This is a tough race report to write. Unlike my first Tri, this race at the Sudbury Sprint worked out pretty much as planned. I was a little nervous leading up to start time due to the fact that I didn’t have my support team that I had last year. Three of them had races of their own. Including one of them doing their own first race in the same race I was doing. This year my team consisted of the love of my life. Amy was there all day. She added support and strength when I needed it.
After checking in and being numbered with the big 490. I went off to find my home base for the day. Well, we found it. It was the last spot on the last rack in the last row. It didn’t take long for me and my rack mates to start calling it the suburbs.
Swim: The RD decided to have me swim before the start. So they put me in the water 10 minutes before the first elite hit the water. It’s kind of cool having the pool all to yourself. Not washing machine effect. At the same time having all those people surrounding the pool watching me swim was kind of creepy. But hell, I’m and attention whore… The weird part was that as I hit the wall for a lane change, in lap 4, I could hear the crowd, talking, yelling and cheering. I pushed off the wall, underwater. Got about five good breaststrokes down the lane before surfacing. As I broke the surface and rolled over onto my back I realized it was dead silent. I first I thought “What happened? Did I drown?” Suddenly the crowd broke into a round of applause. Turns out they had a moment of slice for someone that has passed away. Don’t know who. I was a little busy. As I was starting the second to last lane, I could hear the first elite hit the water. Believe it, or not, I was close to the finish of the swim but I started to panic that he would catch me. My swim was not going as fast as my training swims but going under the lane ropes was really slowing me down. Now I was getting sloppy. Pushing off the wall for my last length, I didn’t pull my feet up high enough to clear the wall. I ended up scrapping the top of my feet up the wall. Man, did that hurt. More on this later. I got to the end of the pool and my dear wife was waiting with the wheelchair. The swim time end up being 14:36. Way off from my training time. In the same pool! I climbed up onto the chair and we were off to T1.
Arrived at T1 and everything was all set up. Grabbed a towel for quick wipe down. I reached down to dry my feet before slipping into a pair of socks. This is when I discovered that not only did I scrap the top of my foot, I cut it was bleeding like a stuck pig. Not time to deal with this. I just dried and threw a sock on.
I then slipped onto my bike, strapped on the helmet and gloves and rolled out. Coming out of the transition area we discovered I had no way to get off the sidewalk to the road. Seems they blocked the curb cut with the chip mat coming from the pool. A little quick thinking and I decided to just cut across the mat between swimmers. Hell it was the only way out. Out on the road, I was a pretty happy camper. Nice smooth, wide roads. Well marked out course with gentle rolling hills. The route was s double loop and when I made my first pass, I was feeling pretty strong. So I decided to apply same more power in the second loop. I was a little surprised with a bike time of 41:07. I thought I was moving faster then that. But I’ll take it. Heading into T2 I had the same problem with the curb. Luckily, a volunteer gave me a quick lift up the curb. So I now cruised into T2 for a quick change to the racing chair. Did a quick check on my now bloody sock. Curt Schilling had nothing on me. Looked like it stopped bleeding, but that sock will never be the same again.
T2 went very quickly. Off the bike, onto the regular wheelchair and then slip into the racing chair. Amy held down the front as I slipped in. The chip strapped around my ankle got hung up on the sling my feet sit in. After a fast adjustment by Amy I changed gloves and pushed off. Again, the problem with the curb. So once again I had to cut over the simmers mat. Luckily the swimmers were spaced pretty far apart at this point.
The 2.3 mile run portion was through a neighborhood on a narrow path for most of the route. Along with many ups and downs on short hills and many turns, there wasn’t really a place to get up to speed until the last ¾ of a mile. This explains my 20:14 on the run. That’s worse then my worse 5K. Hey, what are gonna do? I got back to the transition area and some of the people from back in the burbs hadn’t even swam yet. Felt a little weird hanging out and cleaning up before other had even started. Oh, well. I’ll get over it.
On a scale of 1 to 10, I give myself a 7.5 on the day. When it was over I was feeling like I could have kept going. A few adult beverages and some BBQ and the day was a grand total of a 10. Now it’s time to pick my next one and start training for it.