Below is my race report for the Hyannis Olympic triathlon that occurred on June 15, 2019.
Please let me know if you have any questions.
Hyannis – 2019
Nobody remembers who finished second but the guy who finished second – Bobby Unser
Saturday was the Hyannis triathlon at Craigville Beach in Barnstable, MA. This event has both a Sprint and an Olympic distance on the same day, at the same time and share parts of the same course. I was participating in the Olympic. This was my first time participating in this event. The weather was nothing short of spectacular and overall conditions were perfect for racing. The event was very well organized and there were a lot of racers since this was the Massachusetts Age Group State Championships. Also, on a side note, they had the cleanest port-a-jons I ever did see!
The swim was at Craigville Beach which faces south. Since it is Cape Cod, to be honest, I did look online to see where the most recent great white shark pings had been recorded. I usually show up on race day with multiple goals and on this day, my first goal, was not to get eaten by a shark. As long as I accomplished this first goal, it would be a good day! So with that thought in my mind, I left transition and headed to the beach.
The water was 70 degrees and the waves were almost non-existent. The course for the Olympic distance was rectangular and you had to do two loops (swimming along the beach to connect the loops). I was in the second wave, 40 and older males. We first headed South for 60 yards and then turned right to go West (sun at our backs). The first turn was crowded and a little challenging since 60 yards is not enough room for people to spread out. Once around the turn sighting was easy and conditions were great. About 400 yards down the beach was the next yellow buoy and a turn, again to the right and heading north for about 30 yards and then another right turn heading east. This is where things became challenging. I was happy to have my tinted goggles, but with the 7:20am rising sun in my face it was still hard to see. We were supposed to stay about 20-30 yards offshore but after about 3 minutes heading east, I noticed I had drifted farther out and was almost going straight into the oncoming 3rd wave which was still swimming west. I quickly adjusted my course but I knew I was now swimming a longer distance than required. A stupid mistake that would cost me some time. A couple minutes later I rounded the yellow buoy headed back South and the sun was never a factor again. The rest of the swim went well. The thought of sharks kept me focused and the joy of escaping the water with all of my limbs was immense!
Swim time: 22:38
From the timing matt to my bike was a long barefoot run on pavement with little rocks. I can’t say I ran well here, but the execution once I got to my bike was fine.
T1 time: 2:37
The course is listed to be 21 miles, but my GPS had me at just over 19. It was a 2 loop course and it was as flat and as fast as a New England course could be. The first loop was very lonely. I had passed a few riders early but I expected to see a lot more. There were police and volunteers at every turn, but I still almost went off course twice, again, losing time when I jammed on my brakes to course correct. At about mile 9, there’s the turn for the Olympic riders to loop around a second time. Just over a mile later, I was locking up my brakes again and skidding toward an intersection where we are supposed to merge into the oncoming Sprint racing traffic. I have to admit, this was more my fault than anyone else, but maybe a warning about 100 yards sooner would have helped. I didn’t want to be an ass, but well…..sometimes it happens. Again, I lost a little more time. The second lap was not lonely. I was constantly passing riders who were racing the Sprint course. Around mile 18 there were cones set up to keep us to the right and it was deemed a no passing zone. I got caught behind a slower biker and the competitive side was in conflict with my supportive side. I was happy she was there racing, but I really, really, really just wanted to get around. I thought of saying, “I will give $10 if you let me pass you!” Alas, a long two minutes later, the no passing zone ended and I was able to legally do so.
Bike time: 51:29
I got a new pair of Zoots and they didn’t go on my feet as quickly as I would have liked.
T2 time: 1:44
The run course was a perfect 6.2 miles. The Olympic runners had to do 2 loops (sensing a theme?). Running out of T2 I literally had no idea where I was in the rankings. There were so many people around me, but most were racing the Sprint. I was concerned it may start to get a little warm and I wasn’t sure if the course would be hilly. As it turns out, the air was great and the hills were absent. I quickly got into a nice stride, but kept it a little conservative. After a mile or so, there was a great deal of shade and it was just a beautiful course to run. By the time I made the turn to start my second loop I felt confident and comfortable. There would be no more surprises as I have now seen everything the course had to give. It was nice to have a lot of other racers around to keep me focused. As I headed back to the beach I was feeling happy and good and again I felt grateful to not have been eaten by a shark.
Run time: 44:45
Overall it was another fun day! Lots of good people and a great course. My execution could have been better but I raced well and within expectations based off my training. I met most of my goals, which is good. As it turns out, I was 14th overall and second place in my division. I may have won my division if my execution was better, but most importantly, I had fun and enjoyed an amazing, safe day at the beach! (-:
Overall time: 2:03:11