Date: Saturday, May 14, 2011
Location: Park Rapids, MN
Weather: 41F; rain with sleet; wind from NE at 12 gusting to 20
Official Results: Overall results
Personal results: Done as relay with the Boy® (age 11)
Official Time: 1:20.27
Overall: 1st overall in Male Relay division
It was more spectacular weather for the best kept secret in Midwest triathlons, the Lakes to Pines Triathlon in Park Rapids, MN. In 2010 we were blessed with sunny skies, race temperatures in the 60s, and light winds. Maybe it was the weather in 2010 that led to a record sixty-three people entering. Maybe it was the weather that allowed seven males to go under the previous course record. Five females went under the previous female course record.
In 2010, the male class was won by Mike Fretland of Bismarck, ND. The female class was won by Kailee Fretland, wife of Mike. But they could not make the trip this year. Kailee is preggers with their first child and Mike had nesting duty this weekend. Nesting as in tiling, painting and many other items on Kailee's wish list.
In 2011, we were greeted with sleet. Hey, sleet is spectacular....right? Yep, sleet. Rain. Gusty winds. Temperatures in the low 40s. Without weather, we'd probably have had nothing to talk about.
But despite the weather, the fantastic team of Park Rapids Swim Boosters (it is a money raiser for the swim team) once again made all participants feel welcome and at home. I love this race. It is one of my favorites. There truly is a personal touch at work here. And that cannot be undervalued or overstated.
I also want to personally thank all the volunteers and the law enforcement officials. This is one smooth run affair and one very safe event.
Major news flash: this event is moving to June 16 in 2012. That is the tentative date. So circle your 2012 calendar now.
With no Fretlands to dominate the field, the male division favorite immediately fell to David Lewis (Nevis, MN) while the female favorite fell to Noelle Andrychowicz (Blaine, MN). In speaking to David before the race, he cursed out Mike for not coming as he wanted nothing to do with a 'favorite' tag. David has been dealing with some muscle spasms in a trapezoid muscle for a few months now. I wish David a speedy recovery. Not that he needed it. He lived up to his billing and cruised home to victory.
Male Overall Champion: David Lewis
On the female side, not only did Noelle win. But she set a new course record in doing so. Noelle took almost a minute off of Kailee Fretlands previous record set last year.
Female Overall Champion: Noelle Andrychowicz
Relay teams were very few this year but that takes nothing away from their combined efforts. Winning the CoEd Relay was the WaHeHe team of Rachel Wallace, Rodney Helm, & Louise Helm. Winning the Male Relay was the Wile E. Coyote & the Road Runner team of Brian Maas and Graham Maas (aka The Boy®). More on that last one later.
The performance of the day easily fell to Neil King who took 4th overall and won the mens 60-64 age bracket by twenty-seven minutes. King (61), of Nevis, winters in Sedona and he and I got to chat about wintering in Arizona after this event. That's my dream some day....winter or live down in the southwest.
Time for the personal report.
I've been addicted to speed my whole life. From the time I first strapped on a helmet at age four and sat in my Dad's sprint car (see photo below) I have wanted to take my body and anything on wheels as fast as I can. Back in the early 1960's, my dad was the North Dakota Class sprint car champion. You might say I was born into speed.
|My 1st speed workout. I'm wearing my helmet, safety first!|
I went to the Boy® and asked him if he would like to do a triathlon relay with me. I would swim and bike and all he had to do was to run a 5K. He thought about it for exactly 0.00014 seconds. The speed gene does not skip a generation, you see. He was in. Not only was he in, he wanted to do a double: Compete with the Old Man on a relay and then come back an hour later and do the kids events. To the tape:
Swim - 500 yards (pool)
Official Time: 08:32 (9th fastest swim overall)
Previous PR at this course: 07:49
I knew I would be a bit slower this year since I've only been in the water since April 13 after a 38-day layoff due to the fracture. So you know what? I'm happy with the result. It was just fine. My actual time was 08:12 in the pool. The official time is marked once you hit T1 just like any other tri. My goal was to go under 8:40.
