Thursday, July 7, 2011

Captex and Kansas 70.3 Race Report

I’ve got two recent races to catch everyone up on, Capital of Texas Tri (31 May) and Kansas 70.3 (12 June).

I was excited for Captex being it was located in my backyard, Austin Texas. This race was added to the Lifetime Fitness Series. The $50,000 prize purse this year brought in some of the best competition. I was looking forward to racing head to head with guys like Hunter Kemper, Andy Potts, and Matty Reed. Unfortunately the swim portion was a little bit of a mess. About half way through the Pro men’s swim we had a race support show up on a jet ski and route us in the wrong direction. Everyone followed the jet ski except Andy Potts who kept going on course. The long story short Potts came out of the water with a 2:30 lead and everyone else was chasing. I had a great start to the swim hanging on the lead pack longer than normally but after the chaos I fell off pace. Once out on the bike I struggled to get into a rhythm and fell further behind. My run came around nicely though and ended up with a 10K PR. I ended up 20th out of 22 Pro men for the day. Lessons learned, always follow Andy Potts on the swim because he is probably going the right directionJ. It was great to see all the Trisition Area Orange out there and a big thanks to Marco and Lorena for having the TA tent and some beer ready for us afterwards! Congrats to Andy Potts on his win, the guy is red hot this year.

For the Kansas race this was my second 70.3 of the season and I was excited to race. I had a little bit of adversity the month leading up fighting off injury and a chest cold the week before. This race was going to give me a good feel of where my current fitness is at and help me build into the second half of the season. Friend and pro triathlete Robbie Wade ( rode up to Kansas with me, I was glad to have him along as 12 hours is a long drive by yourself. We got to the race site Saturday around noon and got a pre race brick in to warm up the legs. Once warmed up we hit the pro the meeting and then off to get some food and rest before the race. The weather man was predicting thunderstorms the morning of the race so I went to bed hoping for clear skies.

Luckily it stormed through the night but pretty much cleared off for the morning. I got a little warmup in threw the wetsuit on and headed over to the start line for the swim. There was plenty of wind that morning and it showed in the chop on the water. Before I knew it we were off and fighting for position. I lost contact with the lead group pretty quickly and found myself with a couple other guys chasing. The swim was an out and back rectangle. I lead the 3 man group I was in to the first turn and then decided to drop back and draft a little. I noticed we were drifting off course pretty far and actually cutting the first Buoy. I kept waiting for the lead guy to pull right to go towards the other turn buoy. I decided to cut the group and head for the turn buoy by myself. Once I hit that buoy it was back to shore. The lead female pro Leanda Cave caught me with about 300 meters to go and there were two other gals on my feet the rest of the way.

I was happy to be out of the rough water and back on dry land. I grabbed my bike and was off chasing. Within the first two miles Jared Milam went by me followed shortly by Chrissie Wellington. I dug a little deeper and then shortly after went by Jared and Chrissie and then was off racing. By mile 5 I had caught Leanda Cave and kept moving. I knew there was a couple fast bike/run guys behind me in Robbie Wade and Matt Russell, this kept me motivated to keep riding hard. I spent most the bike going back and forth with Leanda (very impressive biker) and Jared. I came off the bike feeling pretty good and excited to try and run down some people.

The plan was running 6 minute miles from the start to mile 10 and then try to pick it up the last 3.2 miles. Initially on the run I was having some cramping issues but was able to keep my 6 minute pace. By mile two I was feeling good and things were looking up. Mile three went fine and then by mile four I started to fade. I didn’t blow up all at once but gradually my pace got slower. This was probably due to the fact that I had almost no running in the 4 weeks leading up to the race resting my shin splints/calves. When all was said and done I finished 19th out of 24 pro men and was enjoying some food and a massage. My time of 4:17:37 was a little disappointing but once my run is up and going again I think this will take care of itself. Robbie finished the day 17th and we both headed back to Texas that night. Overall was a good race to build off of. Now I’m in the middle of a solid training block with August-October being chucked full of races. I’m looking forward to doing a couple of local races this July.