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Michigan City - TriathlonSprint

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Michigan City, Indiana
United States
Michigan City Parks & Rec
75F / 24C
Total Time = 1h 23m 18s
Overall Rank = 4/29
Age Group = M35-39
Age Group Rank = 2/4
Pre-race routine:

Woke up around 4am. Went downstairs and ate a Builder Bar and made the tea for Beth while she showered. Cleaned myself up and got ready to go.

Drove over from home. Fortunately, it is only about 45-50 minutes from the house. Got to the site, checked in, got marked and got everything set up then waited.
Event warmup:

Got in the water about 20 minutes till start time and did some quick pulls to warm up, probably only about 200m or so. Heck, this whole RR is probably going to be longer than the race itself. ;)
  • 18m 28s
  • 750 meters
  • 02m 28s / 100 meters

So this would be the start of an interesting day. Could barely hear the guy announcing the start. I had my goggles sitting on my forehead and heard him say we are going in 15 seconds. Pulled them down and they were super foggy. CRAP! So I hurried down to the water, grabbed a bit and tried to get it in, no such luck. I stand up and I hear the weak horn go off. "HERE WE GO!" I yelled and took off.

I knew I was first hitting the first buoy, but figured I would get caught. And I did get caught. So someone on my right and he was going just a hair faster than me, so instead of trying to navigate (cause I couldn't see a darn thing), I kept him to my right and stayed right on his left leg (learned from the BT article on OWS on the main page right now). I drafted on him for close to 1/2 the swim.

We rounded the farthest point (left turn #2) and I took an inside line on him and I was gone. I tried to sight a few times, but was not having much luck. In hindsight, I should have stopped for a second and gotten water in the goggs to clean them out, but you live and learn. Anyway, I got to the midpoint buoy on this straight and tried to find the next one and couldn't. So I sat up for just a quick second, heard one of the life guards in a kayak blowing a whistle and realized I was off course. The mid point buoy had floated inside the rectangle a little bit. I finally caught sight of the big turn buoy and off I went.

I had no way of knowing if I had been passed during my little sojourn so I just kept on pedalling. At one point, on the last portion into shore, I did a single back stroke to see how far behind me others were (learned it off the current OWS video article on the front page of BT) and only saw one set of arms, and rolled back over to keep pulling into shore.

I was picking up speed now, and knew there was the slightest of currents coming into shore. I took advantage of it and the waves and really upped the turnover. I always beachhead when I can't get even a bent arm stroke going, stood up and the water was barely below my knees. Ran up shore and crossed the mat. It was then that I realized that I was first out of the water. COOL!

NOTE - This swim was long. I mean REALLY long. I'm normally a 1:35-1:40/100m swimmer. I'm thinking it has to be at least 1.1-1.2k if not longer. Just one of quite a few things wrong with this race.
What would you do differently?:

Make certain that my goggles are not fogged up before I start (rookie mistake) and then if they do fog on the swim, take a few seconds to clean them out which will save me time over the race by more accurate navigaing.
Transition 1
  • 01m 52s

T1 included a fairly long run up the beach. Over all winner passed me going into T1 so I had some work ahead of me. It was really raining at this point and started to put on my sunglasses when I thought better of it. I grab the bike and go and realize I'm back in front of the other guy. Cross the mount line and since it is raining, I just do a stop and mount.
What would you do differently?:

Nothing. A fairly smooth T1 considering the length of the sandy run up.
  • 36m 17s
  • 12.43 miles
  • 20.55 mile/hr

So onto the bike. This is where it gets cool. Since I passed the other guy in T1, I was back in the lead. And that meant I got a motor cycle police escort!!!! So friggen cool. Doubt this will EVER happen again, but hey, you never know.

Cool thing about this is that I don't have to pay attention to directions, just the pretty lights in front of me. Once we got onto Lake Shore Drive (LSD), I tucked in and started putting the pedal down. LSD was super smooth. I think it had recently been repaved. As I'm pushing it, I keep looking back to see how close he is. I'm guessing anywhere from 15-20 seconds back. Ok, let's see how long I can hold him off.

Turned right at Stop 33 and there is an immediate little hill. This is the road that will take us to the church where we go around the back of it as a turn around. Fortunately, I had heard that it was pretty rough. Little did I know I was going to experience my own little Paris Roubaix. Good lord that little stretch was ROUGH!!! But it gave me a quick peak at how close he was. Looks like it is now down to 10-15 minutes. He is gaining.

Back out onto LSD and we have a little bit to go before we do a full turn around. Around the loop and there he is only 5 seconds back. He finally passed me at around 7.5-8 mile mark. By the end, he put about 25 seconds on me. It was oh so tempting to try to stay with him but that wouldn't be my race. I would later regret this.
What would you do differently?:

Don't know if this kind of scenario will EVER happen again, but if it does, I'm staying with him. I would gladly go deeper into the hurt well on the bike if it meant saving spots.
Transition 2
  • 00m 38s

HEH! So, another rookie mistake. I was screaming into the parking lot when I realize I haven't taken my feet out of my shoes yet. DOH! So I reach down and get my right one out quickly. Unbuckle the left one and instead of using my finger on the back, I figure I'll just slip my foot out. That was a mistake. Shoe came with!

Reach down, grab it, now I'm barefoot on a Look pedal (fortunately those things are platforms anyway), with a shoe in hand. I'm still not entirely certain how I braked, swung my right leg over, dismounted all without crashing.

In T2, the shoe came out of my hand. I left it. Fortunately, a nice volunteer grabbed it for me.

