With this race being the first one of the season, I was a little anxious in the week leading up (a little, but not too much). I did reduce training a bit a few days before the race, but otherwise kept things pretty similar to regular training. Obviously, I had to show up to the race cleanly shaven (for obvious aero benefits). I also had to try on my new kit (which came the day before the race), so I did a bit of multi tasking...
|Ya, that's a straight razor...|
After a pretty routine race morning (which went nice and smooth), I jumped into the water for my first open water swim of the season. The water was very comfortable, and my stroke felt good in warm up. With the likes of Derek Quick in the race, I knew I would have to go out hard from the start to be in the front. I swam hard from the horn, and was working hard to keep on Derek's (and another fast swimmer's) feet, but the effort I was putting out seemed above where I wanted to be. I fell back a bit, and came out of the water in third position (with Mike Greenberg right behind me). It was a long run to the transition (which I think was included into the swim time), and I was onto the bike soon after.
|Don't we all look the same...?|
Conditions on race day were absolutely amazing for throwing down a fast bike split. The sun was shining, there was pretty much no wind, and the roads were nice and flat (with a few gentle hills). After a bit of a hiccup getting into my cycling shoes, I was up to speed in no time. I was in the lead before the 5km mark, and stayed there for the rest of the ride. I don't have any numerical data to share from the ride (I race number free), but man I was cooking (at least thats what everyone said after). I just rode where I felt comfortable, and held my effort, which just happened to give me the days fastest bike split ( I guess my winter bike commuting paid off).
|Just starting off the bike|
A funny side story here. My Dad was volunteering at the race (mount/dismount line), and as people were waiting for the first cyclists to return, he overhead a guy (Mike from Guelph) making bets that Lionel Sanders would be the first back from the bike (Mike was betting beer on this). My Dad (who is a rare gambler and non-drinker) decided to bet Mike that Andrew Bolton would in fact be the first cyclist to return. Well we all know how that turned out....I wonder what type of beer Mike will be bringing my Dad...?
|First off the bike|
I had seen where everyone was at the bike turnaround, so I knew that Lionel was going to be on my heels in no time. My running has been getting stronger after a lot of work in the off-season, but I knew my lead on Lionel would probably not be enough to stay in the front. I seemed to be holding pretty good times per km, but by the halfway turnaround on the run, I saw Lionel quickly approaching. I held him off until the 5km mark, at which point he took over, and kept the lead. I didn't slow up, and ran strong to the line, for a second place overall finish.
|Finish for 2nd OA|
Post Race/Concluding Remarks
I am pretty happy with my first race of the season (for those who know me, the race went very medium...). My times shaped up pretty nicely, and I was less than a minute back from Lionel (my time this year would have actually beaten Lionel's winning time from last year...).
After the race (as part of the Multisport Canada Ambassador Team), I was given the opportunity to present the "racer of the day award", which was nice for me and hopefully likewise for the recipient. Post race interview can be found here.As usual, a big thanks goes out to Multisport Canada for putting on a great race, and also to eLoad for their continued support. Can't forget the coaches and family members either...Thanks!!!
So thats it from me for now. Watch for me a little later in the season at the Huronia sprint race, and also as I contest for the Triathlon Ontario "Triple Crown" (which includes: Magog, Bracebridge, and Edmonton).
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