Well, I finally did. 2nd place at the Eagleman 70.3 triathlon!
Going into the race I was pretty worried that I might might not make top 5. With names like Bozzone, Cunningham, Graves, Yoder, Marr, Kahn, and Victor Z it was going to be a tough day.
The swim was solid but very long. David Kahn, an ex-Texas Longhhorn ,shot to the front and thankfully nobody else tried to go with him. Graves was pushing hard up front with me, Yoder, Bozzone, Cunningham, and Marr all tightly bunched behind. 27 min later we hit the shore and it was on!
I gunned it to my bike because there was no way I was going to miss the bunch this time. Transitioned well and made it out with the boys! Yoder was pretty much gone after mile one and he established a 4 min lead over the rest of us by the time we all reached T2. We picked up Kahn at around mile 35-40 and went solid the whole way back. I took my fair share of pulls up front and felt pretty good on the bike. However, with Richie and Terenzo in the bunch, I knew it was going to be a fast and furious pace on the run.
I learned a fair amount on the bike course with the pack. First thing is that even with 10m spacing, it is so much easier to ride fast! Small things add up over four hours and watching all the small things all the guys did during the ride and transition were impressive. I definitely learned a few new tricks.
Out onto the run course......we all went and it was HOT! I was conservative the first few miles and positioned myself into third place by mile 2. I came close to Terenzo, 50-75m at one point, but he showed everyone why he is one of the best in the sport. He punched it and I could not respond with the heat. From mile six on it was all about survival and getting as much ice into my suit at every aid station. Mile 8 came around and all the sudden Yoder came into view. It took me until mile 11.5-12 to finally catch the young talent. I only just held him off to finish second. Can't beat the feeling.
Thank you First Endurance for awesome nutrition. You have to try Optygen HP. K-Swiss, Phase One, Matt Dixon, Invert-Align and everybody who has helped me. Hopefully I can carry this new confidence into future races and start racing well.