Knightdale Super Sprint 9/17/17
By Martin Stam
I like events like this because there are lots of first-timers. It is super inspirational to see folks getting into triathlon. Additionally, sprints are great because you get some awesome racing action and can be home by 10:30am! I’ve been trying to convince my friends and family to do one of these, but no success yet.
Now to my race report:
I am thankful that Knightdale is only 30 minutes from my house. This was the first race of the season where I arrived early enough to get set up, checked-in and warmed up, all without feeling rushed. Good time management on race morning is definitely a key to success. Often race sites can seem confusing and chaotic, especially for someone new to the experience, so it is always a great idea to familiarize yourself with all the information and directions.
In transition, I was on the same rack as the NC State triathlon team, but I didn’t let their matching uniforms intimidate me and I got a good spot right at the end.
It really does makes a difference in your confidence when you feel prepared and not rushed. I even was able to get a few technique and strategy pointers from my friends Marty and Cari in the pool before the start. The biggest piece of advice, however, came from my other friend Jonathan who told me that the course is actually surprisingly hilly for this area. Thank you for the heads up!
Once I got out on the bike, after mostly avoiding hitting my head on the lane lines of the pool swim, I realized that this was not a flat course by any means. But I also knew that it was pretty short, so I just rode as hard as I could and was able to pass a few other competitors.
The bike and run course share the same road going through a neighborhood and you actually pass the run turnaround, so I was glad to be able to see it and visualize running that distance.
The last bit of the bike was a steady uphill (did I mention that the course is not flat?), so I came into T2 huffing and puffing a little bit. The run is basically downhill out and uphill back, which was mentally challenging, but I had already seen the turnaround so I knew what was coming before the finish line.
It was a great event and I look forward to going back again!
Stay tuned for my blog post about sports psychology and race report from Kona.