Monday, June 16, 2014

River Rampage Triathlon 2014 - redemption

I am not sure that I have ever gone "to" Green River, Utah. Sure, I have gone "through" it to get to Moab and points beyond. It's a small town about 3 hours southeast of Salt Lake City and it's main draw besides a truck stop, is the Green River Recreation Area, home of the River Rampage Triathlon.

I had signed up for this race thinking it would be a good "recovery" race four weeks out from IMTX. Just didn't realize I would throw a half ironman in between! This race is put on by TriUtah. I've competed in several of their events and they really put on a good race. The swim is a one mile down river swim for both the Olympic and Sprint distances. It's fast! Unfortunately, this year it is running a little too fast and has resulted in some accidents and even one death so the authorities asked that the swim portion be cancelled.  We had the choice of still racing or transferring our entry to another event.

I chose to go ahead with it since it was a recovery race for me. I figured I could use a bike/run to flush out my body so I headed out Friday afternoon. Got checked into my hotel and met up with a fellow Salt Lake Tri Club member, Scott, to pick up packets and eat dinner. In our brief exploration of the town, the only thing we found was a little drive-in that served pizza. It wasn't bad and of course I got an ice cream cone! We drove part of the bike course and then hit our rooms to finish preparations for the morning.
It was a beautiful morning. Cool and crisp with just a touch of wind. The river looked benign enough but was still running fast. Some people had not gotten the word about the canceled swim until packet pickup and were disappointed to say the least.

I heard my name in the transition area and found out there were more than a couple of us from SLTC racing. Chris was there with a couple of his friends.
The wind started picking up after the athlete meeting. They were going to do a time trial start with the Sprint racers heading out first so I got lined up and ready to go. The bike was uneventful. I passed quite a few people and felt good about how it was going. I can't seem to get away from the wind in anything I do and today was no exception. I felt strong, though and after the turnaround, passed a few more people. Part of the last mile of the ride before turning back into the campground was on a section of road that was really rough. They had marked the potholes but the whole road felt very shaky.

Thanks so much to Myrleen Wright for taking so many photos!
Fast transition and then off to run. The sprint was a one loop course around the golf course. It ended up being a little shy of a 5k. My legs felt good off of the bike and running felt good for the first mile. It was then I realized I really still couldn't breathe. I'm so over this cold/allergy thing. I ran more than walked but had to walk in order to get my breath. Some of the people I passed on the bike started passing me. Dang it! I set my sight on one runner in front of me and even with my run/walk, I was able to catch and pass her. My goal was to stay in front of her. She was several age groups younger than me and ended up on the podium too. Staying in front of her was one of my small victories in life!

All in all a decent race while recovering from Boise 70.3 and being sick. I averaged over 18 mph on the bike in the wind and 11 minute pace with all my walking. I know this doesn't compare to all you speedy people out there but I'll take it.

And a good showing by all Salt Lake Tri Club people, I believe everyone made it to the podium.
I'm set for a week of rest. My shoulder is acting up again and my body is just plain old tired.
Last picture - we really do live in a beautiful state. Even when it isn't that scenic, it is!