Salem Spring 2011
The Salem Spring tri has long been a classic Sprint where 1st timers and veterans alike come out to get their feet wet for the first time or see where their fitness is for one of the first races of the season.
I arrived about 7:30 to get myself ready and go through my normal ritual. Racetri does an amazing job at making a party like atmosphere for the non athletes & athletes alike.
The water temperature was in the mid 60’s which is exactly where I like it. I have a confession to make. One of my biggest fears in life is drowning. I am terrified of it, yet at the same time I love the open water swim-I love the pushing and pulling and dunking of dozens or thousands of people in the water all at once. There is always at least one time when I’m in the open water that I think that ‘this could be it’ and it is at that time that I have to remind myself of a phrase I read several years ago which is, “slow is smooth, smooth is fast”. I felt strong in the water and I slowly started to creep up on the wave in front of me and came out of the water in a little slower than I had wanted.
The wetsuit strippers were a very nice touch that Racetri provided and they helped me with a :35 T1 time and I came quickly out of transition. The bike course is a little hilly and a little not. OK, actually it’s 3 miles up a winding hill and 3 miles down. The hills aren’t really that bad, as they climb for a little bit, then relax then climb again. I’m not that fast of a cyclist, but was able to pull out a modest 20+ mph on the 2 loops.
I put my bike by the run out exit and was able to pull off a :35 T2 and was off for the run. One change that Racetri did this year is they changed up the run course just a little bit so as to not criss-cross with bike course as it has done in years. The run course starts off flat but it doesn’t take very long to see the hill that you must climb that is just shy of 1 mile. Once you get to the top of the hill there is an aid station waiting for you which marks the 1.5 mile mark and it mostly downhill from there. The last section of the run takes you around part of the pond and at this time you can start to hear the crowd and finish line. At this point in the course there is a small hill that will demoralize you just enough to make you want to whimper just a little bit, but never fear because in about a quarter mile you will be greeted by friends, family and the Racetri staff.
The finish line camaraderie is amazing and the volunteers are ready to greet you with a medal and plenty of food. The awards given were given to the top 3 overall along with the top 3 in each age group. Racetri made these really cool trophy made with a spring that stood for “Spring Sprint”.
Racetri does a fantastic job with this race and this is definitely a race that you need to do if you are novice, intermediate or veteran. I can guarantee that there will be competition for everyone and that Racetri will put on a fantastic race. I dare you to prove me wrong.