Saturday, September 18, 2010
My inaugural season as a pro-triathlete finished last Sunday in Nautica Malibu's Classic relay!
Just the day before, I had ventured to Pacific Grove, CA (Monterrey) to compete in Tri Cal's Pacific Grove triathlon. In a rare, local draft-legal race, I placed 14th in a time of 2:04:57. The swim leg was easily the most interesting piece of any triathlon I have ever come across. Referred to as the "kelp crawl", Pacific Grove's swim was so cluttered with live kelp, that at some points I could literally stand on it and have 75% of my body out of the water! This made it increasingly difficult for the lead swimmers to get away from the mediocre swimmers (me), hence the draft-legal pro race.
With that being said, I had a great swim, and fought my way into a pack of 4 or 5, just under 3 minutes down from the leaders. Upon exiting the swim, two mishaps would occur - one within my control and one not. In the midst of ripping my wetsuit off, my timing chip got stuck and cost me 10 vital seconds (in my control). After having worked my ass off to bridge the gap up to 4 other riders, off the back of the pack, I bent down to put my feet in my shoes, looked up and saw that a 25 yard gap had formed between the pack and the rider in front of me! The rider in front of me subsequently pulled out due to an asma attack (out of my control). Having already spent most of my energy to bridge that initial gap, I couldn't catch them because the wind was too punishing. So punishing in fact, at one point I was going downhill into a head wind at 8mph! Those two or three riders who escaped my grasp, finished the bike course over 4 minutes ahead of me, which was good enough for 7 places!
As soon as I was finished, Nousha and I raced back down to Malibu in time for the Nautica Malibu classic relay, the following day. Teamed up with my Dad and close UCLA bud, Austin Ramos, we took down every single relay team! This event was particularly significant, because one year prior, my father had undergone a full knee replacement and this race marked a one year full circle! Seeing as how I pale in comparison to Austin, as a runner, I swam, my Dad biked and Austin ran.
I wound up having the 8th fastest swim split, my Dad the 12th fastest bike split, and like a true anchor leg, Austin split the fastest run of the day. Together we finished atop the podium stand in a time of 1:22:32, four minutes faster than any other relay team!
And with that explanation point, my 2010 season comes to an end. My off-season base training will begin in October and I'm really looking forward to my 2011 season!
Keep on swimming, biking and running! Talk soon!