Ok folks, less than one week post race, here is the race report. The day before the race, the fans (Leah and Nicholas) and I attended the expo at a time I am not used to being there! We were there in the afternoon and for this reason I was able to meet and chat with Andy Potts and Sarah Haskins, two professionals competing in Saturday's race. Andy Potts was in the Athens olympics, is an awesome all around triathlete, and won Ironman Coeur d'Alene when I was there last year and actually commented on my finisher's shirt. It was great to chat with him and get a picture and autograph. He is a class act. Sarah Haskins was an olympian in 08 and I'm pretty sure she is well on her way for 2012. She won the women's race in Minneapolis this year and is one of 3 women to break 2 hours on this course! I follow both of these athletes closely and it was great to meet and chat with them!
RACE DAY!! This one is an early one so we were up very early, alarm was set for 3:45 am! We were fortunate enough to be staying with friends and not in a hotel this time. I like the "homestay" much better. It was great to visit with such good friends and have such great hospitality. So the morning went very well. Leah did a kick ass job of getting up and getting herself and Nicholas ready while I ate and got my nutrition ready and got ready to go. Got to the race, and after a short walk got my transition area set up and found the fans on the beach right by the swim out. Posed for some pictures with my fans then hit the porta potty one more time. Then I headed out to the beach for a short warmup and a short wait for my wave. I entered in the clydesdale division with hopes of winning it this year, more on that to come! My wave went off shortly after the elite wave, which I have always liked at this race, because I am one of the faster swimmers in one of the earliest waves which means I have transition basically to myself. Swim was actually not my fastest here (only about 30 seconds off). Weather was icky and windy and the water was a bit choppy. Was good to hear my coach on the walkway above the swim out screaming out "great swim great way to start the day!" Got through transition well enough and out on the bike. The bike was ok but never felt super awesome. Roads were a bit wet in spots and I saw a few people go down right near me so I was happy to take some extra caution. Bike split was about a minute slower than my best here in 2009. Not awful but not great, 21.4 mph I believe. Lost my bike shoe on my dismount into transition. Was grateful for the volunteer who ran my shoe back to me in transition. Volunteers kick ass! I've been one and my ass has been saved by one several times, so thankful for them! Headed out on the run and felt pretty good. Got to a little less than 3 miles and started to feel not so great. So....the 2nd lap of the 10k was a bit of a struggle but I pulled it out and finished in around 2:32. All in all only around about 2 minutes slower than 2 years ago. After geeking out and reading a few other accounts of this year's race, I don't feel so bad because pretty much everyone's account reads that this year's race was just "slower". This year's winner's time was the slowest on record too. It was humid and muggy and the roads were wet on the bike course, which is a windy and technical course to begin with. I was not so with it after the race but I came around eventually. Went to get my results printout and saw that I was 1st overall clydesdales through age 39! And as it turns out was the fastest overall clydesdale too. I don't know why but I made it my goal to win the clydesdale division at this specific race after the 1st time I did it. The 1st time I ever did this race I finished just over 3 hours. I'm down around a 2:30 or so now. This was my second race this year and my second podium finish. I'm not used to podium finished. Growing up I was never the athletic type, or at least the good or fast athletic type. I was never good at much athletically, but I still did it and kept at it. It feels great to have 2 races done and 2 podiums and 2 trophies. It feels good to come as far as I have in triathlon. It felt great to have my wife and son there watching me and see me up on the podium. My life is kind of at a turning point right now. It is great to have my family and the sport I love to keep me grounded. Without my family and without triathlon I'd be in a bit of a pickle to say the least.
Anyway...I'm about a week out from a half iron distance race - the Chisago Lakes triathlon. I have never done it. I am going with my dad which I am very much looking forward to. The week after the race, I am going to a training camp in Madison, which is conducted on the Ironman course. Also going to this camp with dad! He isn't doing it :-) simply coming with me to help drive 10 hours one way to Madison and back.
Training is going well, I am feeling good and looking forward to racing again next weekend. I will update again around that time! Take care all!