I had a great race today. I worked until midnight the night before and only slept a couple hours until my alarm went off. My friend Jim showed up about 3:45am. We looked at each other bleary eyed until Ryan and Sara showed up at 4am. We piled into the car and drove the 45 minutes to the race start. It was still dark, but we set up our transitions and waited for the sun to come up.
We walked to the swim start and got into the freezing (78 degree) water. The swim went well. I was 4th out of the water. Out to the first buoy, I was able to escape the madness of the crowd by pulling just ahead of them. I was right behind the main pack of the fastest swimmers. As we headed towards the beach the current was pulling us out to sea. I swam for what seemed like forever looking at the same coral head! We had a long run to the transition area so the please excuse the long 8:33 swim time for the 400 meter swim.
I headed out on the bike feeling good, but it isn’t my strongest event so I was a little nervous. I pushed fairly hard (for me) during the whole ride. (Averaging 21.8 mph) About halfway to the turnaround, a guy passed me that looked to be about my age. I wanted to do well in my age group so I kept up with him. He would push hard for a half mile and I would stay beside him. We played cat and mouse for the most of the bike. When we came into the transition area, I realized that he was the bike part of a relay and wasn’t competing against me in my age group.
I took off on the run feeling like I wasn’t too far behind the leaders. I passed the relay guy’s runner in the first half mile. I pushed pretty hard and was able to hold off the people behind me. As I hit the turnaround, I saw that I wasn’t too far behind the people in front of me. I saw Tim Marr leading and gave him a high five as he passed. Eduardo was a few minutes behind him running with Chris Larson. I knew that I wouldn’t catch them. There were a couple of attainables behind them though. I picked up the pace and was able to pace one guy with about a mile to go. I was going as hard as I could and just wasn’t able to get to the next couple guys in front of me.
I came across the finish line in 56 minutes and 52 seconds. The best time I have ever posted for a sprint race. I came in 6th overall and 1st in my age group. It was especially fun to have some good friends there.