The wind and the rain was too much and too heavy so they changed the Olympic Tri to a Duathlon of 5km Run, 29km Ride, 5km Run. The rain was crazy at times and the wind was relentless… but I kinda enjoyed it! What’s wrong with me?!?! I finished in 1:43:10. I placed 16/37 (Men 40-44), 108/187 (Men) and 124/270 (Overall).
This is the Tweet I sent Coach Ben the night before the race:
Hey coach, @bengreenfield. Any advice for racing in heavy rain and 30-45km/h winds? Looks like that’s what I’m in for tomorrow. #crap
This was his response:
@brocksky Put your Beast-Mode on. Shed clothes at aid stations as you go if necessary & wear socks to avoid blisters!
Beast Mode! Got it. Rawr!!!! Good advice. Advice that I followed but the weather is the weather and it got the best of all of us.
We should have known when the bike racks kept blowing over in transition (taking a lot of very expensive bikes with them) that it was not going to be a great day to race. The rain kept teasing us by letting up for a few minutes at a time and the white caps in the lake seemed to die down too… but not for long. A zodiac was sent out a couple times to see if they could include any length of swim in the race but the swells were 4-6 feet and there was no way a life guard would be able to get to a swimmer in trouble in less than 15 seconds (which is their guideline, I guess) so we had no swim. Everyone was instructed to remove any disc wheels from their bikes as well. That would have been a recipe for ending up in the ditch… or worse!
The race directors made the call to change the Olympic Tri to a Duathlon of 5km Run, 29km Ride, 5km Run. The rain was crazy at times and the wind was relentless… but oddly enough, I kind of enjoyed it! What’s wrong with me?!?! Is that “beast mode”?
I finished in 1:43:10. I placed 16/37 (Men 40-49), 108/187 (Men) and 124/270 (Overall).
- 1st run – 23:01
- T1 – 1:22
- Bike – 54:29
- T2 – 1:23
- 2nd run – 22:58
Run 1 – We had to start the run on the beach due to too much water in the start area (and some Sprint distance racers were still coming in). After about 600m we were back on pavement and we ran though a lot of big puddles but nothing compared to what was coming. I found my running groove pretty quickly and ran a decent split and felt good (if not soaked) getting on to my bike.
Bike – The first half of the bike course (which the race directors extended from 20km to 29km at the last minute) was not too bad. The rain had let up, so we were wet and windy, but ok. The back half of the ride was when the second storm front blew in. The rain was so hard at times that I was convinced it was actually hail. It pounded on my helmet and stung when it hit my bare skin. Fun! Honestly, it was. It wasn’t fast but after a shift in attitude, it was fun.
Run 2 – after all the rain that came in the second half of the bike, the storm drains were completely backed-up and the puddles on the roads were turning into ponds. Even the finish line was ankle deep under water. Again I managed a decent pace and had some chuckles with fellow racers along the way – “well, at least we’re not hot” and “I’m not feeling very thirsty” were my favourite comments.
I have never raced a Duathlon before and I’m pretty sure this isn’t a conventional distance, so… I have no idea how well I did. Coach Ben said “Nice, beast! Your run splits look solid. I assume it was pretty brutal on the bike!”… doesn’t sound like he was too happy with my ride (I averaged 30.8km/h despite the mayhem).
After freezing my butt off (wrapped up like a baked potato in my “Recharge with Milk” space blanket) waiting for a finish line burger, I gave up on the awards ceremony and got changed into some dry clothes in the ZipCar. It still took me another hour of driving to get my core temperature back up to normal.
Here’s an excerpt from an email the race directors sent out after the race weekend:
What a day that was. 60 mm+ of rain, 60+ k/hr wind gusts, ankle deep water in areas… this was the worst day of weather in our 11-year history. Special thanks to the real stars of the day, our race crew and the volunteers.
I was really pumped for this race after cutting 19 minutes off my best Oly Tri at Lake Miquelon a few weeks ago (after eating out, missing some training, sleeping in an unfamiliar bed and having too much coffee and a few beers throughout the week). The week leading up to this race was optimal. I ate well, slept well, trained well, low caffeine and no beer. I was primed and ready. Sigh…
The night before – Roasted sweet potatoes, beets and onion served with quinoa and tuna with spinach. Some blueberries and dark chocolate for dessert. This has become my “go to” pre-race dinner!
The morning of – big glass of water and a big cup of strong black coffee with my standard 3 scoops of Living Fuel SuperBerry (just enough water to make it into a paste) with a banana on top. Delish! I sipped 500ml of Beet Root Juice in the car and waiting for the race to start and ate another banana about an hour before the race.
During the race – One GU Roctane (Cherry Lime w/ caffeine) just before the race started and another GU Roctane every 30 minutes on the bike (Vanilla Orange w/ caffeine). I ate a couple Gu Chomps within the first km of the run and I drank plain water on the bike, and like we said/joked, I wasn’t very thirsty in the rain, wind and cold, so nothing else until after the race.
I’m racing a Half Marathon on Sep 23rd in Oakville ON and then a Full Marathon in Victoria BC on Oct 7th. Running needs to be my focus now. With the Double Triathlon Trip To Phuket, Thailand always in the back of my mind.