After a brief three days back home after USAT AG Nats, I flew out to Portland Maine then drove to Old Orchard Beach to race the first Rev3 Maine. Keep in mind that Nationals consisted of a back to back Saturday-Sunday Olympic-sprint distance races. It’s good I recover fast and smartly thanks to NormaTec. And that I do my best to race as many Rev3 races as possible.
Nothing too exciting pre-race. A quick run after I got settled in the host hotel, which was the quintessential beach hotel. Plus it was less than half a mile from tradition and dumped out right into the beach to swim start. Perfect set up. But yeah…pre-race days… Easy run Thursday, Friday I got to meet the amazing (and famous) Jen Small; a local Rev3 teammate who let me join her posse for a quick swim along the [virtually the same path] of the race. After that, I found a grocery store to stock up for the weekend…which may have still led to no less than two more trips to the grocery over the weekend… Saturday I picked up my athlete packet, and saw just how many people were really at this event. Something like 1200 people for the races, a STACKED pro field, and the locals were all buzzing with excitement. I grabbed Dixie (my QR) from Mike and Harv, a couple of friends from back home who offered to tote her up to Maine since they were driving up anyway. Major kudos to them for relieving the headache that is always getting you bike ready to fly. After an early dinner, I hit the pillows hard excited to race the next morning.
It may be weird, but I really like ocean swims. Something about being dressed like a seal swimming in open waters with what we hope are friendly critters beneath us adds some extra excitement. The rectangle swim (minus one side) wasn’t as fast as I had expected based on the current I found during the practice swim because it was later in the day (or something). But I still came out of the water in 24:30, which is another PR on the swim thanks to my BlueSeventy HELIX. After the (according to my Garmin) .44 mile sprint up to transition, it was off on the bike.
I wanted to prove that I held back at Nats last weekend, so I just hammered the whole way on the bike. Well almost. One volunteer did attempt to direct me around a turn and into an oncoming Buick’s grill. Then I had to drop back after being passed…then passed again…and again?! This was the second group of 9 or so athletes riding in a group that passed me, this time at mile 22, and I made sure I let them get their three lengths ahead before I went after them. From what I could tell, the refs were all out on the half course, or shadowing the pros [individually]. Eh…what are you going to do. I came in a little under three minutes behind the next person in my AG (in that group), so even with that drafting penalty, it wouldn’t have factored into anything. Though maybe I could have found another gear if I would have seen another person just 200 meters in from of me… Oh well. The run!
This course coulda/shoulda/woulda been a negative split. But it wasn’t. While the run was great because of the out and back letting you see where you are placed, and the mile or so on trail, I still hit a bump around mile 4. I hate running downhill, and the downs today killed my legs. Mile 5 came and I was shot. My pace didn’t slow much, but all the bounce from my stride was gone, leaving me to run my slowest 10k in a long while. I ended up getting passed by five people on the run, all of them in the last mile and a half. Still working on that last kick where I really make it hurt the last mile. Maybe I can get ahold of Javi Gomez and ask him if he’s figured out any secrets yet. I came in at 2:17:36, cutting off 0:02:05 from last weekend’s Olympic distance at Nationals, and 17th over all (1 girl finished in front of me…passed me in the last quarter mile…)
For a first year race, this event was freakin amazing. I know I overheard many of the locals already taking about how excited they were for Rev3 to come back the next year. I feel Rev3 will be around at OOB for a while, and with it being a beach location with an ocean swim, I can tell you right now that barring anything crazy, I’ll be back for the next round.