Great Island Adventure Triathlon
Lock Haven PA
July 1st, 2017
2nd overall relay team
This was my fourth time competing in the Great Island Adventure Triathlon but the first time as a relay. I completed the 5K kayak leg and the 14 mile bike leg while the race director’s 11 year old son completed the run leg for me. The kayak leg is an out and back course around the Great Island on the Susquehanna River. This was only my second race competing in a surf ski. I had a slow conservative start which put me a little behind but as I gained confidence I picked up speed and made up time. I was 4 minutes slower than last year’s kayak split but that was to be expected as I learn to paddle the new surf ski which will be much faster than my 16′ kayak once I learn to paddle it a little better. The bike course is a double loop of 7 miles. There are some rolling hills in the first 3 miles but then the course flattens out. On my second loop I missed a turn and ended up off course. The turn was not marked at all and a lot of racers made the same mistake. I was told later a police officer was scheduled to be stationed at the intersection but did not show up or left. I added a full extra mile to my bike leg with the missed turn. My relay partner finished the race with a 24 minute 5K. Pretty good for an 11 year old. Because he is a minor I will not mention his name but he did a great job. All participants received long sleeve tri blend shirts and finisher pint glasses. Last year’s race raised over $8,000 for local charities and I am sure this year it was the same if not more. The race can be completed as a standard swim triathlon, kayak, or paddle board race. They even have shorter kids events the night before the main races. The race is about 4 hours from the Akron Ohio area but certainly worth the drive. I plan to return next year and hopefully once again compete in the solo division.
I raced at the Monroe Falls Triathlon last Saturday below are the results. Unfortunately I had a bike malfunction that cost me about 4 minutes on the ride but at least I was able to finish – guess you always have to look for the bright side!
26th Overall; 3rd in Age Group.
Total Race Time of 1:06:03
Glacier National Park 1/2 Marathon 6-24-2017
The National Parks started a race series which they are doing at many of the Major Parks to help promote the parks. 2017 was the first year for Glacier, and having been to Glacier many years ago- it was a great opportunity to come back.
The Hardest running race I have ever done. Finished 117th overall (out of 2100) and earned a medal for 2nd place in my age group. My Nephew Ryan who went with me had a fantastic race, finishing 39th overall, and 5th in his age group. Great weather, great hiking and spending time with Ryan made for a bucket list memory.
June 4th 2017.
Team Relay 3rd Place
Finish Time 1:06:01
This was my fourth year competing in this event but the first time competing as a relay team. This race is a 2 mile run, 10 mile bike and 2 mile run. Fellow Team ER member Carlo Buzzetta did the running legs while I completed the bike leg. The weather was in the 60’s with periodic light rain. Carlo completed the first running leg with a 7:32 mile pace and the second with a 7:49 mile pace. I completed the bike leg in a little slower time than I would had liked with just under an 18 mph pace. I believe the bike course had a few minor changes from the previous years. We finished third behind a couple of loaded teams. The winning relay team included a college track runner that averaged 5:32 mile pace for both run legs. NC Mulitsports always puts on a nice well organized race. Numbers were down a little this year but hopefully next year they will see better participation.
Laurel Hill Adventure Triathlon
Laurel Hill State Park
June 10th 2017
Finish Time: 1:58:01
Team Relay 3rd Place
This was my first time competing in the Laurel Hill Adventure Triathlon. The race consists of a 2 mile kayak, 8-12 mile mountain bike, and 5K trail run. Because of a continuing calf injury I was forced to compete in the relay. I completed the kayak and bike leg while a recent graduate and member of the Penn State Cross County team completed the running leg for me. This was my first time racing in a surf ski. Because I am still adjusting to the stability and learning to paddle the 19’2″ long boat I was a little tentative the first part of the kayak leg. The second mile I felt more confident and started making up ground while increasing speed. The mountain bike leg for the relay teams was an 8 mile course. It started with extremely hilly park roads that led to more hills on thick gravel trails, that turned into hilly mud covered trails finishing back on the roads into transition. I quickly realized that the street style tires on my 17 year old Gary Fisher would be no match for this course. 4 miles into the race while trying to climb a mud covered trail a branch lodged straight into my back derailleur. The branch bent and broke the derailleur. The bike leg became a nightmare after that. I had no gears and the chain came off about 15 times. Eventually I made it back to the roads where I managed to ride as long as I didn’t have to shift. My runner ended up completing the fasted run split in the entire race field, but it was not enough to make up for all of the time I lost with the damaged bike. We finished third overall in the relay 8 minutes behind the winners. Had my bike not been damaged I am certain we would have placed second and most likely first. Eddy’s was able to salvage the bike and replace the derailleur and derailleur hanger. This was a well organized race. Participation was a little lower than expected. The race director is looking to make some changes next year to increase participation. All proceeds of the race went to maintaining the park. I will certainly be back next year hopefully competing in the solo division and this time I will have a more appropriate bike for the course.
Black River Kayak-a-thon
Finish Time: 1:04:48
3rd place 6 mile 14’5″ and longer division.
