On July 20th I raced the inaugural Legacy Triathlon in Long Beach, CA. This venue is the proposed course for the 2028 Olympic Games so this race will only grow bigger over the coming years. USA Triathlon produced the race and they poured a lot of resources into it. The athletes were well taken care of and my experience was so good that I have already registered for 2020.
Triathlons often represent a reunion of old friends. The night before the race I had dinner with my friend of 20 years – Wade Grow and his wife Mary and son Darwin. The Grows drove in from Arizona to escape the heat. Wade and I met at Nationals in 1999 at St. Joseph, Missouri. They treated me to a wonderful dinner.
My accomodations were perfect. I stayed in a seedy hotel 1 mile from the start so I was able to ride my bike to the venue on race morning. It was awesome riding my bike past the stressed out athletes in cars looking for a parking spot.
The 750 meter (0.46 mile) swim was in a relatively protected cove so the ocean water was calm. The course was pretty basic – an in-water start with 2 turns. I had a good swim as I was 4th out of the water in 12:00 (1:37/100 meters).
The bike course was 2 laps covering 18.5K (11.5 miles) over a mostly flat route. The only hills were some bridges and entrance ramps. I was pleased with my effort on the bike as my split was 32:20 (21.5 mph). That was 7th fastest and it dropped me down to 8th place.
The 5K (3.1 miles) run course was an out and back on the concrete ocean boardwalk. I had the fastest run on the day – 19:13 (6:12/mile). I caught Wade pretty early on the run. He had a good race and finished 8th. I knew the 2 fastest guys ahead were Jeremy Oury and Mike Long. I have raced Jeremy many times over the years and, in fact, I go to church with his brother Dan. But I had never raced Mike so I did not even know what he looked like. At the run turnaround I was able to see that Jeremy was about 30 seconds ahead of me. Somehow I managed to catch Jeremy with less than a half mile to go, but I could not catch Mike. Mike was 1st, I was 18 seconds behind in 2nd and Jeremy was 17 seconds behind me in 3rd. My finish time was 1:08:35 – 2nd/36 men age 55-59 and 15th/648 overall finishers.
Triathlons also represent an opportunity to make new friends. I had a good time hanging out with Mike at the Awards Ceremony and I look forward to racing him in the future.
Click on this link to see my race photos.
Living the life…