Sunday, September 13, 2009

Pumpkinman Triathlon

This weekend felt like summer again...

...but I instead I have to go to work tomorrow. The first couple of weeks back is a bit of a shock to the system!

At the last minute Janda decided to go to the Pumpkinman race in Maine instead of traveling all the way up to Canada. We were rewarded with beautiful weather, a great race and a post-race meal that was outrageously delicious.

Luckily Janda knows the race director (Best race director ever? She gets my vote!), so he was able to get in the race and get a homestay, which is always more comfortable than a hotel. With that in place, we headed up to Maine on Saturday afternoon in the pouring rain! Poor Crystal was trying to follow us, but I imagine it was hard with the downpours. After an unnecessary (my bad!) detour to get gas, we made it to Maine in no time.

We got our stuff settled in with the homestays and headed out to registration and to drive the course. After about 10 U-turns- street signs are very hard to see in Maine apparently- we did the loop of the bike course and headed to dinner. We went to what must be Kat's favorite restaurant, since she has her own special vinegar in the kitchen, and enjoyed a great meal and pre-race nerves with a few other athletes. Back to the homestay and sleeping by 9:30, I think that's some kind of record for us.

I was AWAKE at 4:10 this morning, ready to get up. I waited for Janda to get up since I figured he'd need all the sleep that he could get. After a quick breakfast, we headed out to Spring Hill to get set-up, etc... It was a cool, foggy and damp morning. At 6am I was regretting not bringing more clothing, and I was wearing a jacket and pants! Luckily, just like the announcer called it, the fog cleared only moments before the race began and had cleared out completely as the last waves were finishing up. It actually ended up being hot towards the end of the race.


Cold, gray, rainy day in transition


The foggy pond before the race


Swim start

Janda was hanging onto the back of the pack for loop 1 on the swim. He ran by me, dove back into the water and finished up loop 2 strong.


Running out to loop 2

I could tell that Janda was looking good on the bike and by the start of loop 2 on the bike, he had pulled into 3rd with 2nd in his sights. He was a little bit cranky when he rode by, so I knew he was having a good race!


Turning onto loop 2


Coming into transition

I headed back to transition and saw Janda pull up in 2nd, with 3rd hot on his heels. Janda had a 7 minute gap to the leader, so I knew it would be a tough day out on the run. I got a ride in a golf cart (thanks Kat!) to go see Janda and then before I knew it we were in Jeff's truck, flying around the course, cheering on all the elites- especially Janda of course! After that we headed back to transition to see the finish. Janda had a great run, cutting about four minutes into the leader (Tony DeLogne- who also won the sprint yesterday!!!) and finished in 2nd in 3:57.


On the run around mile 8


In the finish chute

After last week's mishaps, it was great to see Janda have a good experience. And to top it off, one of Janda's athletes, Crystal, won the women's race! He also had another podium finish with Dawn in the Women's 30-34 and 2 4th places: Greg in Men's 30-34 and Maris in Women's 35-39.


Enjoying the turkey dinner

After the race was by far the most amazing part of the day- Thanksgiving Dinner! There was a simply fantastic turkey dinner with all the trimmings as the post-race meal! Perhaps it was fatigue and dehydration, but it was the best turkey dinner I have ever had. One of the reasons that it's fun to stay home and race local is that we get to see everyone that we know. There are always a bunch of the athletes that Janda coaches, plus all of Janda's competitors who we have gotten to know over the years and it's great to see everyone and catch up.


Crystal on top of the podium


Janda on the podium

After the award ceremony, Janda and I packed up and headed out. On the way home we stopped at the outlets (another reason I love it when he races in Maine!) and Janda got the suit for the wedding. I can't believe that we went to Banana Republic and Janda came home with three things and I was empty handed! Next time, I guess...

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