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Buster Britton Memorial Triathlon - TriathlonSprint

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Pelham, Alabama
United States
Team Magic
75F / 24C
Total Time = 1h 08m 47s
Overall Rank = 25/390
Age Group = M 25-29
Age Group Rank = 3/35
Pre-race routine:

Woke up at 4:30 had 2 pieces of PB toast and some fruit. Made it down to the race venue around 6:00 and picked up my packet and set up transition. Nothing to worry about; just wanted to have a good time
Event warmup:

Here is where things took a turn for the worse. Just before 7:00 am it began raining. And I don't mean a few was an absolute downpour. I can only think of one time in my life where I have been outside in a worse storm. Well it wasn't letting up. Within 5 minutes there was no sense in trying to keep anything dry, everything was soaked. The RD announced that they were going to delay the start of the race by 15-20 minutes because of the lightening. Well 15-20 minutes later, they are considering a duathlon format. No thanks. I don't want to risk any injury for a race this small. The last thing I need to do is go all out for one mile and screw something up. If the race comes to that, I will pack up and volunteer. However, I knew my parents were on their way so I kinda had to wait it all out.

Around 8:00 the weather began to cooperate and they announced the race was back on in the normal format. Sweet! Still I wasn't excited about racing on soaked roads and in wet shoes. Finally, I made my way to the beach and got in the water for a few warmup strokes.
  • 06m 41s
  • 400 yards
  • 01m 40s / 100 yards

Start was time trial fashion every 3 seconds. I had estimated my time for the race was 6:40. Heh. Boy were their some slow swimmers that mis-estimated their times. I have never caught so many so quick. My plan was to go as hard as I could for the first 50, then settle into a pace and find feet. The first 50 went really well as I passed about 10 people. I was really good at rounding the buoys as there was no log jam there.

For the first time in my life, I swam over people. Sorry. It happened twice. I wasn't about to go around them so I went right through the middle and basically over the top. I felt bad for a brief moment. I even looked back to make sure bubbles weren't surfacing.

What would you do differently?:

Nothing. I hit my time. I heard a number of people comment that the course was long. Looking at my splits I can help but to agree. I was really pushing it out there and surprised I only averaged 1:40/100. Oh well, it was a good swim.
Transition 1
  • 01m 53s

Great transition. 4th fastest in my AG. Average transition time was 3:11 and I was only 10s slower than the winner.

When you exited the water you had a 20y beach run to three sets of stairs. I passed 2-3 people right here and flew up the stairs. My bike was rack on the end so it was easy to grab.

The funny part was that when I grabbed my helmet it just dumped water on my head.
What would you do differently?:

Cut corners in transition. They had it set up where you ran up the left side to your rack and ran out the right side. I was racked on the far right. I should have just cut down the right side to my rack to save a few seconds. Overall it was on of my best.
  • 37m 1s
  • 12.6 miles
  • 20.42 mile/hr

As mentioned, the roads were soaked and to make matters worse the course was full of winding descents. I spent the first few miles settling into a comfortable race pace. My plan was to go as hard as I could on the bike but my concern was the wet roads. I pushed the hills hard out to the first turnaround. When I saw the leaders coming back, I had a good indication of where I stood in the race.

My race plan was to push it at mile 6 and then again at 9. I hit mile 6 at the base of the hill and blasted pass people. I was still feeling good at the top and decided to get aggressive on the downhill. Gulp. Wet roads, hard turns, carbon brakes = HR through the roof. But it worked. I was gaining confidence in my cornering. Now I set my sites on picking off people.

At mile 9, I just dropped the hammer and went. By mile 10 it was like people were standing still and I felt good. The final .5-.75 miles back to transition is up hill so I got out of the saddle and just pushed. When I could see transition, I settled down my HR, got my feet out of the saddle and knew that I was having a good race
What would you do differently?:

Push it more. I had plenty in the tank. Never got passed on the bike!
Transition 2
  • 00m 59s

I wasn't about to try the flying dismount with wet shoes. Instead, I am really good and hopping off the bike and hitting the brakes right at dismount line. I have been testing a new transition theory and executed it flawlessly this weekend. I just pick up the bike and run. I find it much quicker than worrying about steering it. I instantly caught 2 people here.

I put on my shoes and they were soaked, grabbed my visor and I was out.
What would you do differently?:

Nothing. 31st fastest t2. Avg t2 1:40
  • 22m 14s
  • 3 miles
  • 07m 25s  min/mile

The plan all along was to have a killer swim and bike then just hold on for 3 miles. I knew this would be my weakness, I hadn't done any speed work in forever and my running volume is down due to an injury. If I felt pain from my IT bands, I was to shut it down immediately.

I came out of T2 and saw my parents, I told them to hold on that I was having my best race. I went out hard. And this course had more hills than it did two years ago.

I hit mile 1 at about 7:30 and still hadn't been caught. I could hear a pack of wolves behind me and I was trying to power it up the hills. The second place female caught me on a hill and I tried to go with her. At the turnaround I saw the wolves and thought...crap there are some people my age right on my heels.

I hit the downhills as hard as my body would let me. Mile 2 was just over 7:00. Then I was caught. A small peloton of runners came by me. I was starring at every left calf. Whew...they were younger. I hit the final half mile and I was completely out of gas. There was nothing. I could hear others kicking behind me but I was unable to pick it up.

