Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Edmonton World Cup Race Report

Well, that didn't go quite as planned.
Great swim, struggled a bit on the bike, no legs on the run.

I was the 2nd last guy out to the start line, so I got the 2nd last choice for starting spot. I ended up being about the 6th or 7th guy in from the right side, which was a bit longer than the left side (as the course curved to the left a bit at the start). I had a pretty clean start, swimming right beside Andrew McCartney for about 100m. We had some clean water, and I moved around him and started bridging over to the group coming on the left. Brukhankov was leading, Jenkins was on his feet, and I tucked in on Jenkins feet around the first turn buoy. I passed Brukhankov at roughly 600m or so, leading into shore to end lap 1 (and take the swim prime). I lead the whole 2nd loop, leading a long string of athletes out of the water and up to the transition zone.

The bike was tougher on me than I thought it would be. I managed to stay in contact with the front group of roughly 18 the first time up the hill, though I didn't have much pop in the legs for the climb. We had 35" or so on the chase group after the first loop, but that would be the last I'd see of the front of the race, as halfway up the hill on loop 2 I got popped out the back of the group. I had positioned myself approx. midway in the group for the climb, but quickly went backwards as there was a slight attack at the front, and I just couldn't match the acceleration. Once I rounded the corner at the top, I was 60m back of the group at least, and had no way of bridging back into the group. Zvonko Cubric and I ended up riding the rest of the 2nd loop together, though in hindsight, I should have just let up and waited for the chase pack, as Joel feels I left myself out there on my own a bit too long after getting dropped.

Once in the chase group (including two Canadians Kyle Jones and Brent McMahon) we lost a bit more time to the leaders, coming off the bike 2:30 down. Once in the chase group, I was able to hang in more easily on the climbs, which was a bit frustrating that I couldn't hang in earlier on.

Off the bike and into the flats, I just couldn't get the running legs going. My legs felt flat. I was unable to move up at all, having a bunch of guys from the third pack run through me. I ended up crossing the line in 43rd place, not quite the race that I was hoping for.

I've learned a couple things from the race: I need to work on increasing my peak power output for those surges on the hills, corners, etc... and I also need to limit the number of those efforts on the bike (position in the pack is a crucial component). Time to regroup for the Geneva Continental Cup on July 14th.

Edmonton World Cup Results:

6 min Video Clip of Race (click on the men's race):

The start of the men's race, I'm the 2nd face you can see on the left (black leg)

Hurting on the Emily Murphy Climb (#64)

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Pre Race Report - Edmonton World Cup

I feel this day has been a long time coming. Since making my first Canadian U20 team in 1997, I never figured that it would be 10 years until I was able to get my first World Cup start. I'm very grateful for the starting spot here in Edmonton, now I just have to go out and race to my abilities.

We left Victoria Friday morning, arriving in Edmonton around 1pm. Kyle and I are staying at the Coast Edmonton Plaza, just a short walk from the race hotel. Kirsten and I got our run workout finished with, then we all headed to the pre-race meeting and the dinner that followed.

Swim and Run Map
Bike Map

The swim takes place in Hawrelak Park. The water temperature is on the borderline of either being a wetsuit swim or not. If it is 20.0 C or warmer, then no wetsuits (good thing!). Any cooler, and it means everyone in wetsuits (bad thing for me!)

I am the penultimate ranked athlete, which means I will most likely be on the far right side of the field, as the swim curves to the left at the beginning, and thus the left side will be slightly shorter. Luckily for me, Andrew McCartney will be starting right beside me, so hopefully we will have a nice train flying up the right hand side at the start of the swim!

The bike course is pretty interesting, and is pretty much as I remember it from Nationals here in 1999. Out of the park, and we are greeted by Emily Murphy Hill, a short climb, before traveling along Saskatchewan Dr, then flying down Groat Rd. After crossing the bridge, we take the off ramp, come under the highway, take the on-ramp back on, and head back towards transition zone. 6 loops in total makes up the bike.

The run looks to be fairly flat, with a short incline to the turn-around point out of the park. Three loops in total for the run.

Today we did some pre-race training on the course, but otherwise kept off the feet in the hotel room. A group dinner at Boston Pizza, and we caught a funny movie afterwards - Knocked up.

Well, that's the race in a nutshell, time for bed. Hopefully I can get a decent sleep tonite, that usually doesn't happen the night before a race! I have no real expectations placed on myself here, I just want to have a solid race, and most importantly have a solid run split.

I'll have a race report early in the week, once we get back to Victoria.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Catching Up

Well, I figured it was about time that I updated the blog.

Sunday, we wanted to get our workouts done in the morning, so we could hustle back and start watching the World Cup races that started at 11:30am our time.

We started out with a great hill workout, warm-up, then 6 times up the Observatory climb (2.2km) and a warm-down ride back to our place, followed by 5' hard run right off the bike and then 25' easy to finish up.

#1: 8:27 (303 W) stopped when AP threw his chain
#2: 7:16 (317 W)
#3: 7:12 (316 W)
#4: 7:12 (317 W)
#5: 6:43 (347 W)
#6: 6:29 (365 W)

The Des Moines race was such a tough race, very windy, very hot, and very humid. Only about half the field in each race finished. AP, Jordan, Andrew and I finished off the day with 3000m over at Commonwealth after the races.

Monday we swam 5000 in the morning, mainly all aerobic with the main set being 15 X 300 (5 pull w. paddles, 5 PB only, 5 swim) and finished off the day with a 60' easy spin.

