Spent the week touring the Golden Isles with the family and capped off a great time with winning the 2011 Turtle Crawl Sprint Triathlon at Jekyll Island on Saturday.
Weather was perfect and the swim conditions were ideal – no chop in the ocean and almost like a lake. Water temp was 76ºF so it was a wetsuit legal race but due to the short distance, I opted for my BlueSeventy speed suit. The 40+ males started 3’ behind the 39- males so I knew there would be some congestion to contend with on the bike course as I’m at best, a MOP swimmer. At any given time, you could stand up during the swim and were only chest deep which is great for new swimmers or people with a fear of water. No excuse during the swim other than only being in the pool 1X during the past 14 days and 7X since Ironman® New Orleans on 4/17.
400M Swim with long run to T1: 8:49
T1: 1:30 – had some difficulty getting my socks on.
Bike was originally supposed to be 12 to 13 miles but due to construction on the island, they had to change the course and cut it back to 9.3 miles. Bike was uneventful and had to pass quite a bit of people due to my lousy swimming. No matter how many times you tell people to stay right except to pass they always migrate to the center of the lane and make it difficult for the faster riders passing 2 and 3 wide without crossing over the center line. Also found it amusing to see people on high end bikes and deep dish carbon wheels in long course bike mode – slow and steady with a low cadence. Come on people, this is a Sprint not an Ironman®. Ride like you are in a hurry!
9.3 miles – 22:42 @ 24.6mph and PAvg of 258W – fastest bike split
When I got into transition, I only saw 2 bikes racked and 1 in the process of being racked. It didn’t register that I was in the top 3 or 4 to start the run. I and another racer left T2 at the same time. I quickly passed him and passed another racer at about 0.75 miles. At the turnaround, I estimated I was 250’ behind the leader with 1.6 miles to go. I ended up passing him at mile 2 and surged to keep him from hanging on my heels. Come to find out, he started in the earlier wave so I had at least a 3' lead on him once I passed him. I think I caught everyone by surprise as they were a little frazzled when I came down the finish line as I had to dodge a woman with a baby stroller and a man with a dog in the last 500’. Once I came through, they cleared the path so the other finishers would not have to contend with the obstacles.
Will definitely be back next year to defend my title and hopefully, will be in better swim shape.