Then I was passed by some one in my age group. I pushed and the body pushed back. No go. I let out a string of expletives. At this point, I had no idea where I was in my age group but I felt like I was close to the top five. I tried to push again...nothing. I made it to the last turn and had to watch an age grouper beat me by less than 20 feet.

What would you do differently?:

Push the final 100 feet...every second matters in these races.
This was the best run I have put together in quite some time. I am more than happy about it.
Post race
Warm down:

So this is where it got interesting. They posted results and I could see that I finished in the top 30 and beat my time by nearly 5 minutes on a more difficult course. I was more than pleased with that. I frequently race with a guy I went to high school with, so I found him and told him that I think he pulled 3rd in the AG. He was stoked but he tells me that he thinks he got called for drafting (he was being blocked and didn't drop back). Sure enough, 2:00 penalty dropped him behind me.

Then the age grouper that passed me in the last half mile? Well he started about 20 spots ahead of me in the swim. The time in which he beat me was less than the time in which he started ahead of me. So I slid into 3rd place. Talk about a surprise! My first hardware!!!!

Note: I need to remember to push it 100% for 100% of a sprint race. I only beat 4th place by HALF of a second. That is why you sprint the last 25-50 meters of EVERY race. Had I let up on more inch, he would have taken the spot.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

Focusing on endurance rather than speed? Dry roads? This was a B race and for fun.

Event comments:

Team Magic puts on great races. I have raced with them nearly 10 times and I am amazed at how easy things flow. Even with the rain and storms, they had a contingency plan and the athletes best interest. I HIGHLY recommend doing any of their races. They know what they are doing.

Last updated: 2008-05-27 12:00 AM
00:06:41 | 400 yards | 01m 40s / 100yards
Age Group: 6/35
Overall: 50/390
Performance: Good
Suit: None
Course: Rectangular clockwise loop
Start type: Wade Plus: Shot
Water temp: 83F / 28C Current: Low
200M Perf. Good Remainder: Good
Breathing: Good Drafting: Bad
Waves: Navigation: Good
Rounding: Good
Time: 01:53
Performance: Good
Cap removal: Good Helmet on/
Suit off:
Wetsuit stuck? No Run with bike: Yes
Jump on bike: Yes
Getting up to speed:
00:37:01 | 12.6 miles | 20.42 mile/hr
Age Group: 2/35
Overall: 17/390
Performance: Good
Wind: Little
Course: Out and back on a winding, hilly state park road.
Road: Smooth Wet Cadence:
Turns: Average Cornering: Average
Gear changes: Good Hills: Good
Race pace: Comfortable Drinks: Just right
Time: 00:59
Overall: Good
Riding w/ feet on shoes Good
Jumping off bike Good
Running with bike Good
Racking bike Good
Shoe and helmet removal Good
00:22:14 | 03 miles | 07m 25s  min/mile
Age Group: 7/35
Overall: 53/390
Performance: Good
Course: Out and back on paved road with plenty of hills
Keeping cool Good Drinking Not enough
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Good
Mental exertion [1-5] 3
Physical exertion [1-5] 4
Good race? Yes
Course challenge Just right
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? Yes
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks? Yes
Post race activities: Good
Race evaluation [1-5] 5

2008-06-16 9:43 AM

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Nashville, TN
Subject: Buster Britton Memorial Triathlon

2008-06-16 10:23 AM
in reply to: #1468701

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Subject: RE: Buster Britton Memorial Triathlon
Congrats on the hardware!!! It's so easy to  mentally give in at the end of these races but you are right..every second does count. How pissed would you have been if you had finished 4th by 1 or 2 seconds?
2008-06-16 10:57 AM
in reply to: #1468701

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Extreme Veteran
Subject: RE: Buster Britton Memorial Triathlon
You tell such good stories (not as good as the birds though). Nice job!  And definitely nice hardware. 
2008-06-16 11:42 AM
in reply to: #1468701

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Subject: RE: Buster Britton Memorial Triathlon
You rock my socks.
2008-06-16 12:38 PM
in reply to: #1468701

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Subject: RE: Buster Britton Memorial Triathlon
Congrats! This race was my nephew's first tri, and it sounds like the conditions were challenging. You smoked it!
2008-06-16 12:45 PM
in reply to: #1468701

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Subject: RE: Buster Britton Memorial Triathlon
Nice race, especially considering the conditions.  It is so hard to stay mentally prepped when you are ready to go at one point in time and you have to delay.  Congrats on the hardware.  That is always fun!

2008-06-16 2:23 PM
in reply to: #1468701

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Subject: RE: Buster Britton Memorial Triathlon

Great Race! Congrats on the hardware.

2008-06-16 2:50 PM
in reply to: #1468701

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Atlanta, Ga
Subject: RE: Buster Britton Memorial Triathlon
Awesome.. Age Group hardware!! Congrats. Obviously you know how hard it is to compete in our peer groups. Fast usually isn't good enough. Sounds like you had a great race. Your awareness during it and adjustments made are excellent examples of what to do. Great race report. Those wet roads would have had me a little nervous.
2008-06-19 1:27 PM
in reply to: #1468701

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Tuscaloosa, Ala.
Subject: RE: Buster Britton Memorial Triathlon
Nice job out there.  Way to push across the finish line.  .5 seconds.  That's close.
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