Not living near a lake and absolutely detesting running, due to the same old foot saga I had more than enough excuses to capitalize on the bike, except for the fact that I broke the joker on August 21st, just 2 days before my crash a year ago (it's pretty obvious I should not ride the joker this week in the future).
On Saturday morning, the day before the race, the joker was fixed. It was better than ever and I longingly took it out for an albeit short 15 mile test ride in the morning before heading to Cedar Point. Sitting on the joker felt like home and my legs felt great. It took all I had not to "rip it" that morning and open 'er up.
We hit the expo first, so we could make the earlier mandatory athlete meeting. There was lots of nervous energy and excitement in anticipation for tomorrow's race. Rev had a green screen set-up this year for the athletes to have a little pre-race fun and we couldn't resist. Tomorrow we would swim, bike run, but today we would bumper cars!! We couldn't pass up the chance to do the "deuces" sign for my niece, G.
We then racked our bikes in transition for the evening. I covered the seat and handlebars just in case as there was a chance of rain. I also hoped treating the joker well the night before would assuage him to treat me well tomorrow (after barely 1 year I have been through more with that rotten S.O.B. than most people go through in a lifetime on a bicycle, including crashes, flats, broken parts, etc...). We had suffered through a lot together and tomorrow I knew would be a sufferfest but hopefully not in vain.
We checked into the "spooktacular" hotel and took some silly photos before dinner.
Then we headed to Sortino's to meet Cash. He was doing the full distance again. There was a moment of sadness as I thought of DaisyDuc and how the 3 amigos had not been whole all summer (due to me, not racing) and the laughs of last year I had experienced with them. She would not make it for my race tomorrow, but she would be there in time to drink beer and celebrate as we cheered Cash on through the miles of the marathon.
|We jokingly, struck a pose similar to the year before and got SG to sub for Daisy.|
|2012 3 Amigos Whole & Full :)|
|There was a moment of confusion due to the photobomber (pay him no attention), but it all worked out in the end.|
Sunday morning came all too fast for me as I slept like crap (maybe 3 hrs). I took a hot shower in hopes of waking my butt up for the race, had some crappy coffee and (2) instant oatmeals before cracking my ankle on the end of the bed (then I was awake -- son of a b^tch did that hurt!!)
The humidity was high, but the wind was in full effect at 6:00am when we left the hotel. It was way warmer than last year at this time of the morning. We got to the race and started setting up our gear. Roark was definitely more excited and nervous than me. I knew my race would start with the bike and end with the bike the rest was just stuff I had to do in between like going to the bathroom, ultimately you want to pee, but before you do you have to find a toilet and sit down and then when you're done it's still not over because you have to wipe and wash your hands, but honestly all you really cared about was peeing!! You get the drift. There is always a moment of ten on racing morning when I think of pulling out of the race and DNSing. I couldn't come up with any legit reason, so I left my bike racked until it was too late and they closed transition.
The swim got moved to the bay so I decided to drop shoes at the swim exit as the run would be 3-4 minutes being as it was somewhere around 0.3 miles to transition. We were going to have to swim through the marina of boats on the right with rocks on our left and then beyond that the break wall would be a crap shoot if we would have calm waters. I was also unfortunately, in the last wave and was going to have to fight my way through not only the water, rocks and boats, but also the slower swimmers. The only good thing was it was a time trial swim start, 2 at a time every 3 seconds. I lined up for the swim start with a girl named "Tara" who was nice enough to zip me up. As we moved closer and closer to the front I thought "I hope these goggles don't leak, since we have no warm-up" and "just step out of line and DNS because this is gonna hurt a lot." I got closer and closer to the water and held my ground until....