Saturday, March 2, 2013

The Double Duathlon – Troy

March 2nd, 2013 – Granite Bay, CA
Run 2m – Bike 6.5m – Run 2m – Bike 6.5m – Run 2m





Robin and (1/2 Marathon) Karen Nickel, Rich Alesci

The first multisport race of the season, so of course I'm feeling rusty and looking forward to getting a lot of transition practice in this run-bike-run-bike-run event.  It's a beautiful day.  I ride 10mi to Granite Bay, which is mainly down-hill, so it's a nice warm-up.  The transition is very small as usual for these early season TBF races.  No pressure, no stress race.

I see Dave, his son-in-law, Steve, and his wife, Francie, volunteering as they do so often.  The TBF Racing owners are working hard: Mark is announcing and Bill is running around race directing.  Soon our friend Rich Alesci finishes the 1/2 Marathon with Leonie and their son, Reed, meeting him with loud cheers. And then our teammate,  Karen Nickel, also finishes.  It's a tough trail run and they both did great.  Our girls run over to see Leonie, she's always great fun to see at races.

I do my warm-up run and drop the kids off at the "hot corner" where they will be "helping" Dave and Steve direct runners, biking, cars where to go.  They've got their chairs so hopefully they'll just stay out of the way.  They're great sports.

Robin & I line up together.  We see our friend, Jody, and join together to pray for the race.  Most of all we want to compete for Christ, setting a good example and aiming to please Him over just going fast.  My goal is to take the first 2mi run loop easy and pick it up each one, hopefully negative splitting the last one.  The bike… just go hard.

Run #1
Go!  It's a nice straight-away start along the beach before it goes onto the single-track trails.  A 1/4 mi into it I'm 13th.  Some are way ahead.  Wow, they're starting fast, but I'm sticking to the plan.  It's a fairly flat loop, easy to follow and fun twists and turns.  I get water and every opportunity.  It's a warm day after months of cold.  I come into transition in 9th.

Bike #1

I fly by the girls and they cheer, and Dave, too.  I like this course, it's technical.  I'm riding well and feeling comfortable on the tri-bike.. which I haven't ridden much lately.  I only have a couple sharp turns which I don't take perfectly.  I pass a couple guys and go back and forth with one for a while.  I try to take advantage of every corner, taking the best lines and also focusing on the 180-turn-around.  It all goes great and I push the last 1/2 mi into the wind to coast down into transition.. after another great cheering from Dave, Steve and the girls.  After the bike I'm in 6th.

Run #2

This run is feeling hard right out of transition.  I'm next to a guy that's pushing it pretty hard.  I pass him on the downhills and he passes me on the up and jokes about my long legs being great for down but he wouldn't want to lift as high as I have to on the ups.   We talk as we wind through the trails.  He's in the next age group up so he says now we can push each other without trying to kill each other.  He's running well but I'm feeling really good about the plan and motivated to push myself.  I take a Hammer gel and pull ahead at the 1/2-way aid station and finish a good distance ahead of him and in 5th place.

Bike #2

I hope to match the first bike effort.  It was a good one.  I know the sharp corners well now and take each one perfectly.  I'm looking for the leaders.  There's 2 far ahead and then I see 3rd place.. but where did 4th place go?  I see Robin heading out and she gives me a wave.  So great to be able to race together.. I really look forward to seeing her smile when we pass, and knowing she's having fun and doing well. Coming back to transition, Dave gives me the number 4 for 4th place.  Somehow I'm 4th. Well, that's good.

Run #3

It's nice knowing this is it, I can give it my all.  I think it's a negative split effort.  I look to the 3rd place guy, quite a bit ahead, but I still go as hard as I can.  Still getting water each time.  I tell one of the volunteers to cheer for Robin when she comes by.  I'm finishing strong and really happy about my effort and performance today.  I'm thanking God for letting it go so well for the first race of the year.  Transitions were good, equipment worked well.. great experience!

I finish in 4th, and 2nd overall for the individuals.  The first 2 guys were part of relay teams.  I gather up the girls and we put ourselves in position to cheer for Robin.  I'm surprised to see another woman already at the finish line… a few minutes before I would have expected the top women's time to be.  And there's Robin.  Anna runs with her and then Ariel jumps in… almost getting left behind.. but then picks it up and they all finish together.  The other girl had somehow made a mistake on the course missing a few miles so Robin was the winner!

Robin biked home as a cool down and I ran with the girls on their bikes for my cool down.  We went all over the mtn bike trails by Granite Bay and had a great time… we lost track of time and came back to see everything packed up and gone… including my bike almost.  The race directors are great and stashed it for me.  Thanks God for a great family day!




Age Group





Bike Run

1/2 Mara

1:38:44 M30-39 3rd






KAREN NICKEL 1/2 Mara 1:51:42 W30-39 2nd









M40-49 2nd 13:31 18:53 14:03 19:50 13:18


TRI 1:30:14 W30-39 1st 14:36 22:22 15:39 22:36 15:02