Helmet off, visor and shoes on and off I went. I wore the race belt and number the entire race and it worked. I had untucked it on the bike and this time when I turned it from the back to front, I didn't rip it. So that's good.
What would you do differently?:

Remember to take feet out of shoes before 50 feet from the dismount line!
  • 26m 5s
  • 3.11 miles
  • 08m 23s  min/mile

I could see the winner in front of me. He had put another 10-15 seconds on me in transition. He was in cages on his bike so hardly had to do anything in T2. He had a beautiful stride. Come to find out later, he is a rower so he has one hell of an aerobic engine. Turn around on the pier, and I'm coming back in and I see the over all women's winner gaining ground quickly (she would actually have the fastest time of everyone by almost 3 minutes. She was F.A.S.T.!!). We weren't out of the park and she already blew by me.

Out of the park and over one of the bridges. It was still over cast and relatively warm. I felt good so continued to try to keep good running form and push it. Especially since I was in 2nd. Reached the 1/2 way mark and still going good, but looked behind me and could see the guy gaining. Not quickly, but gaining.

He finally caught me with 0.75 to go. Ok, I'll take 3rd. Then another one catches me. Dang, 4th, well, at least I'll get an AG award (more on that later). The last 1/2 mile I should have pushed it more. Looking back on it now, I probably coasted a little bit just pleased with how I had done up to that point. I would regret it.
What would you do differently?:

Not be satisfied and push harder.
Post race
Warm down:

Crossed the line, got my finishers medal, some water and then hooked up with Beth. She was so happy with how I did, and so was I. After a little while, they announced that they were going to do the awards for the Sprint soon so we agreed to stick around. It wound up being a waste of time. See the final comments at the bottom.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

Nothing but my head.

Event comments:

I doubt I will do this race again next year. There are quite a few things wrong with it, and after reading through the 32 reviews on from the 2009 race, it appears they haven't taken any advice. It was not well run in many ways.

- The swim course is ridiculously long. I don't mind, but if you are going to be a USAT race, at least make an effort to get it right.
- The volunteers didn't know anything. There was a "coupon" in the pick up packet so the racers could get some food after the race. This wasn't communicated at check in and we finally heard it AFTER the race and we had tossed the packet with the rest of the junk that was in it.
- The brochure, for the last two years has stated 1-3 OA and 1-3 AG awards will be given out and for the second year in a row, they have only done 1-2 OA and 1 AG awards. Do what you say or change what you say you are going to do.
- There were a ton of volunteers but I would guess that at least 1/2 - 2/3 were out on the bike course, including manning two water stations on the bike course! Really?!?! Is that needed?
- There really weren't enough volunteers around the finish line.
- The run course wrapped around the finish line so there really isn't much room for the finishers and their family to get together without getting in the way of runners.
- Finally, and probably most importantly, this thing is WAY too expensive. $80 and all you get is a friggen cotton t-shirt (not tech-t) and a hand towel.

Looking back at 2009, they had less than 1/2 as many participants this year as last year. The competition appears to be significantly less this year too.

Overall, this is not a race I will go back to. I will also let anyone who listens know to not do it. I doubt they will have it next year anyway.

Last updated: 2010-08-17 12:00 AM
00:18:28 | 750 meters | 02m 28s / 100meters
Age Group: 1/4
Overall: 1/29
Performance: Good
Suit: Neosport sleevless
Course: Large rectangle, out from the shore hang a right, parallel with the shore, hang a left, out further from the shore, hang another left, parallel the shore again, hang the last left and then head for the shore.
Start type: Run Plus: Waves
Water temp: 72F / 22C Current: Low
200M Perf. Good Remainder: Good
Breathing: Good Drafting: Good
Waves: Good Navigation: Average
Rounding: Good
Time: 01:52
Performance: Good
Cap removal: Good Helmet on/
Suit off:
Wetsuit stuck? No Run with bike: Yes
Jump on bike: No
Getting up to speed: Good
00:36:17 | 12.43 miles | 20.55 mile/hr
Age Group: 2/4
Overall: 6/29
Performance: Good
Wind: Little
Course: Out of the park, hang a left and along Lake Shore Drive, a right turn at stop 33, back to a church, around the church, back out to LSD to Stop 37,turn around a small triangle, and then back in on LSD to the park and then to Transistion
Road: Smooth Wet Cadence:
Turns: Average Cornering: Average
Gear changes: Good Hills: Average
Race pace: Comfortable Drinks: Just right
Time: 00:38
Overall: Good
Riding w/ feet on shoes Below average
Jumping off bike Average
Running with bike Good
Racking bike Good
Shoe and helmet removal Good
00:26:05 | 03.11 miles | 08m 23s  min/mile
Age Group: 2/4
Overall: 10/29
Performance: Average
Course: Out to the end of the pier, through the park, across the bridge, circle old down town and back in.
Keeping cool Good Drinking Just right
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Average
Mental exertion [1-5] 4
Physical exertion [1-5] 3
Good race? Ok
Course challenge Too easy
Organized? No
Events on-time? Yes
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks? Yes
Post race activities: Below average
Race evaluation [1-5] 2

2010-08-17 1:51 PM

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Southern Chicago Suburbs, IL
Silver member
Subject: Michigan City

2010-08-17 2:03 PM
in reply to: #3048476

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Extreme Veteran
Montreal, QC
Subject: RE: Michigan City
Great job, Crowny!  Looks like, with a few minor guffaws, you did awesome!  Congrats!
2010-08-17 2:09 PM
in reply to: #3048476

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Subject: RE: Michigan City
Nice job out there! Too bad I wasnt there. I could've totally taken out Nos. 1 and 2. I mena, not that I would. I just could.
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