I found myself on the beach at 6:25am anticipating the cannon. The beach start is not my favorite, mostly because I am not very strong with them. I have always had a tough time running through the water. Luckily the lake is deep and there are only 3 or 4 steps required before a dive!
The cannon booms and I am in the midst of the froth and many athletes who I wanted to key off of were right there. I glued myself to my buddy Chris's feet and told myself not to leave them. I have always had a good swim when I have done this. After the first loop, I exited the water to see that I was right in the middle of the long line of athletes. It was hard to see where I actually was while in the water, the chop was pretty bad and in a lake there is no rhythm to the waves like you might find in the ocean. This makes things even more difficult.
Anyway, we somehow got gapped on the second loop and we found ourselves 3minutes down to the main group on the road. My plan was to ride steady, but with most of the race up the road I thought I would ride with Chris to the turn around at 7 miles to see where we were. Even though we were 9 minutes down on Potts, we had taken 75seconds out of Bell, Lovato and Evans, with Lieto just about a minute up the road. As we got back to town at mile 15 we could see the group up the road and finally made contact at about mile 25...just in time for the hills.
Long story short, I blew up at about 85 miles. Not surprised at all looking back, I went for it. WHY you ask? Well on the road, in the moment, with the quality of the field I thought it was my only option to make a check and finish high. Big mistake! I didn't think that everyone would fade like a typical field might. There were 3 Ironman Champions and 2 top-10 Kona guys in the field...yet despite their experience and results, the race played out EXACTLY the same... A correctly paced race would have yielded a very good result on this day and that is something that I can take forward from here.
So I'm taking my lesson, confidence, knowledge and running with it. I will likely race again soon, so don't be surprised if you see me on the start list before IMWI on Sept 12! ;)
I want to say thanks to Jeff and the family for a great homestay, I'll be back guys!
Sue, thanks for everything and especially your talk after the race!
Have a great rest of your weekend everyone! Also stay tuned for some big changes and news coming from BBMC and Trek!