Saturday, May 30, 2009

Cap Tex Tri - Austin ITU Continental Cup Race Report


Mellow Johnny's -Lance Armstrong's bike shop in Austin!






This past Monday (Memorial Day) I competed in the Cap Tex Tri in Austin, Texas (which I’m going to coin as the “Boulder of the south” – so many active people there). I’ve never raced on a Monday before and I usually don’t train that much on Monday either because it’s always my recovery day, so I was very interested to see how this race would go…

Swim: We started the race with a deep water swim start, not one that I get to do too often. Basically what happens is that you get to pick a spot in the water based on your starting number, a rope is held in front of you as you tread water and you duck under it and take off when the horn sounds. For the first part of the swim I just hammered to try to get into a group. This worked well and for the first half of the swim as I had a draft to swim into. Eventually, I wasn’t able to hold the pace of the girls in front of me, but I still managed a low 19 swim, a huge improvement for me from last year! I ended up exiting the water right behind Kate Mcllroy from New Zealand, the eventual winner of the race.

Bike: Just like last week, the larger pack was in front of me. I traded off pulls with Lauren Goldstein-Kral (right behind me in the swim) for the first 2 laps and we were able to bridge up to Taylor Cooke who was a little ways up the road. By the start of the third lap, Annie Warner and Jocelyn Petrella had caught our group of 3 so we were now up to a pack of 5. Once Annie and Jocelyn caught us, the pace of our pack quickened and our group worked well together for the remaining two laps of the bike.

Run: The best way for me to describe the run course to you would be that it was a 1/4 mile steeplechase and 6 mile run. The run out of transition included hopping up 3 large stairs and I was quickly reminded why I’d avoided hurdles my entire life/track career and just stuck to running… once I got out to the road, I was able to push the pace for the first mile and put a gap in between myself and the other girls who had been in the bike pack. The heat and humidity were definitely factors on the run and I felt like mentally I was trying to sprint as fast as I could to each aid station where I would be able to grab a towel that had been soaked in ice water (total lifesavers!) and some sports drink as well to get some relief from the heat. As I got to the final lap of the run, I did a time check and saw that the girl in front of me had about a minute gap on me and I was at least 2 minutes ahead of my next competitor so I just focused on good form for the final section of the run. I finished up with a 36:19, 3rd fastest run of the day and a 9th overall finish!!

Right at the finish, I was greeted by a USADA (US Anti Doping Agency) rep. Turns out that the 9th place finisher had been selected for drug testing. At that point, I had an hour to provide a sample for them and I used every last minute of it drinking 3 bottles of water and 2 bottles of Gatorade. Unfortunately in this day and age, random drug testing is a necessary evil of sport but I was more than happy to comply – anything to keep our sport clean! :)

Many thanks to my Austin homestay, Mike and Lindsay Rosenthal and kids (even though they'll probably never read this)! Thanks for drawing me maps to everywhere in Austin, feeding me, and making me feel at home! :)

I’ve traveled and raced quite a bit this past month and now I get a little bit of a break to get a good block of training in and rehab a couple minor injuries. Next up for me is the Coteau du Lac, Canada ITU race in a couple of weeks.

Happy summer everyone!
AHahn

1 comment:

Angi Axmann said...

...and thanks to your host family for letting me shower:-)
I am not sure what you mean: STEEPLECHASE IS GREAT!!!
Good luck in Canada. It was so nice to get to meet you and I hope we see each other soon!!! You are such a fun person.
Angi