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Race Result

Racer: Stuart Brandt
Race: Eagleman
Date: Sunday, June 10, 2007
Location: Cambridge, MD
Race Type: Triathlon - Half Ironman
Age Group: Male 40 - 44
Time: 6:19:42
Age Group Place: 206 / 229
Comment: Probably won't see conditions this ideal again

Race Report:


Last year's Eagleman was only my 2nd 70.3 race, and while I saw some improvement there over my prior half, there was a lot that left me downright dissatisfied. Both the swim and the bike just beat the @!$# out of me last year. With IMFL on the schedule for this November, improvement at Eagleman was an important benchmark goal for me since it's probably the closest in terms of course conditions that I'll see this year. Like last year, prerace evening consisted of putting up the tent at Tuckahoe State Park, making pasta dinner over a campfire, and turning in early. Up at 4am to start the GI system going, cheering section + dog pile into the car at 4:30, and arrive at the race site with about 1 hour to setup and warmup. Pros off at 6:45, all 228 M40-44's off at 7:05.

Swim (32:25):
Conditions were way better than last year. Very little chop in the Choptank river this year and not a single sea nettle encounter. If it takes dropping $14 (Safe Sea) for a little sea nettle insurance, that's fine by me. Not a whole lot to say about the swim otherwise. I was never able to break free of the crowd, so I spent most of it stuck in traffic. I had some kind of issue with my right shoulder that never worked its way out, so it's just as well that I didn't push the pace. Came out of the water feeling pretty good.

T1: (5:34):
It's often disappointing to see a long run into T1 factored into my swim times for a race, but this one was the exact opposite. Timing mat was way down by the boat exit. Wouldn't mind seeing even more improvement here, but I'll take 1:19 over last year.

Bike: (2:54:34 - 19.4mph)
As was the case with the swim, conditions were much more favorable this year -- not much wind and not much sun. My plan was to take the first 3mi to let the legs warm up and just try to bring the HR back down into Z2. By the 2nd mile, though, I was doing 21mph without really working hard. In hindsight, I suspect the first half was wind aided, but my first hour on the bike was the fastest hour in *any* distance race I've done. By 1:30, I started doing the math and thought "holy s***, my long term goal of sub 3hr for 56 mile can happen here". 2 hours in, still feeling pretty good, more math, still a hair above 20mph avg, "whoa...the when-pigs-fly goal of sub 6hr 70.3 race can happen here if I catch a good run". I'm going for it! Let it all hang out and pay for it later if that's what happens! Pushed the remainder of the bike pretty hard on what seemed like the toughest section. Not sure if it was a headwind, or the not-so-smooth road surface, but I was struggling here. At 2:30, things started to tighten up and my stomach stopped wanting to take in fuel. Bad sign. I backed off here knowing that my 20mph ride was simply not in the cards for this race. Time to see if I could recover what I stole from my run.

T2: (6:34)
OK...so that question was answered. I was not going to catch a good run. Spent a fair amount of time in the portajohn trying to see if that would help.

Run: (2:40:37)
About half a mile in, my gut was just not going to let this happen. I'm still a bit puzzled over this one because I've taken in lots more solids in past races but yet this race where I did mostly liquids/gels is the first one where I felt like my gut was going to explode. Resorted to walk 10, run 20 for the first hour. Grabbed a banana figuring that perhaps my Thermolytes weren't giving me what I needed. That might have helped because about 20min later, I was able to switch to a walk 2, run 10 pattern. Unfortunately that was as good as it got. Frustrating...because it hurt like hell, but nothing wanted to come out either direction. It was a little disappointing to watch all my super secret goals that popped up mid-race wash down the drain, but I am more than happy to establish a new PR, avenge last year's swim, and catch an awesome bike leg. Overall, I'm feeling pretty positive about Florida.