Santa Barbara Triathlon - Long Course - TriathlonLong Course

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Santa Barbara, California
United States
Santa Barbara Triathlon
Total Time = 3h 39m 33s
Overall Rank = 80/469
Age Group = M50-59
Age Group Rank = 8/41
Pre-race routine:

I had not been to this race since 2012, I like the small town atmosphere and the challenging course. More than an Oly but not quite a half.

In 2012 a friendly bet put Mac's Fish & Chips on State Street on the line to the winner. I was 1-0 in that competition, and a promised rematch had me signing up for 2016. My last time here i was also racing as a Clydesdale and got on the podium. No longer a Clydesdale and no longer near the podium :)

Santa Barbara being expensive as it is, and traveling solo this time, I stayed in Carpinteria a few miles down the road, making for an easy drive in.
Event warmup:

Got there early, checked in, and got a decent rack spot on the end. No bike warmup, but did a couple miles on the road warming up the run. I was wearing a brand new De Soto one piece sleeved trisuit (nothing new on race day....) which I was trying out for a long course race later in the year.

Got in the water a few minutes early as the water is always a bit colder up here. With the wetsuit the sleeved suit was a little restrictive, which I wasn't that thrilled with. Stayed in long enough to get rid of the ice cream headache and get a few faster pickups
  • 27m 50s
  • 1760 yards
  • 01m 35s / 100 yards

Easy, rectangular course. With the cloud cover there would not be any issues with sun in my eyes on the eastern return leg, and wore the clear goggles.

Started on the far end and, as is typical, was nowhere near the front as we hit the water. I made up lots of spots by the first buoy, and shortly found a nice pair of feet to draft off. I held on for a few hundred yards but soon they pulled away.

Nothing much to report on the swim, always feels longer than a mile on the return leg. No idea as to my time as I was not wearing the garmin, but happy with my line as I hit the buoys straight on
What would you do differently?:

Nothing. A bit slower than 2012 but similar AG placing
Transition 1
  • 02m 28s

AG winner went 2:20, so not too bad
  • 1h 44m 21s
  • 34 miles
  • 19.55 mile/hr

This course has the potential to bite you in the ass, there are three decent climbs, a couple false flats, and if you cook it too hard, you'll pay on the run. I had power goals and a race plan but to be honest wasn't paying that much attention. I think the bumpy nature of the course makes it hard to have even power numbers.

The course has a pretty confusing route out of East Beach, then goes all the way down to Carpinteria where we had stayed, and then makes its way back. But it's open to cars, and the pavement is highly questionable in a lot of places. It wasn't too crowded with bikes, and didn't see much intentional drafting, but just all of us riding to the right on the shoulder, well it did get a little grippy out there. I also noted as I came on an unmanned stop signed intersection, with a car turning into my lane ahead of me, that the cars won't know we are "racing." My head was on a big swivel.

First climb was Sheffield Drive, not too steep but enough to get your attention with one of those annoying false flats at the top. Quick right turn, more up, then a steep downhill on REALLY crappy roads. Return to the crowded two lane roads, to the next climb. This is a one lane agricultural road through an avocado orchard, but lightly traveled so there was no traffic. Next downhill had been paved recently, t also used to be a crappy road but this was nice. I'm not the best descender, but some folks were flying. Add a sharp right turn at the bottom I was a bit hesitant.

Turning back towards transition, traffic was heavier. One guy refuse to ride to the right, so a (conscientious) farm truck slowed behind him. In front of me. This happened in Chattanooga as well and is frustrating, nothing you can really do with no passing room on the right. I held back behind the truck, until a girl I had passed caught back up. I toyed with the idea of passing on the left, but knew that wasn't smart. But when she said "you gonna go?", I did. Thankfully it worked out.

Toro Canyon is the last and steepest climb, but not too long. My legs were starting t protest though, and I started wondering whether I'd cooked them for too long, as I could feel the twinges of a few cramps. Guess I'd find out on the run.