The Black River Kayak-a-thon is an event to support and showcase the Black River recovery efforts in Lorain. The event in it’s seventh year offers a 12 mile marathon, 6 mile race, and 4 mile float. I competed in the 6 mile 14″5″ and longer boat class. I chose to use my Stellar S16 Advantage. Rudders were not allowed in any races other than the marathon so I felt this was a good choice. There were lots of boat classes and even paddle board options. The race starts and finishes at the Lorain Warf. The river here is deep and wide. The 6 mile course winds its way up river, around a buoy 3 miles out, and finishes at the same place the race started. The paddle out challenges with cross currents that really pull your boat off line if you weren’t careful. The return paddle which I thought would be much easier because it was down river was actually more difficult due to the heavy head winds that picked up. I was 4 minutes slower in the down river section because of the winds. The guy that finished fourth behind me had the exact same boat that I did so it was fun to race against him on even terms. He stayed with me for about the first mile 2 miles but then dropped way back. The river is full of wildlife including otters, blue heron, and bald eagles. The race was partially funded by a grant and they spared no expense thanks to sponsors on prizes. Everyone received participation t-shirts and safety whistles. Winners in all divisions received medals and various selections of kayak gear. Two kayaks were even raffled off at the end. This is a great event and I think with a few changes will grow to be a local favorite.
Twinsburg Du 6-4-2017
The main thing that keeps me racing- is that it pushes you well past anything you could do training alone. No other way to find your limits, and to push yourself well outside your comfort zone.
The race is a local 2 mile run- 10-mile bike – 2 mile run, threat of rain kept turnout low at 60 people. You would think that a short race is much easier – but the shorter races are actually harder. There is no pacing, it’s just all out from the start.
I joined Team ER members Carlo & Scott who were doing it as a relay
I ended up 12th overall, first in my age group
Scott and Carlo had a solid race, the rain held off- and Mickey did a great job on having a organized and well run event!
Mikes first marathon…time 4:52
Sweat Now Wine Later
Gervasi Vineyard Canton, Ohio
2 mile kayak and 2.5 mile run
Finish Time 17:48
12th Male Overall
Sweat Now Wine Later is a short fun race held at Gervasi Vineyard. This year’s race was especially short due to the cancellation of the kayak leg because of high fast water conditions. The race was changed to a short 2.5 mile run. The weather was cool mid 40’s and raining but that didn’t stop 300 dedicated wine lovers from getting to the grapes at the finish line! The run course is fast and flat all on crushed gravel trails leading back to Gervasi. This was a tough race for me as I have been dealing with a significant calf injury. I was determined however to compete and make it to the finish line. I started off strong and was at a 7:30 mile pace for the first 10 minutes of the run and then suddenly my calf completely strained and I was forced to walk. I did manage to run the last 200 meters into the finish shoot for a strong finish. It unfortunately wasn’t enough as I missed placing (top 10 males and 10 females) by 20 seconds. I can’t say enough about the job that Lisa and Steve at RunCanton do with organizing races. They always have great race swag! This race gave every participant a sweet tech shirt, $10 voucher for wine or food at Gervasi, and a finisher medal that doubles as a wine stopper. I recommend everyone head to runcanton.com and register for one of there events! You won’t be sorry! If you want to compete in next year’s Sweat Now Wine Later race you better register early as this year’s race sold out fast!
Grand River Canoe and Kayak Race
8.5 Mile Kayak Race
Finish Time 1:32:07
2nd In Age Division.
This was my third year in a row competing in this race on the Grand River. For the third straight year I finished 2nd in my age group competing in the 14′ foot and under kayak class. The race was postponed a week due to high water levels from heavy rains the weeks leading up to the race. By the time the new race date came the water was down to 2.5 feet. Water levels were much better than last year but still a little low in many areas frequently creating rock hazards. I got hung up on mile two on some rocks and it cost me about a minute of time to recover. This proved to be a costly mistake as I found out later I missed first place in my age group by 5 seconds. Several competitive kayakers took their chances on the rocks with their fast composite boats ultimately sacrificing the hulls of their boats to the river gods. They had fast finish times but weren’t exactly pleased with the amount of damage the river rocks had done to their expensive fast kayaks. I stuck with my molded slower plastic kayak more suited for the conditions. The weather was mid 50’s and raining which isn’t exactly ideal for a kayak race. The Grand River is a beautiful scenic river with amazing views of the cliff walls high above the valley. The highlight of my race was when a bald eagle flew about 20 feet above my head as it made flight down the river searching for a meal. Lake Metro Parks always does a nice job organizing this race.
Nordonia Duathlon: 2.5 Mile Run / 10 Mile Bike / 2.5 Mile Run – This was a very well run event by Champ racing. The running course was nice and flat with one short but steep hill to get the heart going. Bike course was comprised of flats will some gentle rollers and one nice climb. Very small number of participants but some very strong local athletes leading the pack. I placed 18th out of 35 with a finish time of 1:16.21.
Hinckley “Buzzard” Duathlon 4-30-2017
The Hinckley race is one of my favorites. It’s close to home, a great hilly loop, and this year the weather was perfect! I first did this race in 2004, and have done it almost a dozen times since then.
The first 5 k run starts out at the Lake parking lot, which means you are at the bottom of a steep hill. I tried to keep leaders in sight, but the top 10 slowly pulled away from me as we passed mile 2. I knew a few would be doing run only, so kept pushing, ended first run with a 20.48- a decent run, but well off my past races times. I had a fast transition, hit the bike and felt solid. They made a course change- we did 2- 7 mile laps, going up Ledge rd. (“The wall”) I guess its 14-15 % grade. I was able to pass a few people there, one interesting “Team Euphoria” rider had music blasting on his bike you could hear from ½ a mile away. I passed him on the wall- but could slowly hear the music catching me on the flats. He passed me and pulled away-whatever helps you get through I guess. Rest of bike went ok, with only a few people passing me – a couple were relay teams (hate the relay teams!). I passed another rider in transition- hit the last run, and was totally alone. Top riders had pulled out a huge lead- people behind me were way back- so a lowly finish. Second run was 23:30, for total time of 1:31. Good enough for first in my age group- and 12th overall.
Take a look around.