On March 19th I raced the Superseal Triathlon in Coronado, CA. We had been having heavy fog every morning for the 5 days prior to the race so I predicted visibility would be an issue, but we actually had perfect conditions for the race – the tiny bit of fog we had burned off during the swim and it turned sunny.
The 1.5K (0.93 mile) swim was in San Diego Bay. I was surprised that the water temperatures were pretty warm for this time of year – mid 60’s. I had a solid swim as I came out of the water in 3rd place with a time of 24:52. I’m hoping the swim was a bit long because that is a slow time for me, but I was pleased where I ranked.
The 40K (24.8 mile) bike course was 2 loops of the flat, smooth road called The Strand. Just before half way I got passed by a guy I figured was in my age group. I later learned his name was Mark. My goal on the bike quickly became to not let Mark put too much time into me. I could gauge our separation at the bike turnarounds. I figured Mark would get off the bike about 3 minutes ahead. It wound up being 2:48. I was pretty confident I could make up that ground on Mark, but did not know if there was anyone ahead of Mark. My bike split was 1:08:51 (21.6 mph) which was the 6th best time, but it dropped me into 5th place.
The 10K (6.2 mile) run was mostly an out and back type of course. I would get 1 chance near the 3 mile turnaround to assess who was ahead of me. I estimated that Mark was 1:20 ahead at 3 miles. I felt confident I could bridge that gap. Then at mile 4.5 a spectator friend told me I was 40 seconds down. But pretty quickly after that I caught Mark. Too quickly. This had to mean there was someone else further up the road. I had been killing myself to get to this point. I was on fumes, but had less than 1 mile to go. I kept the accelerator down as best I could and finally with about 500 meters to go I passed another guy named Al who was in my age group. I did not know it at the time, but this moved me into the lead. I managed to hold off Al and beat him by 11 seconds. Mark came in 3rd, only 2 seconds behind Al. So the top 3 were separated by only 13 seconds! 4th place was 7 minutes behind. Holy cow that was fun! I had the fastest run of the day and was the only guy to break 40 minutes. My run split was 37:58 and I finished in 2:16:06. I placed 1st out of 33 in the men’s 55-59 age group and 37th out of 643 overall finishers.
Clear Eyes, Full Hearts, Can’t Lose!