The second "doh" moment came as we were coming back into the neighborhoods around transition. I saw a CHP officer and just assumed that was the turn... it wasn't.... as I found myself heading down the north end of a southbound freeway offramp


Turned around, re-caught a few of the folks I had passed, and limped into T2 thinking the ride had sucked.

Was a 3 minute PR on the bike though. The course is basically a lollipop, and I knew my rival was 4 minutes behind. Figured I wouldn't see him on the bike, like last time, and I didn't. So I wouldn't have a sense of who was winning until after the run turnaround
What would you do differently?:

Realized I don't really like this course. Open to cars with lots of intersections and driveways......
Transition 2
  • 02m 28s

T1 and T2 times identical. That's never happened....Mostly because I had to stop to pee
What would you do differently?:

  • 1h 22m 26s
  • 10 miles
  • 08m 14s  min/mile

This is a good run for OCD types. Out and back. 2 miles flat, 2 miles up, 2 miles rolling, 2 miles down, 2 miles flat.

Race plan had me running anywhere 8:45-9 depending on feel off the bike. As I took off I found a comfortable pace, then backed off slightly, as I knew the hills would make the last few miles harder. I was surprised to see an 8:15 pop up, so I slowed a bit. Next mile was 8:05. Duh. I knew heading up the climbs would take care of the pace, and was holding 8:30-40 these miles. I styed in my comfort zone and didn't let it hurt yet. When I reached mile 4 I picked up the effort a bit (but not necessarily the pace).

Came to the turnaround and it was time for a gut check. Was I going to get free fish & chips? Or was I gonna pay. I knew I had to spot him 4 minutes, that would make us even. Anything longer than that was me, shorter than that was his.

4 minutes passed
then 5
then 6
then 7,
and I knew it was over as I had only downhll and flat left. Finally saw him as I passed through 6 ish and he passed through 4 ish

Headed down the hill and just tried to maintain a steady pace. Even though the lat two miles are flat, it's hard because you just want to finish, and you can see the Cabrillo Bath House at the finish from a long way off, so it's a bit of a gut check.

I was happy with my finishing pace as it wasn't too much slower than the first two miles. 7 minute PR on this run course

What would you do differently?:

Nothing. I haven't been doing any speedwork with my coach, and running 9-9:30 ish in training. Running 8:15 was a surprise.
Post race
Warm down:

Stand in the Pacific

Event comments:

Great local race, only issue (and it's a big one) is the open bike course. Not all that happy with that...

3:39 is a 7 minute PR here, and that was mostly on the run. Thanks to Shane MacLeod of Scotia Multisport for getting me in shape for it

Last updated: 2016-06-12 12:00 AM
00:27:50 | 1760 yards | 01m 35s / 100yards
Age Group: 4/41
Overall: 0/469
Performance: Good
Start type: Plus:
Water temp: 0F / 0C Current:
200M Perf. Remainder:
Breathing: Drafting:
Waves: Navigation:
Time: 02:28
Performance: Average
Cap removal: Helmet on/
Suit off:
Wetsuit stuck? Run with bike:
Jump on bike:
Getting up to speed:
01:44:21 | 34 miles | 19.55 mile/hr
Age Group: 7/41
Overall: 0/469
Performance: Good
Road:   Cadence:
Turns: Cornering:
Gear changes: Hills:
Race pace: Drinks:
Time: 02:28
Riding w/ feet on shoes
Jumping off bike
Running with bike
Racking bike
Shoe and helmet removal
01:22:26 | 10 miles | 08m 14s  min/mile
Age Group: 14/41
Overall: 0/469
Performance: Good
Keeping cool Drinking
Post race
Weight change: %
Mental exertion [1-5]
Physical exertion [1-5]
Good race?
Course challenge
Events on-time?
Lots of volunteers?
Plenty of drinks?
Post race activities:
Race evaluation [1-5]