Monday, August 24
The first taste of draft legal racing and I'm hooked, the speed and tactics of this kind of event really keep you on your toes. In the days leading up to the race it was announced that Simon, Brent, Kyle and Paul would all be racing the Nationals this year which only fueled added nervous excitement. The pre race meeting was really the who's who of triathlon in Canada, it was really neat to see the top 10 guys in the country all in one place.
The race was set for 1:45 pm on Sunday; a nice late start to let the age groupers and the elite women get through the course and pump up the excitement for the male race. I had a beautiful ride in from Westbank for my warm up and then went through the bike/ helmet/athlete check and proceeded to transition. This is where you get your first real taste of the crowds, there had to be 100 people just watching the guys get ready! After that I decided to find some shade and chill until marshalling.
The hype before the event was unreal, they had some serious pump up music going, enough to make my sister and mom a little flustered before the gun whet. Now this is where I get my experience swimming in packs, I have never swum with 40 guys all relatively my speed. It was complete chaos for the first 500 meters, every man fighting for that inch of space. After I rounded the buoy at the 500-meter mark I found myself just of the back of the first pack heading into the beach turn. After the 750 I was able to sneak past a few more guys and come out on the heals of Paul Tichelar in 8th.
After a great transition it was off to the bike, for the first couple of km I found myself on the back of Tichelars wheel desperately trying to catch the front pack. Once we hit the hill Paul dropped me like a sack of potatoes and I found myself riding alone for the next couple km. I eased up and let the next chase pack gobble me up. I spent the rest of the race in the lead chase pack about a minute back with Bryden, Horn and Yorke. After 6 laps of the bike course we headed out for the run.
T2 was a bit slow and I found myself about 15 feet back for Bryden and Yorke. After a cautious first couple of km, my lack of fuel on the bike started to catch up and I found myself in survival mode. I fought through the last 8 km in the run with a disappointing final leg.
All in all I came to Kelowna and did what I wanted to do, my ultimate goal was to get into the top 10; with the need to get into the top 16 so I could apply for my International Competition Card and compete for Canada on the Continental Cup Series.
16th Canadian male overall with lots of room for improvement.