Saturday;
Got to the Quassy park at 12:30 or so.  Flew through registration pick up. Met a few people, got some extra tickets so the kids all got to ride the rides for free.  Sat at the pro interview thing after walking around the expo getting free samples and having Kelly drool on the ‘pretty pink bikes’.  Then we did the kids adventure race.  All six of us running around the park to various check points with misc ‘tasks’ to do at each one (ie picture, big slide, exercise, get wet at the water park, chug a Gatorade).  Culminating with a run down the finishers shoot.  It was a lot of fun!  Then I checked my bike into transition and we took off to the hotel.  Had some fantastic Italian at some restaurant that I don’t know the name but I highly recommend you find it…. Back at the hotel we slapped on my temporary tattoo race numbers (they don’t smell as nice a Sharpie on race morning, something I enjoy) and like a true “Ironman” was in bed promptly at 8:00pm. 
 
Sunday:
4:30am, alarm goes off and my feet hit the floor.  Do the usual morning stuff.  Load the van up, and get the kids around.  5:15am had the family in the van and standing in Dunkin Donuts looking for that morning fix.  The kids were happy because their reward for getting up and around good was some donuts.  Mom and Dad had a cookies and cream power bar and a coffee.  Yummy!  Drove the 25minutes to the park with no traffic.  Parked close by and found a porta john at the far edge of the parking lot that didn’t have a line (second time for those counting).  My bike was about 30ft from the bike in and out of transition, so it was quick for me to put my site together, pump up some tires and bail.  Walked around with the wife and kids for a while since my wave wasn’t scheduled until 7:04 and it was only 6:15ish.  Saw what was likely the longest porta john line in history and chose to make the walk to the other side of the park (a whopping 1/4mile at best) and hit up those johns that were clean and had NO line (#3).  Found a dry spot and put on the wetsuit and headed back to the swim start to get in the water for my first open water swim practice of the year.  Turns out you don’t forget a great deal.
 
Race (finally)
 
Swim 1.2miles:
Pro men went off, then 3 minutes later the pro women.  13minutes later the first wave of age group men went off, 149 M35-39.  Big group.  My group, M30-34, was next with a few less at 102.  Start was a beach entry, meaning we get to run into the water making fun splashing and then dive in and start swimming.  Felt strong and smooth swimming and for a long time I was off the front.  It wasn’t until we turned the first bouy and I got a little off course thanks to the sun being squarely lined up with the bouys so I couldn’t see them, that I got passed.  By then we were mixed well into the first wave of guys also.  Turned the second bouy and headed home and was surprised how good I was feeling since my total swim mileage for the past few months was being double during this swim.  Got out of the water and started heading to T1 (10th in Age, 38th OA Time, 29:42)
 
T1:
It was a long(ish) run, but thanks to the close proximity to the exit everything went smoothly.  Took a little too long getting the wetsuit off, but the rest was smooth.  Time from water to bike mount was 1:32.
 
Bike 56miles:
Flying mount went smoothly, and my biased spectator wife said it was the smoothest flying mount out of all of them! (thanks dear!)  We’ll call out the rider that was wearing CRT colors later….. yeah, she saw you!  Knowing the bike course and all it’s very hilly glory, and knowing the run was equally hilly, I chose to swap out the cassette for an 11-28 so I wouldn’t fry my legs for the run.  I took it easy for the longest time ever.  Letting guys go by me and not chasing them was likely the hardest part of this whole race!  As for the effort level, I tried NOT to push it too hard.  Sure I was moving along, but definitely riding at 80% or so and for once, spinning up the hills in that big 28 when needed.  This all proved to be a good plan as mile 40 on the bike was when I started to push a little.  Two guys in my group had caught me and I made the choice to keep with them.  We jockied back and forth all the way back to about mile 53 or so.  This is when I backed it down a little and grabbed a little extra water in my belly and let the legs settle down a bit before the run. 
I came off the bike alone with a big gap in front of me and a huge gap behind me, so I got to rev up the spectators all on my own (always fun to do).  Came flying into the dismount line and like I always do scared the crap out of the volunteers that were screaming for me to “slow down” and dismount.  There nothing like jumping off the bike at the last second while at speed. (time: 2:43:28/ 20.55mph, 11th age group, 38th OA)
 
T2:
This took longer than I wanted to, thanks to putting socks on.  But I have learned in the past that the run is a heck of a lot harder when your feet are bleeding.  Came out of T2 with two guys only 10ft in front of me, which means I closed that big gap that was ahead of me on the way in.  (nothing like a quick transition, eh Bruce?)  total time was 1:09, including the run to the complete other end of the huge transition.
 
