A little bit about last year:
2011 was an interesting year. In April I'd completed the Galvestion Half Ironman, and had been convinced to do the Austin Half Ironman as well. So a friend and I went out in search of a sprint and an olympic/quarter to do before the Half Iron in October. Bastrop was that sprint. We'd gone out looking for a simple sprint, one that would be too difficult. The pre-race briefing started with
"Welcome to the toughest little tri in Texas!"
My friend and I looked at each other. What had we gotten ourselves into?
It turned out to be a snake style pool swim, a VERY hilly road course, and an equally hilly run course. The thing about this course is that the hills aren't rolling hills. The grades are much more extreme than many are used to.
|Megan and Me|
The swim - 200 meters snake style in a 33 meter pool with a time trials start. This year's swim was great. I was seeded pretty well (last year I was behind two teen/preteens that were slower than I and made the swim/passing difficult). The person behind me passed me after I accidentally kicked him, but we talked after the race and I got to apologize. One thing about this swim - the chop from the other swimmers makes this a lot like an open water swim!
Transition was fast! I got hung up a little bit on my race belt, but sorted it out and got moving. I'd rolled my socks up so I could just roll them onto wet feet. It worked out really well.
The bike. Getting out of transition I had some trouble getting my left foot clipped in, and wasted a few seconds trying to get moving. Not a big loss, but one that pissed me off all the same. Not sure if I had mud or debris from the previous night's rain in the cleat, but it took some doing. Once I got on the bike, things were smooth. Well, as smooth as it could be. The course is considered to be a pretty technical course. I know of at least two broken chains and many flats, mostly due to steep uphill climbs and road debris. The course is an out and back with a net downhill going out, and a net gain on the return. The roads were damp and winding so getting up to speed was quickly followed by a climb or a quick slowdown for a turn. I held back a bit on the way out because I remembered from the course from the year before and really hammered it on the way back. Getting close to the turnaround I started counting how many women were in ahead and started chasing the one in front of me. It seemed I was a better climber, but she had better speed on the downhills. Two new things for this race - a disc wheel cover from Wheelbuilder and an aerohelmet from Rudy Project. Not a huge difference for a 16 mile, very hilly course, but good practice for the half iron distance race next month. I'll blog about the wheel cover and helmet soon. I did use some of my Infinit Nutrition cycling mix in the FLEXR Sports remote kit to get calories in. It's debatable for that distance that one would use any, but I was going to need water anyway, so I added the calories. It was nice to have. I was a little nervous using the Duro Tire slicksters on the wet roads, but they stayed fast and grippy the whole race - no skidding or sliding out of control.
Transition was good. F A S T. And onto the run!
Volunteers - these guys and gals can make or break the race. They really made it for me. Supportive and all about the athletes. Thanks, guys!
My one complaint about the race has to do with my rack neighbor in transition. At some point when he came into transition on the bike, rather than rack his bike (he couldn't get his seat under the rack) he just leaned his bike up against mine. WOW. I was appalled. It's one thing to have your bike fall or cause another's to fall by accident, but to save time in transition by leaning your bike against someone else's is just wrong. I checked his results later - the time he saved by leaning his bike on mine didn't help him at all.
So - since no race report would be complete without finishing times and places:
|200 m swim with swim exit||2:14||2:24|
|16 mile bike||52:45||56:18|
|3.4 mile run (measured 3.5)||26:29||28:29|
|Age Group Finisher||1||1|
We were told that race registration increased from just under 150 to 210. Add this race to your calendar and let's make next year an even bigger event!