Over the past couple of years, I’ve been trying to try out new 70.3 races. This year I added Oceanside to my schedule. My past staple had always been Wildflower in May. Given that, it was a challenge to ramp up so early in the season. I had been feeling great until the past month, when work forced me to take my foot off the petal a bit…darn work always gets in the way! That and all of the rain we’ve had here in Northern California made it a challenge to train in the wind, as is very common around my house. Given those challenges, I went into the race with an open mind and was just trying to have fun and test my fitness!
I flew down on Friday morning to register, get in a spin and meet up with Rich Cruse. It was a sunny beautiful day down there and it was great to soak up the atmosphere. I had a few friends that were down there and we met up for a spin. I also had the opportunity to chat with the SRAM crew and show off my new Kestrel!
The swim course is set up in the harbor, so you are protected from the large surf. My wave started very late at 7:45am in wave #22! It worked out though, as the bathroom lines were much smaller and I was able to watch Potts, Rapp and others fly through transition. As my wave inched closer, you could see the seals swimming in between the buoys! I’ve been feeling good in the water and was excited to let her rip a bit. They claimed the water was 59′, but it didn’t seem that cold. I was rocking in the new TYR Hurricane wetsuit and I loved it! For once, I actually felt the suit made me faster. Big thanks to @tyrsport for supporting Team Trakkers this year! I felt strong right away and somehow kept away from the sighting challenged, which was a huge plus. I was able to hang on to a few peeps feet a couple of times, but that is an area I need to work on. It was choppy out there near the turn around, but it didn’t bother me at all. I really tried to push the envelope on the way back and was please to see 34:27 out of the water. This is a new swim PR for me and I believe my fastest prior was 34:50 in the tranquil russian river at Vineman 70.3 last year! This was a great way to start the day for me.
T1 was uneventful in 3:49. I wanted sub 3, but it was a challenge with the long run in and run out.
It was then time to fly with my new Kestrel 4000 SRAM Red. I loved the first 24.45mi…averaging 22.01mph and feeling the love. It was slightly overcast and a bit windy on the first part, but that didn’t bother me on the relatively flat to small roller first part. I knew not to push too hard and felt like I saves a lot for the second half. Then the house of pain hit me hard…
The first of 3-4 climbs started out at 14-17%! Given that I was in was in a late wave, a good 70% of peeps where walking their bikes. No way was I going down that path, so I just suffered and made it go by a quickly as possible. The rest of the hills weren’t as bad and I was still feeling I could regain that 20+ mph hurdle. My low avg in the hills was 19.2 and I was pissed at that! After the hills, I had 12mi or so to the finish and my plan was to hammer a bit to get that average back. The problem was that this is when the winds picked up. This was very frustrating, as I just wasn’t able to hit that hurdle. I became laser focused and even was at 19.99 near the end. Most others were resting their legs a bit, but I was hammering. I ended in 2:50:44 (19.68 mph avg) knowing that I may have burned to many match sticks as they say.
Nutrition wise I was perfect on the bike with three EFS drinks and one liquidshot.
T2 was quick in just 2:03 and I was off.
The sun was starting to come out and I loved the two loop run course. It wasn’t as flat or shady as Boise, but the crowns were great and there was a nice ocean breeze. I was regretting my bike decisions right away and just took it on mile at a time. I turned out 56:27 split (around 8:35) on first lap. I was disappointed as I started my second lap and wanted to see if I could go sub 8’s the rest of the way. I knew very quickly that wasn’t going to happen and just cruised in for my second fastest 70.3 ever in 5:29:16
I felt that my nutrition was solid on the run and even used most of my liquidshot/water mix in my fuelbelt. The run was by far the most frustrating leg, as I’ve been really working on trying to get sub 8’s. It’s been there in training and I need to make sure it shows up for my Hawaii 70.3 in early June! Overall. I’m excited to see where I’m at this early in the season. I had a great family vacation right after the race down in Ixtapa, Mexico and feel refreshed and ready to suffer in training! This upcoming weekend, I have the Diablo century ride here in my hometown which should be fun.
I used tri bike transport for Oceanside and loved their service. I would highly recommend them to anyone and love that I didn’t have to break down my new Kestrel!
Lastly, I will be rocking this shirt on Friday in hopes of landing a coveted Kona lottery spot!
Until next time, Cheers!