I have said it so much that you are probably tired of hearing it, but triathlon day is the best day of the year at Las Catalinas. This year set yet another new high water mark. We had some 400 athletes (triathlon plus teams plus open water swimmers) plus families and friends, about 1,000 people in all.
The buildup really begins some weeks ahead of time, with athletes coming out to practice on the course. Then the day before the race everyone comes to check in and attend the pre-race meeting and dinner. All of our houses were packed. Race day itself gets an early start around 4:30 with people checking in bikes, and the race begins at 6:00, followed by the open water swims, the kids races at 4:00, and awards at 5:00.
Surely there is not a more beautiful, comfortable, and positive post-race scene anywhere in the athletic world. It is a picture of humanity at its best. And then the kids races! The highlight of the day!
Rom Akerson won the tri with a time of 2:05:46 – he is one of the top five or so athletes in the world in this discipline. The rest of us competitors did what we could, battling against our previous results, limitations, our age group competitors, and our fiends and frenemies. I was thrilled with my own result. No cramps, no misery, and just 136% of Rom’s time. A little faster than Martyn Hoffman (sorry Martyn). A best case scenario!
Here is a selection of my favorite photos from the day. You’ll find plenty more on the Las Catalinas Facebook page (including some fun videos) and then really lots more on the Triatlon Las Catalinas page.