It was a foggy start to race #7, the Triathlon at Pacific Grove. Not only that, but the kelp seemed extra thick this year too!
It was great to be back in Monterey, the location of my first triathlon 2 years ago and a great benchmark to see how much I’d improved over the last couple of years and see if I could finally beat the 3 hr mark (my previous time here was 3 hrs 24 mins).
The Triathlon at Pacific Grove is renowned for its kelp crawl, the swim at Lover’s Point means you spend as much time crawling over or through the kelp as you do actually swimming. Last time around my wave didn’t start until 8:30am, so earlier waves of swimmers had cleared a channel through the kelp, this year, as a challenged athlete, I was in the first wave at 7:00am…that’s right, let the challenged athletes clear the kelp for everyone else!
Despite that I completed the 1.5 km swim in just under 38 mins, nearly 5 minutes faster than previous. After a quick run up the beach it was time to head out for the 40km bike. The bike loops around the course 4 times, which was very handy for pacing my ride as I aimed to beat 1 hr 20 mins – I had to do each loop in under 20 minutes.
The first loop was 18:01, nicely done, the second was 19:56, needed to pick up the pace a bit there, the third was 19:43, not too bad and then the final loop was 20:37, definitely starting to feel tired, for a total time of 1 hr 19 mins, just scraping under the 1 hr 20 min mark and beating my time of 2 years ago by about 7 minutes.
Now, if I wanted to beat the 3 hr mark then things were getting a little tight, last time it took me 1 hr 3 min for the 10 km run and as I started out the clock read 2 hrs 8 min – I had to pull the run in under 52 minutes, ouch!
The run consisted of 3 loops, so that meant each one had to be around 17 mins 30 secs.
Well the first was 17:42, that was cutting it fine, the second was 17:14, made up a few precious seconds and then I had to go all out for the last loop, for a 16:44 and a total time of 2 hrs 58 mins and 48 secs, beating the 3 hour mark I’d set myself and beating my previous time 2 years back by about 25 minutes…very happy with that!
I also finished first in class again, out of two of us this time…so if you’re a physically challenged athlete you just have to come and turn up at these events and you’ve got a good chance of getting on the podium, plus it’d be fun to have some competition out there.
You can view more pictures of my race on Facebook or watch me cross the finish line below (you’ll need to fast forward to the 3m 44s mark).
On the fundraising front, I just want to say thank you to my top donors this last month, Ken, Christian and Mike, thank you so much. I’m at the $5,500 mark with 8 races done, inching closer to my $10,000 goal.
By making a donation you will directly help a challenged athlete in need.
Help me raise $10,000 for the Challenged Athletes Foundation