Official Time: 02:16
Previous PR at this course: 0:52
Hey, it was cold. So I (and 98% of the others) stopped to put on socks, gloves, and a long-sleeved upper garment. Let me tell you.....it was worth it to lose that time.
Bike - 14.7 Double Loop Course
Official Time: 42:00 (21:00 MPH; fastest overall bike split of the day)
Previous PR at this course: 39:06 (22.6 MPH)
So, I'm into the second loop of the bike and my legs are completely numb. My socks and shoes have been soaked since twenty seconds into the ride and now my face is stinging. Why is my face stinging? I can't figure it out. Then it dawns on me. Sleet is hitting my face. White pellets from Heaven. Jumping Jesus on a pogo stick what did I get myself into?
But other than the gusty wind (up to 20 MPH), the sleet, the fact that my feet are blocks of ice.....I'm rather enjoying myself. The race director had one of those portable radar units placed on the back side of the loop as you descend a small hill and I'm trying to get it to read 23 MPH as I head into the wind. I succeed. Small victory!
Just as with the swim, I have only been riding since April 13 so to come away with the fastest bike split of the day in very poor conditions? I'll take it. Even though I know Mario & Adam & William are snickering!
Official Time: 00:26
Previous PR at this course: 0:51
This was a piece of cake. Ride in. Rack bike. Slap the Boy's® hand. Head inside, grab some dry clothes and go find the Boy® on the run.
Run - 5K
Official Time: 27:13 (8:44 pace)
Previous PR for the Boy®: 27:44
So my son (he's 11) does me proud by racing in poor conditions and runs a PR to boot. I had to get special permission from the race directors (Thanks Glen and Lori!!) to allow him to run as the adult event rule is 13 yo and over. Since the run is a closed course, they allowed it.
I'm jogging out to meet up with him on the course and everywhere race volunteers and marshals are telling me, "Graham was flying when he went by" and "Graham was looking so strong" and of course the girl volunteers were saying "Graham was running really fast and he is SO cute". He has been growing his hair out, Justin Bieber style. So I teased him afterwards that the girls were really excited that Justin Bieber was in the race.
Afterwards, the Boy® had about 75 minutes to recover prior to the kickoff of the kids event. He is waiting at poolside when the announcements for the adult race begin. When they announced us for winning the male relay division, he was on cloud nine as he walked by his fellow kid competitors to pick up our plaques.
Now then, no one tell the Boy® that we were the only male relay in the event. All he knows is that he was part of the Big Boy and Girl event and he brought home the victory for his dad who is hurt. This is one of the special memories that last forever. I encourage all Tri-Geeks with kids to plan a few races each year to do a relay with your child and/or spouse. It is special and something you will never forget and neither will they.
Note - Tri-Geeks have strong offspring. Take note Of Jace Minelli's 23:50 5K recently.
The Boy® did well in the kids event. This year they split the kids into two age categories: 9 and under and 10-12. The bigger kids swam 100-yards instead of 50-yards and biked 1.10 miles instead of 0.48 miles. The Boy® was 2nd overall out of the water and that's the way he finished. He had a PR split of 1:26 in the 100 yard swim, looked real good on the bike. On the run, he ran tactically which pleased me. He knew he could not catch the lead boy and kept a watchful eye on the next runner behind him. He had used up all his legs in the 5K so he ran a smart kids race.
|Maas Family Hardware from Lakes to Pines|
Next family goal: We will get the Well Kept Wife™ involved in a multisport event within the year. Either solo or as a family relay. Alas, she had to remain home for this one as we had a niece graduating from Macalaster on the same day. But she is still running and has the bug in her since placing well in her first two events last year in Fargo and Arizona.
As for me, I was surprised that I was able to run a mile with the Boy as he finished his 5K. So......if I can start running soon I plan to still keep Apple and Pigman on my calendar and do them to try and get back into run shape. We'll see. If you see me at these events, that will be a good sign.