Wow! I got to swim Alcatraz, how cool is that? As a swimmer, it's something I've always wanted to do, and now I have, yeah! Race morning we were loaded up on a boat and taken out to Alcatraz island. As the pros got their 'swim instructions' to follow the lead boat, the lady told us the water was warm this morning...since when is 59 degree water warm? Anyways, due to currents and tides, we had to follow the lead boat...or we'd be swept away and most likely not make it to shore anywhere near the transition area. We jumped off the side of the boat and away we went. I did not sight for the first 30-40 strokes and then looked up and couldn't even see the lead boat, it was crazy, we'd moved so far with the current while swimming straight! Needless to say, this made for an adventurous swim that I loved!!! I came out of the water first and was met by the cool air temps. I'd worn arm warmers under my wetsuit, so I was good there. I also had gloves hooked to my bike to put on and then toe warmers inside my toe covers (and my feet were still cold!) Once on the bike, it was time to tackle the hilly and technical course. Towards the midway point of the 1st climb, Tenille and I engaged in our battle royale that would last until the finish line. I would pass her uphill and she would fly by my on the descents (guess I need some work there, especially on the tri bike!) There was a flat out and back portion and I put my head down and put a gap on Tenille. Back on the hills, I knew she was chasing hard as were all the other women out there. I came into T2 with about 20sec lead and took off running on numb feet. I didn't get a chance to check out the run course prior to the race, so I was running a bit blind. Around 2miles, Tenille came running up, passing me on a climb but then on the long downhill before reaching the sand ladder I flew past her (just the opposite of the bike :) ) We started the sand ladder together and man, she took off! It was my first ever encounter with the sand ladder, and hindsight tells me I might have taken the wrong approach by trying to use the rope?! Anyways, once I reached the top, Tenillle had a decent gap on me, so I charged on hoping I would close the gap by the finish line. I was reeling her in and had the gap down to about 10sec and was closing fast...but the finish line was also approaching fast. I tried to take it up another notch, and BOOM! I totally tripped over my own feet, instinctively did a somersault and then did a bit of a face plant right in front of millions of people. In the scramble, I lost ground and more importantly my momentum...but I jumped back up and gave it my all to the finish line. A close 2nd place finish! All in all, a great day out there, and a reminder that I am on track coming back from surgery and a crazy summer! Can't wait to break the tape though!!! Congrats to all the girls and guys who raced out there!
Huge THANK YOUs to Terry Davis and his Tri-California crew for putting on a phenomenal event and to Bear and his girls for hosting Randy and I...we had a blast with ya'll!! Hope to be back again soon.