Run 13.1miles:
As I was running out of the transition and onto the course I heard the announcer say “Here comes Rogue Racing team looking good”,  I did the airplane arm pumps for the crowd, shot an I love you to the wife and kids (for bonus points) emptied my pockets of empty gel wrappers, and said good bye to the moral support that is the crowd.
The first mile is an ever so gentle downhill grade that makes is REALLY easy to start out too fast (I was running with out a watch so I couldn’t tell you pace numbers).  I tried to make sure I was taking it easy.  The good thing was in that first mile I picked off about 5 people, 1 from my age group.  I started the routine at the first aid station that I continued for all of them.  Yelling ‘water,coke,water”.  They had it ready for me at almost all the stops.  Water in mouth, coke in mouth, water on head.  The first 3miles were/are ~easy with a slight downhill then some small rollers.  After mile 3.xx you turn the corner and go UP this dirt road for the next 1-2miles.  Thankfully there is shade!  I just set the pace at just below redline somewhere in the cruising pace, not having a clue what pace that was with no watch, and just kept clicking the miles off.  Before I knew it I was passing the first turn around on a short out and back at mile 6ish.  I was able to see my competitors, and saw the gap in front and behind me were about the same.  I figured if I thought I could catch the guy in front of me (which I did think) then the guy behind me likely was thinking the same, so I had to keep chugging along.  Miles kept clicking away, aid stations kept fuel on the fire, and the shade (that I had to seek out on the edges of the road) kept the thermostat from overheating.  I was catching some pro women and got to see a handful of the pro men that were cracked and walking.  The hills kept coming.  At about mile 9ish we ran back passed the park (evil really the finish line a mere 400yds away at that point!) and the crowd was great to spike the pace for a little while.  Just passed that turn, I had a guy come flying up to me and start to pass me.  I looked at his calf to see the age group, he was 33, “DAMN I need to run with you” I said to him.  We ran together for half mile or so before I let him go.  Literally the next thing I noticed, I looked up and saw the 11mile sign!  I made a surely audible, WTF?  I had too much in the tank, AND I could see someone (one of the two from the end of the bike) that was fading off in the distance.  Only two miles to close the gap, and I knew there was a brutal hill that lasts nearly the entire final 1.5miles.  The hammer fell out of my pocket at that point and I commenced closing the gap.  Picked off a couple other guys/gals in the mean time, but they were not in my age group.  I got to within maybe 100ft or so of the guy I was trying to catch, the whole time thinking to myself “I know there are at least 3 guys in my age group ahead of me, so he MIGHT the final podium spot”.  I was also struggling with the idea that Kelly and the kids wanted to run the finishers shoot with me and I didn’t want to catch this guy for a sprint finish and miss that family opportunity.  Thankfully with the distance I had to close on him and the remaining distance to the finish line, it wasn’t going to happen so I backed off, zipped up my shirt, pulled it down to look respectable, and waved the family through.  We ran down the finishers shoot together.  They slapped the medal around my neck AND put one on each of the kids (cool huh!).  The announcer kept commenting on the “Got Grog?” on the back of the kids shirts!  They pulled us aside for a family photo gave us all some Gatorade/water and a towel and a shirt.  (time 1:28:05/  6:43min/mile)
 
Total time:  4:43:58 27th oa and 10th age group  (pros aren’t included in OA)
 
After:
I sat in the shade after the finish and chugged two bottles of Gatorade while talking to Big Matty Reed.  Went and signed up for a massage and chatted with a few more pros while we waited.  Finished up with some Free burgers and a Corona…… then I went on the roller coaster and other rides with the kids.  I felt better than I have ever felt after a race!  I shaved 15minutes off my time from two years ago.  And to make things even better, the kids slept for nearly the ENTIRE ride home!
 
Mr. Nick Frankie, my wife spotted you in the middle of ALL those other racers!  Shame shame J
 
Oh yeah, I beat Bucknell Bobby by 15minutes……. He was the only one I was concerned with beating!
 
 
Tim