Titanium team showdown!

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Titanium man is an Olympic distance race that’s pretty close to Prosser and very reasonably priced. I’d heard good things about it and originally had planned to race it as a final test before Grand Columbian. Then I was going to race it for fun. Then I tried to sign-up and found out that the individual registration was closed, so I figured I’d spectate and cheer for the folks who were racing. Then Erin mentioned that she and Timmion were doing the race as a team and suggested T and I could do the same. It was the same 35 bucks for a team as for an individual, so I figured why not? I signed up to swim and run, with T doing the bike leg.

Saturday morning we got up early and headed over to the race start. Bandit supervised our packing up of the car from the front yard:

The race is a bit confusing logistically, due to the fact that the swim and bike are both point to points. So, you swim down the river and then get on the bike and end up at another spot to start the run. This is enough to deal with when there’s just one racer, but as a relay team it was even more confusing. Plus we arrived at the race site a little later than I usually do, so I’ll admit that I was a little frazzled as I struggled into my wetsuit and into the water.

I had no idea where to line up and accidentally found myself in the front and close to shore, so with less than a minute to go, I had to flail my way to the back and ended up entangled in some seaweed. Not a good start. The gun went off and I managed to extract myself from the mess and get swimming, but it was ugly. There more clear water toward the middle of the river (and ostensibly faster current) so I headed that way. It took a little while, but I finally found a rhythm. It was really weird to not have any buoys to sight and just swim in a straight line, but, once I got used to it, I started to really enjoy it.

I knew Timmion would swim faster than me and this was confirmed when I got out of the water five minutes behind her. I swapped the timing chip off of my ankle and put it onto T’s and sent him off on the bike. It was very odd to do the first leg of a triathlon and then stand around leisurely instead of yanking the wetsuit off as fast as possible and dashing onto the bike. Erin was just doing the run leg for their team, so she and I hung out during the bike leg. We cheered for the rest of the swim finishers and then headed over to the end of bike/beginning of run area.

While we were waiting, we took Lucky for a little dip in the river:

The river looks much calmer now:

After a while, we started to prepare for the biker’s return. Because Timmion had been saying that she’d ridden her bike about four times this summer and T is really strong on the bike, we fully expected T to be ahead of her coming into transition. Erin’s plan for transition was to wait for me to leave and then she’d get ready. So, we were both surprised when Timmion pulled in and asked me where Erin was. So there was some pandemonium as I waved/yelled for Erin and they did their exchange. About a minute later, T pulled in and I managed to snap a quick picture of him:

We did a quick hand-off and I hit the road. Erin had also been talking about how slow her run leg was going to be and how she was going to have to walk, etc. I’m not fast, but I know I can run the distance even after the 10 mile run I’d done on Thursday. But Erin was doing quite well, so I decided that their team name was now “Team Sandbagger.” 😉 Erin managed to do her tragically slow 10k about three minutes faster than me and Team Sandbagger beat Team Dragonfire quite handily.

It was fun to do a relay with T and I really enjoyed the race. I would definitely do it again. We refueled first at Starbucks and then at a delicious taco truck back in Prosser. Excellent rewards for racing. Followed up by a post-race nap before we moved on to the evenings festivities that I will cover in the next post. (This one is long enough!)


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