Home > Uncategorized > 2013 Smiths Falls Triathlon

2013 Smiths Falls Triathlon

So this is the Triathlon that in the past I looked to as my main summer event in a sense. As time has moved on and I have done more events I have found that over the last couple of years this one has diminished a bit in significance. With some very big changes in how the Tri is run this year it has certainly moved down a bit.

1st off due to changes in policy with Parks Canada they can no longer close the locks and thus restrict boat traffic on Sunday Mornings. Since the last thing you want is a 20 foot yacht slicing thru your swim leg the decision was made to run the Tri on Saturday after the locks close at 6pm.

Unfortunately the change was not communicated very well and was first communicated as a wow, look at this you can sleep in on Sunday kind of thing. Also this was done only a few weeks before the Tri so a lot of people had locked in plans that now needed to change. Not the organizers fault but I think they could have been a bit more open on the reasons. Due to this my Mom and Brother opted out of doing the Tri this year and that reduced my interest further. As you will see in coming posts, I definitely have filled the “gap” left open here with new events of interest.

One more thing, not 100% sure why since the locks were closed but they changed the bike course. The bike course was changed from the nice loop it was to an in and out straight leg, and shortened to 21kms as well from 28k. Maybe they needed to make sure folks ended before it got dark. There was NO mention of the reduced bike leg until you got to the Tri so I think a number of people were caught out on that. Since I make up time on the bike it also meant I could expect to end up lower overall.

Certainly it seemed to impact the numbers. In 2012 141 people did the Sprint Tri in Smiths Falls, in 2013 it was down to 107. If the Saturday night time stays will be interesting to see if the numbers go back up as it won’t be a surprise anymore. In many ways its great to have a Saturday night Tri as it gives you back Sunday etc. but also means you have to be careful not to overdo it during the day.

Setup

Setup was pretty easy as always. Since it was evening lots of people showed up early so a lot of slots were used but there were still plenty of slots left and I had a bit of extra room it seemed to lay my gear out. I had my Flo disc but noticed nobody else had a disc. Was there a rule change? The weather wasn’t an issue as it was calm. There was maybe going to be a bit of rain but nothing serious. Checked with some folks and nope no rule against it. So why no discs. I have my theories and you can read it later on.

However, and this was odd, you had to walk about 1km to a hotel to get your registration then walk back. What’s up with that? Then the swim start was back at the hotel so you did 3k+ of walking around before you set off.

Swim

I choose not to use my wetsuit.  The swim is pretty short at 500m and the run from the beach to the transition area is pretty short so decided I didn’t really need it. Now I have not been doing really any swimming, or running either, and just biking tons so wasn’t sure how my swim would be. Last year I did use my wet suit.

The current was a bit stronger due to all the rains but nothing that wasn’t manageable.

In 2012 I did this in a 12:13 (which includes transition time) and in 2013 I had a 13:54 so maybe was a bad choice? Being almost 2 minutes slower as you begin wasn’t the best. Still I was out of the water and onto the bike without too much fuss. Next year I will go back to my wetsuit.

Bike

Whoosh.. Love, love, love the bike leg. I have focused more on the bike this year and it showed. I took off like a rocket and just kept going. I did see one other person with a disc wheel so I guess it was fine.

I was passing everyone and averaged well over 38kph. I wanted it to be much longer, but it was over in a flash it seemed.

When you sort the rankings by bike leg this is what you get:

image

Second best time of the day, at 32:00, with one fast guy ahead of me and a dude 21 seconds behind. I think next year I can/will win the bike leg. But if you do the math at this point I was 3 mins of so back from the leader. Since this was a different course than last year no comparison can be made.

On the disc issue, this is what I think. People rarely seem to really figure out what works for them instead going with the herd, and lately everyone watches Tris on TV which are usually in professional events that restrict the use of disc wheels. So if Craig Alexander wins Kona on a Specialize Shiv with deep rims but not a disc, then deep rims most be best because EVERYONE had them. Zipp, Hed, Easton etc. But no disc. Can’t prove this and maybe I should ask people but I was surprised and a disc makes you go FAST.  The cost difference between a good set of deep rims and a disc isn’t that much and you go FASTER.

Anyways their loss and my gain.

Run

So by this time the race was over for me. I didn’t expect to do well in the run and I was about to go backwards, and I did.

But something odd happened, it didn’t hurt to run as much as I thought it would. I still didn’t run fast but I wasn’t as slow as I thought I would be and I enjoyed it. In 2012 after a lot of training and trying to improve was 26:56 and in 2013 ended up 27:59 so a minute slower but that’s not too bad considering.

Conclusion

In the end I wasn’t all that exhausted so didn’t “leave it all on the road” so to speak, and ended up 44th overall which I guess was disappointing but I didn’t feel that way. I came to ride and bike really and get some training as I ramp up for the main events later in the year and this one was a good one, and I only had to drive 5 minutes to get to it!!

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