I have never participated in a Duathlon before.
Throwing caution to the wind, I figured what the heck, might as well give it a try.
I arrived down at the Bath house at White Rock Lake about an hour before the race. I did a race day entry. Then I put my bike in transition and headed out for a two mile warm up jog. It was 15 minutes before the start when I returned from my warm up. In my car I had a brand new pair of Brooks T6 racing flats. And when I say brand new, I mean I that opened the box; took the shoes out of the box; pulled the packing paper out of the shoes; and put those shoes on my feet. I know that this is not the recommended procedure for breaking in new shoes. But lets face it, it was about 100 meters jog up to the start. Plenty of time to get those new shoes broken in! Ha!
And we were off! The format was 2 mile run, 15K bike, 2 mile run. I jumped out with leaders and felt very comfortable. I had to hold back in fact. At 800 meters, my old running buddy Tom happened to be watching the race so he yelled at me as I went by with the lead group. Just before the 1 mile turn I passed the lead runner, and found myself running solo in the lead. Given that I am not very good on the bike, I figured I needed all the lead I could muster in the run. As I came back by my buddy Tom I saw the look of shock and horror on his face, seeing me in the lead! I held my lead into transition, where I slammed on my lid, grabbed the bike and took off.
Leading the race coming into transition 1.
I was still in first place coming out of the transition. It was not long before the first bike caught me. I knew that guy was going to smoke me on the bike. He was second in the run coming in, so it was going to be unlikely that I could catch him in run 2. It was several miles before the second bike got me. Another mile for the third bike. I held that until about 1.5 miles from the finish, when two more went by me. I held sixth place coming into Transition 2. Dumped the helmet and bike and was in sixth out of T2.
Coming into Transition 2. The bike segment would be easier if it was not for the requirement to ride the bike!
Those last two dudes that passed me were about 50 meters ahead of me. I caught them in about 600 meters or so. The third place guy was about 50 meters ahead. It took me all the way to the turn to catch him. But this guy was tough! We ran shoulder to shoulder for a couple of hundred meters before I got clear of him. At the 90 degree turn at Dreyfuss House, I put the hammer down in an effort to break him. But he hung on and after the turn he put in a surge. I had nothing more. It was 400 meters up a slight hill to the finish where I hung on for fourth place overall. It turns out that I had the second fastest split on the second run, missing first place by 2 seconds!
And I was first overall masters.
Not bad for a rookie.
I gotta learn to ride that bike.
All views expressed in this post and on this blog are my own. None of my comments should be construed to represent the views of others including and not limited to: BMC Software Inc., Corel Corporation, Dun and Bradstreet and AC Nielsen. Copyright Chris Hughes 2004-2012