By Duncan Purvis
I had a good weekend at Coronation!
This is the third year I have done it, first year I got a flat and came in around 2:06, last year I was about 2:02. I set out to try and get under the two hour mark. It was a gorgeous day… sunny and not too hot, not too cold. I love coronation for the participation it brings. experienced triathletes on $5,000 machines and first timers on beach cruisers. It’s got a very enjoyable, inclusive feel to it. Also, there is free Subway at the end. Or maybe its $90 subway cause that was the entry fee. Regardless, it tastes pretty good.
I was seeded as the first of six swimmers in my heat, so I was pleased that I could swim “my race” and not get caught up in the middle of the chaos that is often a pool swim. I was hoping for a sub 20:00 in the pool. So I hop in and focus on setting some good technique and rhythm. Well, that lasted about 20 metres and the woman behind me started slapping my feet with each stroke. So much for that strategy. I stopped for a second at the end and let her go by, but I was determined to keep up. It was probably good that she did. It gave me some incentive and someone to chase. I quickly felt my form and calm “technique focus” fade away into a thrashing mess, and by about 600 metres, she had gained about 20m on me. I managed to keep that pace though and finished at about 19:30, so was pleased with that. I also put my shoes on in transition faster than her so I felt vindicated.
The bike felt really good. I think the early season road racing helped! The uphill sections I was able to maintain a faster pace than I had in the past and my recovery time was good enough that I could really push pretty hard on the uphill and recover a bit on the ride down Groat Road. I finished in about 49 minutes, but that includes both transitions. My Garmin said 44, but the way coronation works is you pass over a strip coming out of the pool and then not again until you start on the run. A bit imprecise, but its the same for everyone.
The run, is my achilles heel, or arthritic knee, if you will. Years of skiing and numerous surgeries have made me a candidate for early knee replacement. I was trying to maintain about a 5:30 pace, but actually ended up at just over 39 minutes, which is around a 5:00 pace. To be fully honest, my garmin read 7.6 km, so I’m wondering if the course was a little shy of the 8 km promised. 🙂 No matter, a few advil later and the run was done!
Overall time was 1:48:18, so well under my goal and my best time at Coronation by about 14 minutes. I finished 10th in my age group, 66 overall…..All in all, very pleased with the race. Then I had Subway. Full Results here.