Bradenton, FL OneOOne Race Report (DNF)
Yes, somehow I made a wrong turn. I chopped off roughly 1800m on that first lap. The strange thing is that I then made the same wrong turn two more times without anyone stopping me (which is how I realized I was off course, I went through 50 miles – 80k – in roughly 74.5km). Then, realizing I was short, I was very careful heading into that area where I turned the previous times, and I saw cones continuing up the road. I am sure they were there the whole time, but as Dan Empfield said about these kind of in-race mishaps, oxygen is going elsewhere. So at the end of three short laps, and two regular length laps, I checked in with Mark Montgomery (monty from Slowtwitch, who was there doing live coverage), and then the race officials, to double check my suspicions that I had in fact cut the course, which Monty confirmed. So I excused myself from the race, as the rules say cutting the course is an automatic DQ, and I couldn’t figure out how I could really “rejoin” the race in any sort of fair fashion.
How I made the wrong turn the first time, I honestly don’t remember. There were police officers at the intersection, so I couldn’t tell you if I followed a hand signal meant for a car, or if I perhaps followed someone else, or if I just thought I saw a turn arrow and followed it. Again, oxygen going to the legs, not the brain. But I did, and since it was the first loop, I then just registered that turn as the turnaround, leading to two more “wrong laps.” I don’t blame anyone except myself. It was a bit of a disappointing end to what was shaping up to be, I thought, a pretty good day. Through those first three laps, I was up over 42.0kph avg speed, so I was catching the field in terms of relative speed.
The big problem, in retrospect, was that I lost David Thompson’s feet (I led him lap one, then he lead lap 2, then I got bounced off when we started lapping AG’ers and it was a bit of a cluster at a turn buoy. Though as my swimming fitness improves, I will be able to bridge that gap as I did the small gaps that formed during the first two laps). But I was only about 2 minutes down on the lead men (one minute down on Thompson, the eventual winner, all in the last 500m or so) out of the water. But had I come out with David Thompson, I would have ridden with him and not missed the turn, or we would have both missed it. So more swimming…. 🙂
Plan is now, tentatively, to race Disney 70.3 then do the OneOOne in Clearlake, CA on June 10th, so another chance for redemption, and probably a bit easier one-two combo of races as opposed to doing this race and then the Disney 70.3 race two weeks later…
Here is my trusty new Trek, which was awesome flying down the course. According to Dan Empfield of SlowTwitch, “the bike wants to get to the finish line so bad, it is prone to turning early!” 🙂