Monday, August 22, 2011

Race Report: Apple Triathlon

Welcome to the main event. The Canadian National Championships. This is going to be the biggest and fastest field of competitors. I was 16 when I first raced in a Kids of Steel race here, with a mountain bike and board shorts. Needless to say I was hooked. This year compared to the last two, I understood how much the Olympic distance can. As Nathan Champness said after the race, "Its twice as long as a sprint but you still have to go as hard." It was effing hard.

On the way to transition I had to get a picture with my new jersey.

The idea was to beat or come close to my time in Edmonton. I understood this race would be a better estimate of my actual fitness at the end of a season. Because Worlds are in October of next year I will have to tweak my annual training plan in order to peak later in the year.

After setting up transition, I wandered down to the start line and got a dip in the water with Taylor. I have to say this was the most eager Taylor has been to race since he started doing triathlons. Anywho, staging began and I took a spot near the front. I don't swim as fast as those who should be in the front but half the fun of the start is the rush of running into the water, fighting for position.

Who is that dork waving to the camera?

The crazy fun swim start

The swim went as expected. Took longer then Edmonton (partly because I think it is more accurate). I have been slacking off in terms of swim training after Edmonton so 25:18 with a 1:42/ 100m pace is consistent. I just tried to keep my technique together through out the entire swim. After Edmonton, my swim training was maybe one day a week. By no means consistent at all. So next year got to keep my training consistent for all three sports. Sans goggles is, I find, awesome because I can't see anyways.

Oxygen please.

Hopping onto the bike, I knew when and where I wanted to make up time. Also, I wanted to catch some other guys from the Edmonton Triathlon Academy. I picked the right lines to stay fast and maybe in the process cut off some middle age ladies who should stayed to the right. I saw the ETA guys near the turn around on Glenmore. I took the 180 degree turn really well, passing some middle age people in the process. I bombed down Glenmore and hit 44km/h on Clement. The S-bends on the way back to the transition area were loads of fun and passed more middle age people. I caught the first ETA guy right before Knox and didn't see him again. The next one I caught on the way up Glenmore. There were three of us from the 20-24 age group side by side for about 25 m, coming up on another middle aged lady. I hammered and asserted my lead over the other two. I beat the second ETA guy into T2 but the other one, "White TRI Suit Guy," beat me in, though was not too far ahead. It was the fastest bike of the season at 1:04:06 for a 37km/h average.

I may have cut off that lady but she was in the fast line going slowly.

Off the bike, my legs didn't come to me as quick as I wanted. I could see the "White TRI Suit Guy,"not too far off. At about 2k, the 2nd of the ETA guys I passed whipped pass me. I jumped on his heels and couldn't hold. He ran to a 37 min with change. It is hard to know if I would have blown up or ended on the struggle bus if I stayed any longer. I attempted his speed and it was not sustainable. The "White TRI Suit Guy," was still just in front of me and started to pull away which freaked me out. I found my legs eventually and found myself behind the "White TRI Suit Guy." I passed and he stayed on my heels. At the last aid station I waited to see what he did. He yelled for water and I jumped. I left him behind and beat him by just under a minute. I dug really deep and found that last gear.

Digging deep.

I finished with a 2:14:08. I ran a 42:22 10k witha 4:15 pace which was about 6 to 7 minutes faster then last year so I'll take it. Not any faster but the results are still what I'll call consistent on a different course. I finished 7th in my age group out of 26 and 44th overall out of about 600. Not too shabby.

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