The Seattle (Mercer Island) Escape the Rock Triathlon was the last triathlon of my 2013 season. It started out on Mercer Island with a 1/2 mile swim that composed a triangle. After that it was a 12 mile total out and back on the closed I-90 express lanes. We finished up with a ~2.5 mile run which was an out and back with a large hill.
This event was not a USAT sanctioned triathlon and it was strange because I could tell the difference pretty easily during the bike portion… which I’ll get more into later.
The swim was a blast. It was a triangle course that covered about a half of a mile. They split the start up into waves which made it a bit less chaotic. I started with the fourth wave but caught the third one before I finished the swim. My clock time for the swim was 14:58 which isn’t too bad for half of a mile. My Garmin tracked the swim at 0.42 miles but it’s not the most accurate in water.
Transition one was ridiculous. A 250 meter barefoot run from the water to the bike area. It definitely got my legs ready for the bike but the run was uphill and seemed to last forever.
The bike course was a simple out and back along a closed express lane. There were a few hills and my Garmin tracked a bit of elevation gain. The problem with the Garmin on this course was that we traveled through a few tunnels and it completely lost signal. That’s why when you look at the map it doesn’t equal twelve miles and it looks like I drove through houses.
I had no real issue with the course but I did have issues with some of the riders on the course. There were a ton of first timers here which was AWESOME but it seems like they didn’t read anything into triathlon/cycling etiquette… which is a very real thing. I’m going to try and organize my thoughts so that it doesn’t look like gibberish but the two areas I want to focus on are bike position, drafting, and passing.
Bike Position: If you’re biking along and not currently passing anyone then stay as far to the right as possible. I can not count on one hand the number of times I had to pass people on the right because they were as far to the left as they could be on the course. I let each of them know to stay right but seriously… seems like common bike knowledge to me.
Drafting: This is not a USAT sanctioned event… I get that. However that doesn’t mean you should create a five bike pace line and cut off children. That’s just dangerous.
Passing: If someone is overtaking you on the bike then it is the person being passed’s job to slow down and give the passer ample room. It is not the time to kick it into high gear when you’re being passed as it creates a potentially dangerous situation (two bikers riding side-by-side.)
Transition two was great as always. Off the bike and onto the run!
The run was awesome! Up and down a hill and turn around and re-trace your steps. I love running hills and I really do feel that hills are my strong point. That’s generally where I pass the most people and it was no different here. Part of me wishes the run was longer as it wasn’t until after the first mile that I started to feel good and get into a groove.
According to the computers my official time and place was as follows.
Age Group: 5/15
Swim: 14:58 (94/315)
Bike: 41:24 (165/315)
Run: 16:46 (28/315)
Total Time: 1:19:05