This past Saturday over two thousand well trained athletes invaded the bustling metropolis of Burley, Idaho for the 2010 Lion’s Club Spudman Triathlon. This small farming community is more than accommodating and greeted us with open arms and freshly tuned cowbells. Packet pick up the night before was met with some rain showers but didn’t seem to deter many of us from camping in the park on the bank of the Snake River. Many took advantage of the pre-race spaghetti dinner to catch up with friends and mix with their tribe. Since there were separate transition locations, security was provided for bikes left overnight, a nice bonus for the reduction of race morning stress.
There was scattered rain the night before but thanks to the early morning sun, the road was dry and ready for some fun. The 1.5k swim leads you down the Snake River for your best swim time ever. (that’s right, DOWN river) To me it was comparable to swimming with fins, or some sort of super power I would imagine. I’ll let you know if I ever get any. Bike transition was well organized with each rack end bearing a letter or number to assist in locating your bike even with a water logged thinker.
The 40k bike course was full of long stretches of flats along wheat and potato fields. I was especially impressed with the resident fans. There were quite a few sitting in lawn chairs doing ‘the wave’ as cyclists flew past. The terrain certainly favored those with close ratio cassettes and upgraded wheel sets on their shiny carbon TT bikes. However illegal drafting may be in our sport, be aware that it is rampant in this race. If age groupers intend on winning the right way, be prepared to put the pedal down a little bit harder. A special mention should be given to the emergency personnel who had their hands full of some bad luck near the bike to run transition area. A series of serious crashes with cyclists and spectators kept their hands full in addition to the few minor crashes on the course. The triathlon community is certainly thinking about the unfortunate athletes and family involved and we hope for your quick recovery!
The 10k run winds through more farmland and along a stretch of dirt canal bank. Aid stations were fully stocked with Heed, water and many enthusiastic smiles. Some obliging residents provided relief for the runners by placing sprinklers in the road. There were also two trucks spaced on the run offering large showers for those later waves who started their run with the afternoon heat. The athletes were friendly and encouraging adding to the good vibe of the race. The finish ended on a grassy down hill and the most beautiful assortment of fruit I’ve ever seen. Each athlete is met with a finisher medal and a welcome, icy bottle of water.
I see myself at this race again next year and for many years to come. I highly recommend camping on the river for the full triathlon community experience. Bring your friends, bring your family but get to this race if you can!
Elite Woman Results
1 Katie LOTT LOGAN UT 02:08:48.4
2 Erika WILDE SPRINGVILLE UT 02:09:50.1
3 Kristin BARRUS KAYSVILLE UT 02:16:43.5
4 Kara SWENSEN PROVIDENCE UT 02:22:45.3
5 Gina DARRINGTON DECLO ID 02:32:28.5
Elite Men Results
1 Bj CHRISTENSON NORTH SALT LAKE UT 01:47:10.4
2 Heath THURSTON Provo UT 01:48:40.3
3 Karl WILD ALPINE UT 01:54:11.0
4 Edward CHRISTENSON PROVO UT 01:55:14.7
5 Robert STEWART SALT LAKE CITY UT 02:04:51.2