Saturday, September 3, 2016

Block Island Tri / Run 4 Kerri Weekend

Block Island Triathlon
Block Island, RI
Saturday, August 6

Almost a month behind on blogs now.  Let's see if I can get caught up and stay caught up for a while.  A laudable goal.

This was my seventh consecutive Block Island Tri.  It's simply just my favorite tri, not only because the distance ratios are geared towards runners, but also it's a day away and a day with friends including the boat ride over and lunch afterward.

This year I was less than sociable on the ride over, as upon getting on to the 6am ferry, I lied down on a bench and promptly fell asleep for the ferry ride.  After getting setup in transition, checked in, registered, etc., went out for an easy 1-mile run with Mikey, Tommy, and Matthew.  This year would be the 2nd year in a row of high tide beach running.  At least this year they would keep to the full 4-mile course, which with high tide would mean running in the water through rocks in a short southern section of the beach.  I like a good challenge!
The gang's all here.  Just before the start of the tri.

Swim - 1/4 mile:  10:10, 166th out of 346.
Love the 50-yard running start on the beach.  After that, got into a groove and felt good the whole way.  As always at Block, you get swimmers doing the backstroke, taking breaks, etc., so there's more collision and going across people than normal.

T1:  2:09, 88th out of 346
Matthew started in the wave one minute behind me, but already at transition when I got there.

Bike - 12.5 miles:  38:28, 27th out of 346
I was really, really happy with my bike portion at Block.  I biked very little this summer and had low expectations.  Block has some tough corners and hills that really slow you down, but I finished pretty strong.

T2:  1:02, 73th out of 346.
Just don't know how I can get much faster, especially in T2 at this tri.  I'm not putting on running shoes, as I run barefoot on the beach.  Maybe run through transition faster?

Run:  30:44, 5th out of 346
Matthew was 1st in 28:31, the 2nd guy was over a minute behind him.  This was a really tough run, between the high tide running in soft, sloped sand, running through rocks and water, and headwind on return.
At about 1/4 mile in, you hit a section where due to the high tide being up on boulders, you have to run completely in the water and between rocks.  A big group of people in front of me just completely stopped and walked, which really annoyed me as they blocked my path and I won't be walking this or any other section.  Thus I dodged people by jumping between them, jumping over rocks, etc. On the way back hitting this same section, to avoid the same frustration and clogging, I went deeper in the water around the people.  This was up to about my thighs, so it was slow going.  I passed 100+ people and then stopped counting.  Before the turnaround, I saw my nemesis Jim Ortel had a huge lead on me and it looked dubious to catch him in the age group battle.
Turned around at the cone and went back at it.  Felt like I was in slow motion between the soft sand and headwind now.  I continued to pass many people, and ended up 2nd in my age group overall, having just passed the 3rd and 4th place before the end of the race.

Overall:  1:22:33.  11th out of 346.  2nd out of 46th in my age group.  Full results here.
Matthew was just 22 seconds behind me, and won his age group.  Tom was 7th overall, and Mike 37th.  Enjoyed a nice lunch at the Beachhead before ice cream and the trip home.  Another good day at the Block.  Count me in for next year.

Run 4 Kerri
Sunday, August 7, 2016
South Kingstown, RI

Another hot and humid day at Run 4 Kerri.  This was much less horrible than the weather at Blessing this summer, but still far from ideal conditions.  Legs were not recovered from racing just 24 hours earlier on Block Island, so not sure why I raced this, but it seems a tradition of late to double down on Block and Kerri.

Mile 1:  The only mile on the course that is mostly shaded.  Felt good.  5:46.

Mile 2:  The race is getting tougher now.  You're in direct sunlight, have two 90-degree turns and get out onto the dreaded Card's Pond Road.  6:08

Mile 3:  This mile is by far the worst.  Most of this is on the wide open, straight as an arrow, Card's Pond Road.  You're frying in the sun, and it seems to go on ad nauseum.  Towards the end of the mile, you turn in to a neighborhood and immediately start an uphill climb.  6:13.

Mile 4:  Although you start this mile on an uphill, you know it's the final mile.  Up through the neighborhood, before a mild descent to the finish line.  This is one of the few races that gives you ice cold water bottles as you finish, and it is much welcomed.  They used to rig up a fire hose that you could go under to cool your core, but alas that is no more.  5:55
Squinting in the direct sunlight.

Final:  24:07.  6:03 average pace.  24th overall.  1st in age group.  Full results here.

With our age group awards.

1 comment:

  1. Jeff-two days and two outstanding performances! I always enjoy the Block and the camaraderie that goes along with the event. Being able to come back and compete well the next day at Kerri is also quite commendable. Nice job!