Race Day!!

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Being able to sleep in until 6am was great, and both Bob and I were feeling well on race morning. The weather looked better than anticipated and we were in at transition in good time.

The transition area was amazing!!!!
Completely undercover in a cavernous shed, there was ample room for the 500 or so bikes on numbered, stabled bike racks, bag storage, drink stations and timing mats. A clean, smooth concrete floor was an excellent surface; numbering and preparation went smoothly, as the event was very well organized. Before I knew, it was time to leave the shed for the first wave, all women (110 entrants) in a deep water start at the dock. Jumping into the water was cold, and without the provision of warming up, floating in the cold, clear Southern Oceans waiting for the starting siren caused many feet to turn white and numb. Without warning we were off, and swimming in the beautiful waters adjacent to the city centre. The two lap course caused no difficulties, and it seemed that I wasn't last, and even 'out sprinted' (in a fashion) two girls at the exit ladder.
Didn't rush through transition - an extra 30 seconds wasn't going to make a big difference if I was organised. On the bike, and out on the bike course! I was already being lapped by the time I got on the road . . . and I was looking forward to getting through the 8-lap course and out onto the run leg. Described as technical, it was a fair description although I found it quite fun after the first lap even though I was being passed by many cyclists from all the waves. As the event was being held in the heart of the city, it was an exciting event with an estimated 20,000 spectators on the sidelines cheering. Thankfully, I managed to avoid aborting the cycle leg with one of the many mechanical failures, punctures or prangs. As I finished the 7th lap I saw one woman from my age group entering transition to start her run. She didn't look as though running would be her strong point, with the shoulders and arms of a swimmer. As each lap was taking me approximately 12 minutes, I thought that it was unlikely that I could run down that difference. Oh well, last in the age group again - but I was really quite happy with both my swim and cycle.

On to the run, I had to stop and think whether I had gone through transition properly, it seemed too quick! In one side of the shed and out the other, over a timing mat, and through a drink station. As usual, I was moving quite easily and had to remember that I planned to take the first two of the three laps easily, and then put it in at the end. I felt good, and steadily passed people, although they may have been on their second or last leg, and started an hour or so after me.

I took my lap times each time I crossed over the timing mat, and this was making me confused. Both for the first 'lap' and the 'second' it was around the 13 minute mark or so. I was running well, but no where near a (?sub-) 40 minute 10k! I pumped it up a little, but was holding a lot in reserve, thinking that maybe the finish line was long - an extra kilometre or so by my calculations. At the final turnaround I saw the not-so fast looking runner in my age group . . . from my inaccurate estimation of when we each passed the same point, it seemed to be about a 3 minute lead. Given the previous splits, I figured I had about 6 minutes to run - but unless she blew up completely and crawled (backwards) making up that three minutes seemed remote.

The finish line loomed too soon - I wasn't able to catch up with the other runner, and was feeling great, wishing that there was another 11k to run. Through the chute and into the recovery area, I was pleased to guzzle bottles of water and really enjoyed the small clusters of grapes. Bob finished almost at the same time, having started 30 minutes behind me.

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  • Distance Swum
    February 17,400m
    October 3,800m
    November 4,150m
    December .
    Distance Cycled
    November 120km
    December 297 km