Caroline Wilson Rage 70.3 Race Report 4/20/13
I was looking forward to the first long course race of the season. The plan was to utilize this race as a stepping stone and barometer for my “A” race, Ironman Mt. Tremblant (8/18/13). I was given plenty of warning that the course is tough and it’s typically hot. I found both to be true!
Race morning started smoothly. I was able to force down all my pre-race food without much difficulty (finally). Transition opened at 5:30am and my swim wave started at 6:40. This did not leave much time to set up, or to get nervous about the day ahead.
SWIM = 50:14
The swim venue was wonderful. The water was cold, but tolerable. It was clear, allowing you to see the bottom of the lake. With few women racing, the start was not as hectic as typical. I did not get kicked or punched! The sun was directly in your eyes at the start making it difficult to sight the first buoy, but we made a quick left resolving the problem. I did not feel panicked and was able to find a comfortable stroke quickly. Obviously, I was a little too comfortable. My swim was very SLOW, even for me! I was hoping to swim closer to 45’.
T1 = 3:34
T1 was interesting. The road was very rough requiring you to wear flip flops out of the water. I was mad about my slow swim, it was uphill, and athletes from the Olympic distance race were milling about. They had not started their race – no consideration for those of us who had. One gentleman walking backward in the middle of the road became acquainted with my elbow!
BIKE = 3:08:09
The Rage was my first race riding with a “disc” wheel, aero helmet, and specific race plan for the bike. I was quite the tri geek! Coming out of T1 you immediately rode up hill and you kept on riding uphill the first half of the course. The wind was much stronger than anticipated. It hit you from every direction and beat you up. The disc wheel made handling my bike interesting. I was blown all over the road and was white knuckled a few times! The first half of the bike course was a slow grind. When I looked at my time at the turn around, I was a little concerned. I did not realize how much climbing we completed the first half. The return trip was much faster – nearly 25’ faster! I have to say, I flew down the hills. I believe the disc wheel and helmet made a difference in my second half speed. After my slow swim, I was on a mission to catch as many women as I could on the bike. My power meter was not giving me any readings. I was riding by feel. I was bummed I did not have the opportunity to stick to a race plan and there was no data for my coach to analyze…UUGGHH. Coming off the bike, I knew I had 5-6 women in front of me to catch on the run. I was expecting to ride between 3:00-3:10.
T2 = 2:12
I was in and out of T2 fairly quickly, however I was a little confused and began running towards the bike out vs run out…Ooopps! Not sure what I was thinking!!
RUN = 1:56:09
Coming off of the bike, my quadriceps were on the verge of cramping. My first thought was I blew my legs up on the bike. Fortunately the cramping resolved quickly. The first 4 miles of the course was a steady uphill grind. I was unable to get my legs into a comfortable pace and quick turnover. I struggled early on. By mile 5 the course leveled out, but my pace did not pick up. By this time on the course, the temperature was 85 degrees. I carried water with me to supplement what was on the course. I am glad I did. I was looking forward to the turn around point. The second half was downhill and I expected to pick up the pace. That did not happen! All I could do was maintain my pace. At this point in the race, I counted 4 women in front of me and noticed 2 women close behind me at the turnaround. I ran the second half with a target on my back. I thought I was going to be caught! I am typically confident I will run people down, not today! I was fortunate to have a team mate catch up with me a mile or so from the finish line. We were able to push each other, pick up the pace, and finish strong. I was hoping to run between 1:40-1:50.
RACE TIME = 6:00:25
Pre-race goal = 5:45:00
The Rage course was the toughest I have raced. I was disappointed in my swim, but overall pleased with my day. I was pleasantly surprised when I looked at the race results. I was the third overall female finisher. Wow!!! You have to love small races!! This race has shown me I have plenty of work ahead of me to reach my goals set for IMMT!!