Wednesday, June 9, 2010
Oliver Half Iron
The Oliver Half Iron is a great race that happens to be just a 35 min drive away. Well I'll keep it real for me it's a 40 minute drive. With the likes of Scott Curry, Kyle Marcotte, Mike Neill, and Paul Tichelaar on the start list I knew it was going to be a fast race.
My plan for the swim was simple. Get on Tichelaar's feet and stay there. The combination of myself swimming well lately and my new Blue Seventy Helix wetsuit kept me in there and feeling smooth. I wore the Blue Seventy Hydra-vision goggles for the first time in a race. These are the goggles with the curved lens. I could totally notice an improvement as not only was sighting easier but I was able to know exactly where the other swimmers were around me at all times. I ended up second out of the water a second behind Paul and felt great. Even if I completely blew up on the bike and run, the race would have been a success because for the first time this season I was able to execute on the swim. After a speedy transition I was first out on the road.
I traded off the lead with Paul for the first 25 or so kilometers until Scott Curry came bike like a bullet. He was flying and ended up setting a bike course record by a massive amount. I'll be watching for him to rip it up at Ironman Coure D'alene in three weeks time. I tried to match Scott and Paul's pace but fell off after about 10k of struggling to hold on. Once on my own I settled back into my game plan. The rest of the bike was fairly uneventful but consistent. Loop courses are always tough as you have to navigate around people and traffic but I guess it gives you a good chance to show off your cool bike gear (see Reynolds Disc). I came into transition 4 minutes down and after another quick transition headed out on the run. I ended up having the fastest T1 and T2 times of the day despite having the worst setup spot so I am definitely taking that away as a positive. Maybe Steve King was right two years ago at the Peach Classic when he called me a "Transition Specialist".
Run: Ironically the run was the one part of the race I was most worried about. I had been struggling with some leg injuries since the Bare Bones Duathlon. The injuries forced me to take some time off and I only had a couple of solid run workouts before the race. However hearing Steve King announcing some of my previous performances as I ran by him about 500m in, completely restored my confidence. Thanks Steve. I struggled with finding a rhythm initially but found it half way through the first lap. I was getting splits that I was catching Scott but running fairly even with Paul. I caught up to Scott just after the turn around heading out onto the second lap and focused in on trying to catch up to Paul. I started hearing splits that I was gaining ground and kept pushing forward. I really found my stride on that last lap but unfortunately I ran out of real estate and finished second by about a minute. I wanted a sub four on that course and that's what I got so it's hard not to be happy. At the same time I wanted to win. My consolation prize was that I was able to get the run course record.
So Round 1 goes to Paul but I am sure we'll battle it out many more times before our careers are over. It's probably better that he took this one, it has put the fire in my gut to get faster. I was definitely impressed by him, not only is he fast (He's my early pick for Ironman Canada Champ) but a super nice guy as well. A Class act as are Scott, Mike Neill and Kyle Marcotte for that matter. Definitely an honor to be out there mixing it up with these guys and I look forward to being on the side lines cheering most of them on at IMC.
Nutrition for the Race: Breakfast: 1 large bowl of Oatmeal, 2 powerbars, 3 scoop of eload.
Bike: 5 and 1/2 eload scoop (appx 150g Carb) mixed into two 750ml bottles, Two E'load gels washed down with water, half a bottle of gatorade
Run: Cup of Gatorade at every aid station
All in all it was a great race with tons of great people. Congrats to everyone who raced on Sunday, especially those who completed a Half for the first time, Robbie, Nicole, Matt, Jason among others. Also congrats to everyone who was out there representing Impact Multisport including Justin for who took 8th place and secured an Ironman Canada spot. A big thanks to everyone that was out there supporting me. I think my family(Mom, Dad, Christine, Bryce, Mike, Josie) probably spent more energy running to different spots to cheer than I did in the race. Also a big thanks to Tracey McQuair from Pro Physio for helping me heal from the Bare Bones and to Kevin for everything he has done to get me to this point. I definitely enjoy racing locally and look forward to doing more local events in the future.
Here are some photos from the event