After the Cozumel/Tongyeong double, I found out I had gotten bit by a spider back in Korea. When I got home my foot was twice the size and I could barely walk. I ended up having to take 4 full days off doing anything until the swelling went down. This wasn’t the ideal preparation for my final race of the season, but it fell right in line with how the rest of my season had been going. Luckily I’ve been dealing with stuff like this throughout the year and so I just carried on with business as usual without too big of a fuss.
I got a chance to drive down to the Olympic training center in Chula Vista, CA the week before the race and do some tests and have a few high performance meetings with the USAT crew. It was a fun week leading up to the race and I was stoked to finally be finishing off the season even though the preparation hadn’t been ideal.
The double super sprint race format was killer, 300m swim, 8k bike, and 2.5k run - all twice through with no break. Lars Finanger is doing an amazing job of bringing the supersprint format into the USA triathlon limelight. The whole race was filmed by Universal Sports which made for an awesome race environment. Most of the athletes did interviews beforehand that would later be used in the broadcast, and one of the questions I was asked before the race was “what is your ideal race?” Surprisingly my “best case scenario” answer ended up playing out exactly how I had hoped!
I lead the first swim out and drilled the first lap on the bike. Starting the second of 8 laps Ben Kanute and Eric Lagerstrom had joined me and from there we worked flawlessly together and put a solid buffer of time on the rest of the field. The three of us stayed together from the second lap of the bike all the way until the final run when Ben put the hammer down and was able to sprint away for the win, beating me by just .6 of a second! It was a fantastic race for the end of the season!
Right after the Men’s race, Lars set up a two person “team relay” where each team member did 300m swim, 4k bike, and 1.5k run. There were men/men teams, and men/women teams with $500 in prize money for the fastest team overall, and the fastest co-ed team. I got picked by Sara Mclarty and the two of us ended up winning not only the co-ed prize, but we beat all the guy/guy teams too and won the overall! That was probably the highlight of the day.
After this race I started my 3 week offseason and was able to go on an awesome road trip with Katie Hursey.
For all the sheisty things that went down this season, I’m definitely on the upswing mentally and physically and am looking forward to next season and Olympic points qualification starting!