The Howitzer blast tore through the morning stillness, jolting hearts and minds, and starting the Shawnigan lake half-iron. For me it was also the one year anniversary of my start in long distance tri (and what an amazing year it has been!).
As per the plan, I was racing the swim and the bike portions for team PT Performance. A very nice woman named Karen came on at the last minute and filled in the run, so my job for the day was to come off the bike in good position for Karen to run it home!
The swim got off to a bit of a rocky start. I am still not strong or aggressive enough to really fight for position in the initial blender of human bodies, so I was pushed off my ideal line for the first couple hundred meters. I settled into a good rhythm though, and was able to bridge up to the group in front of me. I came out of the water leading the second pack, just a couple minutes behind the leaders! Overall I am really happy with my swim, I think my pacing was bang on and I think it was a great start to the season!
The bike was not the smoothest of my life. The cold water/air lead to stiff/numb hands and feet, making it all but impossible to get my shoes on. About halfway through the first lap my breakfast decided it didn't really feel like staying in my stomach anymore, and I spent the next 1.5 laps in an epic battle with my gag reflex trying to talk it into sticking around. The end result of this struggle was complete lack of nutrition for the first half of the bike! I was still setting a good pace for the first three laps though and managed to maintain my position despite hitting a bit of a wall going into the last 20km.
At the end of the day I managed to get the job done, coming off the bike in 6th overall and leading the relay teams, giving Karen a bit of head start on the run. Karen ran a FANTASTIC 1:32:00ish to maintain our lead, and it was two tired but smiling faces high fiving at the finish line!
I am really happy with the race overall. I feel like it has given me a good step to carry forward with the rest of the season!
The PT crew was out in strength, lead on by a course record run and strong finish by Adam!
Congrats to all the other competitors, it was a cold, hard day for everyone!
Finally a big thank you to all the volunteers, without you non of it is possible!