Ironman Kansas 70.3 Race Report

A recap of what was by far my worst triathlon yet – a comedy of errors if you will…

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What a weekend! In short, if something had the opportunity to go awry, it did.

We had decided to hit the road from Houston late in the afternoon on thursday, so I loaded up our 2002 Honda Civic, picked up Courtney and started heading out. Of course, my impecable sense of premonition allowed me to pick the route out of downtown Houston that had by far the most accidents, so we had to endure well over an hour of stop-and-go traffic. It would have been more, but right about at the exit for the airport, the Honda decided that was as far as this trip was going, overheated and blew smoke in our faces. A quick check revealed oil in the coolant – great, blown headgasket (second time in three months!). I pulled out my roadside assistance card, called Allstate – I bet they recognize my voice by now – who promptly sent a towtruck to meet us. At the wrong location. Figures. An hour and a half and three different police officers went by until the tow truck finally arrived. Since the driver did not feel like cancelling the previous ticket and entering the new location, we had to pay an extra $40 out of pocket for him to tow us about 4 miles to the next big parking lot. Now left to our own devices in a non-functioning car that doesn’t lock in front of a more-than-usually run down Family Dollar with darkness quickly descending, we decide I should get a cab to the airport and rent a car so we could continue the trip. So one cab ride with a rather rude Cajun who was blasting Lil’John uncomfortably loudly, frantic negotiations with multiple car rental companies, and getting lost on the way back to Family Dollar finally got us leaving Houston at 10 pm. Given that it’s a 9 hour drive from Houston to Fayetteville, you can imagine that this is not the ideal way to start race weekend!

We pulled in at Courtney’s parents at 7:30 am friday morning. I got a quick 90 minute nap, we ran a few errands, had lunch with friends, loaded up the camper and jumped in the truck for the ride to Lawrence, which I promptly slept through. So glad I didn’t have to drive that part! When we got to the campground, the Northwest Arkansas Triathlete Team had already made camp and Frank, Jason, Mike and Mark were working dilligently on their bikes. We unloaded our three bikes and I joined the mechanics convention, where my two left thumbs felt sorely out of place. I took off my front tire, ready to install my brand new race tires – only to find out they are not typically sold in pairs! Slightly embarrassing, but c’est la vie, as I was informed that a brand new tire would likely be slower than a broken-in one. Ultimately, my Javelin, Courtney’s Cervelo and Anna’s Specialized got a quick clean, lube and gear/brake tuneup, Anna and Joey grilled up some steaks and we hit the sack. 

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