Topeka Tinman Triathlon - TriathlonSprint

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Topeka, Kansas
United States
Ultramax Events
70F / 21C
Total Time = 1h 04m 35s
Overall Rank = 9/348
Age Group = M30-34
Age Group Rank = 2/33
Pre-race routine:

Woke up at 4:00 am and ate a toasted bagel with honey before heading out the door with the wife and the one-year old. I thought for sure we would run into some thunderstorms along the way to Topeka as we watched lightning shoot across the sky for half the drive to Topeka. Luckily, it all went north of us. It was perfect weather once we arrived.

I arrived at the park and made my way over to packet pick-up, got myself checked in, and then setup myself up in transition. I chatted with my uncle, who runs the race from the Shawnee County P&R dept perspective, and he mentioned that the race organizers had to set up three separate times because the early morning storms kept tearing things down and wreaking havok on their setup.

When I was getting body marked one of the volunteers noticed my shaved legs and asked if I was a professional to which I replied with a bit of a chuckle in my voice, "Nope, nobody pays me to do this, I'm the one paying money to participate in these things." I appreciated the compliment though.
Event warmup:

  • 04m 11s
  • 400 yards
  • 01m 03s / 100 yards

From where they had the waves starting it made more sense to swim towards the second buoy instead of the first as that was the more direct line. My wave was M30-39 and after the horn went off there was a mad dash to the water. There was a bit of jostling for position for the first 100 yards but I managed to emerge in front. I was really fighting hard to stay up front as I figured I had a few guys riding my toes. I truly never slowed down my swim pace at all during this. I thought about relaxing, but the swim distance was so short I just kept telling myself that this was a sprint race, so lets race like it.

I rounded the buoys perfectly and tightly, mostly because I had a clear shot at them. The sighting was great; the sun was high enough up in the sky that is wasn't a factor and the water was pretty calm. I caught up with the wave in front of me but I managed to maintain my line without having to zig zag too much to get around people. I exited out of the water and looked at my watch. Wow, was my pace really that quick or was the course a little short? Who cares I was the third overall fastest swimmer, I'll take it.
What would you do differently?:

Transition 1
  • 01m 27s

I would say there was a long run up the hill to get to transition, but really, what outdoor swim doesn't have a "long run" to transition from the swim? Decent transition. I thought I could have been faster but overall I had the 12th fastest T1 time.
  • 38m 13s
  • 13 miles
  • 20.41 mile/hr

Heart rate was high coming out of T1. I had a difficult time getting clipped into my bike and while I was doing this I had three or four guys from the 35-39 age group pass my while I was doing this and getting up to speed (BTW, I'll reference this age group again, later). That was the last I ever saw of them. In fact, I didn't see much of anyone except for a few lone riders from previous waves that I passed.

Once you got out of the park the course was mostly flat with some long, low grade climbs that were more annoying than anything. I was really hoping for a faster bike split but I did the best with what physical and mechanical tools I had. I also tried to maintain the theme from the swim that this was a sprint, so let's go, go, go.
What would you do differently?:

Be even more aggressive.
Transition 2
  • 00m 52s

I really thought I nailed this transition. Flying dismount and a sprint to my bike rack. I actually lost a shoe from my bike while running with it, but an awesome volunteer picked it up for me and brought it to my spot. In looking at the times I had the 48th fastest T2 time, with a good number of people ten seconds or more faster than me. I really thought I would have had one of the top T2 times, but maybe I spent a second or two too preoccupied with the volunteer getting my bike shoe back to me.
What would you do differently?:

??? Not lose my bike shoe.
  • 19m 51s
  • 3 miles
  • 06m 37s  min/mile

Spent the first half mile fiddling with getting my Garmin on my wrist correctly - initially, I had strap on upside down. I settled into a good race pace I thought I could maintain. No other runners immediately around me so it was hard to gauge how well I was doing. I *thought* I was in fourth place in my age group at the time, but I failed to remember/realize that the three fellas who passed me on the bike were in the 35-39 bracket. Anyway, I was holding 6:50-6:55 pace for the first two miles and then I picked up my kick for the last mile as I used a couple of lower age group guys ahead of me as my carrot. In the last .25 mile of the race I had some guy from my age group pass me. I didn't think too much of it at the time - I was going as hard as I could and I wasn't going to catch him - but it turns out he passed me for the win in my age group to beat me by 3 seconds. I had a hard sprint to the finish and felt very satisfied after crossing the line.
What would you do differently?:

I had a mental lapse on who I was racing against and in what age group people were in. If I was more aware I might have been able to push a little harder throughout the run to make up the three seconds I lost by. I also wish I had gone for a little run during the week prior. My legs felt a little stiff which might be some residual effects from IMKS last week.
Post race
Warm down:

Walked around. Met up with my mini cheering section. Waited foreverrrrr to get the awards handed out. Probably not a big deal, but it seemed to take the longest time especially when you have one-year old that needs to leave (actually, my daughter was fine it was my wife who was tired and cranky :) ).

What limited your ability to perform faster:

A HIM race the week before, essentially taking the week off leading up to this event. I participated in this event more for the fun of it and because of my family connections to the race.

Event comments:

I really like this race org group, but there were a lot of hiccups that were mostly out of their hands, namely the weather. As mentioned pre-race, the winds completely destroyed their finish line set up. By the time people began showing up for the race many of the volunteers were scattered around trying to pick things up and get back into order. This however left areas like packet and chip pickup, and body marking undermanned. Again, not their fault. Race results and awards weren't delivered in a very timely manner today, but I've seen them nail this down well in the past, so I'll give them a pass.

Outstanding communication during the race, which I think was helpful for any beginners out there.

Last updated: 2011-03-24 12:00 AM
00:04:11 | 400 yards | 01m 03s / 100yards
Age Group: 1/33
Overall: 3/348
Performance: Good
Suit: None
Course: Counter-clockwise loop.
Start type: Run Plus: Waves
Water temp: 76F / 24C Current: Low
200M Perf. Good Remainder: Good
Breathing: Good Drafting: Good
Waves: Navigation: Good
Rounding: Good
Time: 01:27
Performance: Good
Cap removal: Good Helmet on/
Suit off:
Wetsuit stuck? Run with bike: Yes
Jump on bike: Yes
Getting up to speed: Below average
00:38:13 | 13 miles | 20.41 mile/hr
Age Group: 4/33
Overall: 24/348
Performance: Good
Wind: Little
Course: Lollipop course on Topeka country roads. Old chip seal roads. Not smooth but not rough either.
Road: Smooth Dry Cadence:
Turns: Good Cornering: Good
Gear changes: Good Hills: Good
Race pace: Hard Drinks: Just right
Time: 00:52
Overall: Average
Riding w/ feet on shoes Good
Jumping off bike Good
Running with bike Good
Racking bike Good
Shoe and helmet removal Good
00:19:51 | 03 miles | 06m 37s  min/mile
Age Group: 2/33
Overall: 10/348
Performance: Good
Course: Out and back. A few short hill climbs.
Keeping cool Good Drinking Just right
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Good
Mental exertion [1-5] 4
Physical exertion [1-5] 5
Good race? Yes
Course challenge Too easy
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? Yes
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks? Yes
Post race activities: Average
Race evaluation [1-5] 4