Saturday, September 26, 2009

Augusta 70.3 Spectathlete Report Part 1

I rolled into Augusta late Friday night and Danni met me at the airport.  We instantly witnessed a bat signal from our coach in the form of a license plate that read “ELF-193.”  Unfortunately it was difficult to photograph in the dark, from a distance, in a moving vehicle.

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This morning, Danni and I walked to transition to go for a swim and check things out.  Augusta is certainly an interesting mix of old and new.  Beautiful old homes that sadly are not well maintained anymore, a surprisingly number of empty downtown storefronts (that left us panicked and starving when we could not find breakfast), and an influx of Ironman athletes whizzing around on tri bikes.

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I spotted this establishment next door to the hotel.  Class. Ee.

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I must admit, I was envious of this swim venue.  Comfortable water and a STRONG downstream current.  There are going to be some fast swim times tomorrow.

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That’s South Carolina on the other side of the river!

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Trying our best to pose

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Danni in the world’s slowest USAT check-in line

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I am sympathetic to the bobbles that happen along the way with a new race.  That said, I’ve never done a 70.3 event with such chaotic and inefficient check-in procedures.  The result was that we – and probably others – spent less $$ than we would have otherwise at the expo because it was so overwhelmingly crowded, and we’d spent so much time on our feet waiting in lines, that we just wanted to get out.

A drive of the bike course was up next and again I’ll say, if not for logistical issues involved in getting my bike here and my focus on my A race in 8 weeks, this would be a great ride to do.  Beautiful scenery, gentle gradual hills, and mostly well-paved roads.

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Who in their right mind goes out and rides the entire bike course the day before? We saw a LOT of these folks.

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After lunch and a well-deserved rest, it was time to check Danni’s bike into transition!

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Eleanor is ready to race tomorrow!

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Finally (long day!), we met Wes and DeeDee and Kevin and Cathy for dinner.  Around 2 hours later, we finally got our food.  Again, Ironman appears to be a bit much for Augusta to handle.

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With athletes fed, it’s time to bed.  I will see everyone off on the swim tomorrow, do my assigned run, and then cheer them all to the finish!

5 comments:

Trishie said...

love that -- "a touch" of class... just a touch. I missed something --- are you racing this at all? doing a relay ??

Missy said...

Oh, how fun. Don't get too caught up at Touch of Class;) Best of luck today to everyone..and you got to meet Wes and Deedee, yay.

Roo said...

Very classy. The bike course looks pretty though!

Maria said...

what a friend to stand in all those lines without racing! dedication at it's best.

Wes said...

Shoe show!! LOL... It was great seeing you guys too, and the best part was the convo while waiting for dinner...