times would have been about the same, all things being equal. However, my T1 time this year was roughly 40seconds longer than last (1:19). I'm thinking it could have been caused by the placement of the timing mats or a slightly longer run from swim exit to T1 exit this year. Bike
: [00:58:38 -- 25.4 mph]
It always helps to have someone to chase on the bike. This year, like last year, it was Gregg Trent.
The bike leg went very well. I felt strong and confident and my legs seemed to have just the right amount of strength for the course, which is mostly flat. I made up all of the lost time on the swim and managed to catch Gregg a couple of miles before T2 to move into the lead position. I maintained a pace of 25.4 mph and covered the 40K course in 58:38 (roughly 1.5min faster than last year). Gregg came into T2 just behind me and we were basically right next to each other running to rack the bikes.
I used Gatorade spiked with Amino Vital as my FRD this year and it seemed to go down well. T2
T2 transition was clean … five seconds slower than last year. Run
: [00:39:46 -- 6:24 min/mile]
Last year Gregg Trent was out of T2 ahead of me and was running in first. I caught him on the small bridge that runners cross as they begin the out and back section of the run course and I kept the lead to the tape. This year the two of us came out of T2 together, so I was hoping to repeat the success of last year's run. Gregg had a slight problem right at the beginning of the run, he pulled up with a calf problem within the first hundred yards after exiting T2. He recovered quickly however and was in pursuit with only a few seconds lost from that incident. At that point we were running in first and second place. We got to the pond and I noticed that Gregg had started to eliminate the gap between us. By mile 5ish he had pulled ahead of me and into first place. I didn't have the legs that day to put in a good run effort, having trained relatively hard that week and going on a 3hr bike ride the day before, so I had to let him go. Gregg kept his lead to the finish and I finished 18sec behind him. We had assumed that we had secured first and second place in the age group. That proved to be wrong however! There was another athlete who was in our age group that did not have any marking on his calf. He was aware of us but we were not aware of him (stealth mode). He passed me at about the same time as Gregg and was running very close to Gregg. I didn't notice him at all. Gregg told me later that he noticed him there but had discounted him as he did not look to be in our age group and had no calf marking that indicated he was in the 40-44 division. Near the finish he sprinted to finish 8 seconds ahead of Gregg to take first. Needless to say both Gregg and I were disappointed about the lack of body marking. I'm sure Gregg would have not have let him go without a fight if he had known he was in our age group.
My run was 3min20sec slower than last year and about a minute slower than 2002. It felt slow and the time confirmed it. Not a problem though. I am focusing on more important races this season and I needed the training miles that I put in that week. There was no opportunity to rest up before the race. It was to be expected. Total
Ended up 3rd in age group and 9th overall (vs 1st and 7th last year). Overall time was 1min 54sec slower than 2002.
1.25K Swim, 40K Bike, 10K Run