Flashback Fridays 19: MPLS Triathlon 2013

July 13, 2013

This was my first triathlon last year, and it was a great event. I wasn’t going to run this one again, but it was so much fun that I elected to add the sprint at the last minute.

Funny how some of these throwaway races end up being the most memorable. It was a wild day.

The expo was on site this year, and wasn’t bad (But I preferred it at the convention center the previous year). It was a hot day, but the talk was of the storms coming overnight. This was becoming a pattern this year…

Got my bib and shirt and headed home. I woke up to thunder and torrential storms. Great.

I looked at the weather report and it was supposed to be clearing out so I  got my gear and headed downtown.

It wasn’t clearing out. They were updating FB noting that the race was delayed and transition was closed. We were told to stay in our cars if we were already at the event site.

I hung out in the car for a couple of hours before heading towards transition. The worse seemed to be over, but the rain was still hit and miss. Transition was open. Volunteers had no idea what was happening with the race, but we got periodic updates. The race was still on, but we needed 20 minutes without lightning before starting. We got thunder every 10 minutes or so, which was resetting the 20 minute timer.

But there were bigger issues. The small tranquil lake had a pretty strong current…and whitecaps! I have never seen that on Nokomis! The run out and bike in sections of transition were flooded. So was most of the second half of the Olympic bike course. While we were waiting, they had to create a whole new course.

Fortunately, my company was an event sponsor and I could hang out in the VIP tent…staying nice and warm (and fed) while all the chaos was going on.

In the end, the race went off…but not as scheduled. Everyone did the revised sprint course (partially because the Olympic bike course was flooded, partially because the organizers only had permits for a certain period of time, and the clock was ticking). The time trial start was revised to 2 people starting every 3 seconds instead of one. This made for a more congested swim course…with a strong current and choppy waves. I am a confident swimmer, and I was nervous hitting the water. Fortunately, there was a wall of lifeguards. You could have walked the course going from kayak to kayak.

Swim Split: 10:02

Uneventful transition.

T1 Split: 4:33

Bike was great! I felt like I was flying. It is such a pretty course, and the sun was out at this point. The roads are quite bumpy for this ride, and you had to be very careful. The course was long since we had to do an extra lap around Nokomis to get to transition (the original route was flooded). Favorite moment: flying down a hill with a speed limit sign of 30 mph and a radar gun showing your speed. The cop at the intersection was urging riders to go faster and break the speed limit (I did). How cool is that?

Bike Split: 53:06

Another uneventful transition.

T2 Split: 2:42

The run was a simple 5k run around the lake. Everything had dried out and it was a beautiful flat run.

Run Split: 27:07

Finish Time: 1:37:31

Overall, I was quite pleased. I am gaining speed and confidence on the short course, and it turned into a great event! The organizers did a fantastic job recreating the course at the last minute and of keeping us posted on developments!

The trend of storms overnight and a rough swim was getting frustrating…and it was an ominous prelude to what I would encounter in Racine!



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4 responses to “Flashback Fridays 19: MPLS Triathlon 2013

  1. Congrats on a great race!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. You’ve had A LOT of experience with weather-induced race delays. How do you handle the nerves that can come with the extra wait and how do you time your eating and drinking given the constant unknowns of start times?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Our activity of choice is an outdoor endeavor. Weather just comes with the territory. We train in bad weather, and we sometimes race in bad weather. Occasionally, it just isn’t safe out there. Events get delayed or shortened. Sometimes they get canceled. No point in getting stressed or upset about it. What will happen will happen. At this race, I had access to the VIP tent so I just went inside, stayed warm and dry, made friends and ate a bunch of good food. I went outside when they announced the race was starting. Not a big deal. Of course, I participate in a lot of events. Everyone that has been significantly affected has been a lower priority event. Sooner or later, it will affect a marathon and that will be hard after all the training to see it shortened or canceled. But it will happen if I do enough. I just pray it won’t be an issue in Wisconsin. I figure that I will only be taking one shot at an Ironman, so I will be at the mercy of the weather without the safety net of signing up for another event…


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