I just finished the Deer Valley Super Sprint in Antioch (250y Swim/6 mile bike/2 mile run)- what a fun fun race!
I wasn't sure how this one was going to go - I've been training so hard to get my run times down and with this short short course I figured I could really go all out - you know, SPRINT :)
The best part was that my step son was also doing this race. After seeing pictures and watching me do triathlons he's become interested so I signed him up for this one thinking it would be a great 'first time' race.
I have to say, that the organizers of this race weren't that 'organized'. The race was supposed to start at 9:00 so we go there the 'standard' one and a half hours early (7:30). Only to be the very first people there. There was no sign of any race anywhere! I double checked all my info, looked over the map several times and confirmed that, yes, this is where we were supposed to be - so we waited. Finally about 8:00 someone showed up and started directing folks. Participants started setting up the bike racks, etc while the race director and another volunteer checked people in. We wandered over, picked up our race numbers and then, when they finally had the bike racks up, set up transition.
Then we waited, and waited, and waited. Everyone was friendly and relaxed so it really made for a nice wait, but a wait non-the less. At about 9:15 they finally shouted 'We're going to start, everyone head to the pool!'. And so we did.
This race had a short course and a long course for the kids so they were the first two 'waves'. It was so much fun to watch the itty bitty guys swim in the pool, then run to the transition 'tri' mom and dads cheering, leading and sometimes, pushing them along. Then it was finally time for our race. The director called out - "wave 0! Short course wave 0!" and nearly everyone on the desk said - huh?!
There had been so explanation of the way the waves were going to be handled and most had no idea if they were in wave 0 or not. it took a bit, but finally it was explained that the wave was related to your number. If you were 1-9, you were in wave 0; 10-19 was wave 1 - etc. "I" the step-son was in wave 0 and he diligently got on deck, then into the pool and before we knew it, they were OFF. Waves started every 5 minutes after that and I was in wave 1, so I got ready. Luckily the lane I picked cleared before the 5 (or so) minutes was up so I got it to myself. I had 1/2 a second for a quick dip before the director yelled "GO!" and my wave was off.
The swim went good. I felt great in the water and had no problems getting an easy stroke and breathing going. It was just a matter of swim swim swim, turn, swim swim swim turn. I popped out of the water just as they sent the next wave in - 5 minutes for 250 yards! whoot! Much better then I expected.
From there it was an easy run down to the transition. I was a little surprised to see (I) there still in transition. I had seen enough to know he was struggling on the swim but had expected him to be long gone. We wasn't. He had really spent himself trying to swim and had actually gotten sick after getting out of the pool! When I got there he finally started changing into his bike gear, but not quickly. I FLEW through my transition as fast as I could. (No chips - have no idea how long I took) and was out of transition before him. Overall I would say I was really pleased with how that part went.
The bike course had been described as 'rolling' and I knew I was in for some hills, but I was determined that this time they wouldn't defeat me. I figured with this short 6 mile bike I could afford to spend some effort on the hills and really try to push through them. And I did! The biggest bummer was that I wasn't able to take advantage of my excellent downhill biking abilities :) The downhills were short and just as I would start to gain momentum there would be a turn. Another disappointment was that I got stuck 5 times by traffic lights. Although there were bike lanes the streets were really busy and a biker had to keep their wits about them. Overall though I was really happy because I was only passed by three people on the bike - that's a record for me! :) I finished the 5.76 mile bike course (it was a little short) in 22:45, averaging 15.2MPR! My goal had been to do it in 30 (12MPR) so I was thrilled with those results.
Once off the bike I did a quick change into run shoes and skirt and I was off to hit the trails. I had really lofty goals to NAIL this run and actually run the whole thing. I'm still doing a run/walk plan in my training but I figured I could push it a little on this race day and run the 2 miles straight.
I started with good intentions. I fell easily into running, following the trail along for a short while and then I look up and see 'the hill'. It was really nasty looking. I knew the way my legs felt and with that grade I wasn't going to run up the silly thing, and I didn't. BUT other then the hill, and walk through the turn-around/waterstop I did run the rest! (I) caught up with me right before the turn around at mile 1, but I was ok with that. I still beat him on overall time - he never made up the 5 minute loss from the swim ;) I managed to finish the 1.84 Mile (again a little short) run course in 24:36 with an average pace of 13:22. Since I had a goal to be under a 15 Min pace I BLEW that goal away.
I had figured - if I finished the swim in 8 -10 minutes, did the bike in 30, and ran in 30 and added a little time in there for transitions etc, I should be able to finish under 1:30 -- my total? 59:44 - I squeaked in UNDER an hour! I was so excited and so proud of me!
If you're in the area, this is certainly a really really fun race. Not the best organized but easy going and fun. I mean, how can you beat watching 6 and 7 year olds do their first tri!? I learned some more about my transitions (like give my feet time to dry before trying to put on socks) and gained a lot of insight as to my limits. It's a lot easier to push hard on the bike when you know you've only got to run 2 miles after. I have a few minute gear changes to make too for future tris, but other then that - I feel more dialed in then ever. And the Step-Son. Well he's not so sure about future tris - the swim kicked his @$$ and I don't think he liked that I beat him. But he's interested in doing Dualathalons and to continue running so that's good :)
Alright - time to get some rest - keep Triing everyone!