My first triathlon of 2010 is done! I arrived in Kelowna on Friday afternoon and on Saturday I took off to Oliver to test out the lake (and my wetsuit). Package pick up and the pre-race meeting was that afternoon. The meeting was pretty straight forward and similar to last year. The one big difference was that they were going to have the sprint athletes go off ahead of the Olympic athletes. Then it was time for dinner and back home to bed in Kelowna.
Sunday morning I was up early….4 or 4:30 am I believe? I woke up, showered, had some breakfast, packed up the car and took off to Oliver before 6 am. I got there soon after transition opened and I took my time getting set up. There was no one else set up on my rack yet so I grabbed the outside spot, lay down my new transition mat and put out bike shoes, socks, helmet, run shoes, visor, Garmins and nutrition. Once everything was out I ate a banana and hit up the bathrooms. After getting back to transition and finding a spot to sit they made an announcement that they Olympic athletes were in fact going to start ahead of the sprint athletes and that we had 30 minutes to race start. Really? I decided to start putting on my wetsuit as it generally takes about 15 minutes to get it on and adjusted properly. Many thanks to the girl on my bike rack in the Speed Theory gear from Vancouver who volunteered to help me adjust it in the shoulders! I looked at the bike rack and there was a girl who arrived last minute and had somehow or other squeezed her bike in at the end of the rack, making it really crowded there. There was a big gaping hole in the rack with plenty of room for a bike in the center of it, but I guess position was more important to her than room. Grr… Oh well, not much I could do about it. I downed a Strawberry Banana Gu, drank some water, and headed down to the lake to warm up.
The water was measured at 15C the evening before but it felt pretty nice and warm out. I dunked my head, swam around a bit to get used to the water temperature and made sure to take care of that final nervous pee. We were all called over to the lake edge for a quick briefing, then it was time to go! My goal for the swim was to have a happy swim. I decided to take a chance and start swimming with the pack in the hopes that I may be able to draft off some folks. People spread out pretty well so apart from a bit of touching there wasn’t a lot of contact. Every time I would breathe to the left I would see the same person in a green cap next to me. It felt kind of nice to have people in front and to my left and right as I think it helped me stay on course a bit easier. My swimming felt effortless and I swam past the four buoys on the way out in what felt like no time. As we turned around to come back we all dispersed quite a bit more and I was more on my own. I looked up and was surprised to see the number of people behind me. Last year I think I was definitely more at the back of the pack. I completed the first loop, ran out on the beach, around a buoy and back into the water. Again on the way out I found a few people to hang out with. I felt great the entire swim. I didn’t swallow too much water, my chest didn’t tighten up. Goal achieved!
This picture cracks me up! Check out that look on my face! I don’t look very happy, but trust me, I was. I was trying to unzip my suit and get the arms off in preparation for the wetsuit strippers. Yes!! They had wetsuit strippers this year. Thanks so much guys! I hit the timing mat and looked up at the clock. 35 minutes and change. That’s in line with what I’ll swim 1500 m in the pool at, plus it was 3 minutes faster than last year.
Swim – 1500 m – 35:18
107 out of 144