Seeking redemption from Austin, I most certainly was. I got there Saturday about 11:00 a.m. and did my bike and run prep a little cool but not too bad. I was by myself this trip so thinking of getting into the lake without a wetsuit because I need someone to zip me up, was a little daunting. I also didn't want to bother anyone, so jumped in, I swam. Good thing it was a short swim, it wasn't too bad but I was getting cold within 10 minutes. I swam several meters passed that big orange bouy in the photo and swam back. The water was refreshing but on the chilly side. The rest of the afternoon I took a nap and rested in in the hotel.
Race morning brought temperatures into the low 40's as everyone was making their way and getting set up into transition. I didn't know what other people were going to do but I laid out gloves and arm warmers just in case it was chilly getting out of the water. The air temperature was so cold even with wetsuits it was actually warmer to wait for the start in the water.
Once the swim started, it was a fast dash out front then I get reeled back in, a hard right and it was game on. I didn't except the chop to be that bad, but it was. It was fun battling the waves coming at you in all sorts of angles. The Life Guards had their work cut out, as I heard several whistles being blown to rescue swimmers who didn't quite make it through. I'm glad this was not an Ironman branded race, the swim would have been called off for being too cold and having too much chop. I had a decent swim time in 34+, considering the amount of chop their was. I had worked with Jeremy Brown from MindRight Multisport the week to get some crossover I had going on straightened out, so it was a straight swim for me this week and it's amazing how sighting was much easier.
I had the fastest transition with an in and out from swim to bike in 49 seconds. I skipped right over my gloves and arm warmers, the sun was out by now and I didn't feel like I needed them. The whole bike regarding the temperature I was comfortable. I was really moving the first half off the bike hitting just over 24 mph average for the first hour, then we had some strong winds on the back half and my average pulling my overall average down to 22.8 mph overall but I was still passing people (left) and right, except for Philip Shama hammering it out doing the relay. He became my cycling buddy for a little while out there on the second half as we were taking legal pulls but eventually I fell off from him.
I got off to a great start on my run and controlling myself from going too fast or so I thought at the time. I had no idea Lars Finagar was in the race until I saw him way out in front of me, but unfortunately for him he was DQ'd for not wearing his helmet before the race when he was on his bike. This meant I had the "official" lead and had no idea.
The run course was 3 loops with a couple of out and backs so it kind of easy to keep track of where you were with a few guys. There were two guys I mainly had my eyes on - Pablo Gomez in the 20 year old age group and Pat Doughtery who was in mine. Pablo was running well but I had estimated at some of the out and backs I had a 4 minute lead on him that would shrink to about a minute by the time it was over. Pat, was running well but I was holding a good lead over him for most of the race. Starting out on the run it was great to see all the people from Tyler who came down to cheer for everyone, especially Jeffrey Mayhall who took all these pictures.
My back was really tight by mile 3-4 and I had to stop once each lap and let my back loosen up and that seemed to help a lot, however, with about 4 miles to go my legs ran out of steam and that was that. Pat caught me with just under a mile to go and I couldn't respond to his speed.
Due to Lars being disqualified I moved up to "officially" 2nd overall but "technically" 3rd overall. He's a great athlete and you can't just count him out when he just whooped on all of us. Pat moved up to 2nd overall and so that moved me up to 1st in the 30-34 age group. My time came out to be 4:33.
That's a wrap on the 2014 season that had a lot of ups and downs, fun and hard training days, exciting trips and adventures. Thank you to God, for all the talent and drive that it takes and thank you for all the support to my Beautiful Wife Calley, Team Extremus, Cobb Mobb & Cobb Cycling, The Tyler Bike Club and Fresh Race Team!