Monday, March 29, 2010

Matt's Race Report: Tune Up Tri

Per tradition, here is Matt's race report on Beginner Triathlete. Yea Matt!!

Race: Tune Up Tri
Race Type: Triathlon - Sprint
Age Group: Male 35 - 39
Time: 0:27:16
Overall Place: 6 / 252
Age Group Place: 1 / 17
Comment: Not exactly an Ironman, but...

Race Report:
Ok, disclaimer first that this was a super sprint, and heavily marketed to beginners, but still, there were some pretty fast folks here, and it was cool to get my first tri-award of any kind.

I did this race two years ago with some friends, it's a fun chance to go out and race as hard as you can without holding back. They do the race backwards due to the weather, so it's run, bike, swim. I stayed down at my cousin's place the night before, and brought our two year old to give my (8 months pregnant) wife a break. I caught a huge break in that my wave was the first off, on such a short course it's easy to get trapped behind or around folks.

1.4 miles, Time: 8:37
It felt like I ran very consistently. I think I was seventh or eighth in my wave for the whole run. There were a couple of uneven sections with mulch/mud, but nothing too bad. All the turns helped with seeing the folks behind me. I remember looking at my Garmin coming into T1, it measured the course at 1.3 miles. Even at 1.3, I'll take sub-7 miles any day!

T1: :38
Made the right call switching from cleats to toe cages, fastest T1 in the whole event. ;)

4 miles, Time: 11:37
I passed one or two people in T1, so I think I was in fifth or sixth for my wave heading out on the bike. I tried to get sped up as fast as I could, since I knew the first 180 was coming up almost immediately. By the second mile I had passed all but the guy who would end up finishing first in the wave (but in all fairness, several of the people I passed were on hybrids and the like). Given the number of turns, I was really happy with being able to average just over 20 MPH. It was pretty funny gunning as fast as you could for a few minutes, and then whoa-ing up to do the hairpins.

T2: 1:08
Almost blew it here. Coming up to the dismount line, a volunteer was shouting to slow down, get ready to dismount, etc. I was braking fine, but two things conspired to almost wipe me out: as I came to a stop the volunteer reached out and grabbed my bike while at the same time my left foot got caught in the toe cage. I did a really fun front wheelie with the back tire coming almost all the way around. Almost ate a catch fence, but I got back under control. Whew!
I had considered going sockless because the race was so short, but it ended up being no problem getting my shoes and socks off, and then headed into the pool.

250 yard snake swim, Time: 5:18
I could tell right off the bat that I wouldn't be catching the one guy in front of me, but I did see the guy behind me enter the pool area just as I was getting in. The first couple lengths felt fine, but I was really struggling at the end. The guy behind me got pretty close, but couldn't quite catch me. Hopped out and jogged to the final timing mat.

Snake swims are kind of tricky, since you're ducking under ropes, pushing off, etc. But it was awesome having the lanes to myself. This was only my third swim since like October, so obviously some more prep would have helped.

I knew finishing 2nd in my wave guaranteed I was going to win something, since waves were divided by AG's. I was really excited, since this was going to be my first award of any kind. Some of the younger folks in the next wave ended up smoking the field, plus I found out the guy ahead in my wave was the same AG.

Not sure what happened, but they handed out ONE penalty for the entire race, and it was the guy who beat me, so I got 1st in AG! AND my daughter was there to get my award with me. Sweet.

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