The quick race report is ever so slightly delayed by going back in to watch the final finishers. However here it is. It’ll be brief as it’s past midnight and I should try to get some rest.
I started off with a great swim. 0:58:04 is the official time which includes a short bit of running at least. I stuck to my guns on going into the swim with confidence, placed myself near the front and got stuck in. Had a pretty decent draft for a lot of it with a few sections on my own. Having been warned it could get a bit aggressive out there things were remarkably calm. I like the feeling of coming in and seeing a sub-1 hour time on the clock.
Out on the bike the goal was 5:05 and I got very close. Unfortunately a drafting penalty cost me a few minutes and I came in with a 5:07. Unsurprisingly I didn’t think I was drafting. I had got caught up with a small pace line with a couple of frustrating riders who would surge to the front only to drop the speed off massively. After a lot of coasting and backing off I went round and came to the front. Immediately another guy had followed me and sat himself on the front of me. Before I’d had chance to drop back I was told to pull over by a marshal.
Obviously I did and was told I know the rules and I know I shouldn’t be doing that. Given if we argue our time doesn’t start I said nothing. The thing is I don’t know exactly what I did that made him decide I was the person to punish in the group. I’d been riding clean as far as I was concerned. There were riders around me who definitely hadn’t.
Still it is what it is. After a few minutes i was back on my way and finished a lacklustre first lap. Somewhere around the 100K mark I ate a bit of chocolate Powerbar and the sugars kicked in (or something did anyway). From then on I hammered the bike. Despite the stronger winds I made up plenty of places and some good time. I was pleased to be so close to my target all things considered.
I felt great at the start of the run and knocked out the first few Ks far too fast. Rather than reign things in fully I decided to go with it and see what happens. The result is a very tough second lap! Again the wind seemed worse and certainly made the run out of town hard work. I kept pushing myself and trying to overcome the fatigue and pain in my legs. Ultimately I got back onto a solid pace for the last few kilometres and finished strong grabbing a few more places in the last 2Ks. A run of 3:19 didn’t seem that good though.
So overall time was 9:31:12 which got me 30th overall and with an incredibly stacked 30-34 field only 10th in my age group! Nowhere near the podium at this one! Happy with the time. Happy with the performance at this point in the year. It’s a good start and I’ll be working to improve on that by the time I’ve reached Kona.