We got to the park around 6:30 and I found my bike rack. I had a prime spot very close to the bike start line. I was the first person in my rack to arrive, so I chose the end spot and set out my stuff. We has about an hour to kill, so we went for a brisk walk to stay warm.
The event organizers made a great change this year. The swim start was individual based on ability, instead of a mass wave start. Everyone lined up and started about 2 seconds apart from one another. It made the water a lot safer for everyone. My swim was the highlight of the race. Last year, I couldn't stick my head in the water and basically doggie paddled my way through the event. This year I started out with a strong free-style with no panic. Unfortunately, I CANNOT pace myself. I sprinted out WAY too fast and got extremely winded after the first 200 meters. I flipped over and swam about another 200 meters using a backstroke and finished the last hundred free-style/breaststroke. It was pretty congested at the end of the swim and breaststroke afforded me the best visibility to dodge other peoples body parts. I finished the swim 3 minutes faster then last time.
T1 was pretty uneventful and my time was within seconds of last year.
The bike was slow. It started with me about crashing into a guy having "technical difficulties" getting on his bike at the start line. I missed him, but it threw me off my game. As with last year, there is a craptastic hill at the immediate start of the bike. My biking needs to improve. I haven't ridden nearly as much this year as I would like and I also need to find someplace to go where the traffic is not interfering with my speed. Riding to the pool is a great warm up, however, the conditions are not good for real training. I may end up taking my bike to Lafayette to ride the country roads around Clay Knob. I am very familiar with the area and there is little traffic to contend with, as well as some killer hills to train on!
T2 was faster then last year and went really smooth.
The run was fine. My speed was slower then I normally run a 5K. I did little to no running in the last several weeks, so for a complete lack of training, it was perfectly acceptable.
All in all...I am happy I did the event, especially since I wasn't planning on it. I signed up at the last minute. I really wasn't going to race until the Oly in the middle of August. It was a good warm-up race and it highlighted the areas I need to focus.
As a final note - I did finish the race 1 minute faster then last race!
On to Oly Land!