Today (Tues) I swam 4400 in the pool:

400/200 warm-up
10 X 50 as 25 fast/25 ez
100 ez
3 X (4 X 100 mid race pace on 1:40, 200 ez) (Held 1:08's)
3 X 400 Pull (1-3) on 5:20 (5:13, 4:53, 4:43)
100 ez

A 50' run with some strides thrown in, a massage with Gibson, and a dip in the ocean.

I also found out today that I got a spot into the Edmonton World Cup this weekend. I'm pumped to race this weekend, I fly out Friday morning, and race Sunday at 3:45 MST (5:45 pm EST). There will be live audio and timing on the ITU website -

Sunday, June 17, 2007

What Could be Better?

Online coverage of Des Moines, and the US Open side by side

Friday, June 15, 2007

Still sore

Well... it's Friday now, and the legs are still feeling the effort from the weekend. Guess the run took a bit more out of me than I had figured.

Thursday was a bit of an easy regeneration day again, 3000m in the morning in the pool, with a few mid-race pace 100's with Simon who's getting ready for Des Moines (more on that race later)

I headed over to Commonwealth for a 50' run on the treadmill, with 5 x 15" accelerations. A quick jaunt in the steam room, then back home and down to the ocean to ice the legs.

Today's workouts ended up feeling a lot harder than the watch showed.
4500 in the pool, with 2 main sets:

4 x 50 (1-3, #4 ez) on 60"
4 x 100 on 1:40 mid race pace
200 ez
(repeat 2 times)

Then we went into 40 x 50 on 50" as (4 mid race pace, 1 ez)

Later we headed down to Beacon Hill for a run workout. 20' warm-up, followed by 3 X 1 loop of the figure 8 course (w. 4' rest). The effort was there, the legs just weren't.

9:40, 9:15, and 9:40 for the three intervals. A 10' cool-down jog, then back home an easy 60' spin, and another dip in the ocean. Hopefully the legs get out of this funk.

If any of you happen to be in front of your computer's come Sunday afternoon, the Des Moines World Cup is being broadcast live on the internet (

There is a HUGE prize purse for this race, with the winner taking home $200,000 plus a new Hummer H3.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Back to it

After a late arrival back to Victoria Sunday night (9 pm ferry, back home 11:30), it was a bit of a sleep in on Monday morning. We met as a group at commonwealth to swim 3000m easy. A bunch of unpacking, and an easy 60' ride to flush the legs out finished off the day.

Tuesday's training was another recovery day. 3200 m in the morning at the pool as follows.

1000 SKIDS warm-up (swim, kick, IM, drill, swim)
3 X 300 Pull (1-3) w. 30" rest
200 easy
3 X 300 swim (1-3) w. 30" rest
200 easy

AP and I headed out for a 90' easy ride along the waterfront, and met up with Kyle and Terrenzo Bozzone (training in Victoria between Vancouver and Des Moines WC's). I was able to get a 30' massage with Gibson on short notice which was great! The massage is a great aide in the recovery process.

Which brings us around to today's training. Half the group (Colin, Kyle, Simon, Kirsten) head off tomorrow to Des Moines for the richest World Cup race ever this weekend. We swam open water at Thetis, with a big island loop for warm-up, some accelerations, then a small loop moderate. Those of us who aren't racing this weekend continued on with another small loop moderate (though the pace was ratcheted up quite a bit on the second go round)

Andrew, AP and I headed up to the Waddling Dog for some moto pacing with Steve. I can say that my legs still haven't fully recovered, as they felt completely trashed on the workout today.

48' continuous
280 W avg power

A short 20' run off the bike was all that my legs could handle afterwards, followed by a soak in the ocean. Hopefully the legs rebound for tomorrow.

Some photo's from Vancouver on the weekend...Simon came through in the clutch with the win in the last kilometer, and Canada placed 3 men in the Top 7, including World Cup best finishes for Paul Tichelaar (5th) and Colin Jenkins (7th).

3 Canadians in the front group of 7 (Simon, Colin, Paul) that would have over a 2' lead off the bike

AP rocking it on the run (17th fastest run) to finish a WC best 35th

Jenkins running to his 7th place finish

Simon makes the decisive move to break Andy Potts in the last kilometer.

Colin is all smiles with his moolah for 7th place.

Monday, June 11, 2007

The week that was..

I've been a bit negligent this past week, but I'm back at it now.
This past week was a taper week leading into the Vancouver World Cup. I raced the age group race, as I didn't get into the World Cup. A week of resting up, some light key workouts, and then the ferry over to Vancouver for the race.

The bike had to be in transition on Saturday night, and it was just pouring all day in Vancouver. I had to cover the bike up when I left it there.

My race went off at 7:50 in the morning, and transition closed at 6:45. I came back to the hotel and hung out for a half hour then headed down for my start. I didn't do a swim warm-up as the water in English Bay was roughly 15 C and I didn't want to get chilled before the start.

I had a solid swim, coming out in 17:33. I had a tight fitting shirt underneath my race suit for the cold, and I threw some gloves on for the bike as well. I'm glad I did, as it started to rain a bit on the bike, but I was a tad warm for the bike. Now for the run. It was LONG. from what I've heard afterwards, our run ended up being roughly 14.5km. I ran 50:50 which is pretty good I guess, running without much competition.

Results for our race are on Sportstats.

The men's and women's World Cup races finished off the day, with solid results from Canada.

Sunday, June 03, 2007

The Weekend of Training

Not a lot of volume this weekend, but a key run workout on Saturday.

We met at Thetis Lake, then did the 5km loop for warm-up, before attacking a loop at tempo pace.
Simon took down the old group record by over 20" clocking 15:25 or so. I was happy with the effort, 17:15 which was 40" faster than when we ran the workout before. We then jogged down to the Galloping Goose trail for the rest of the workout...10 X 400 with 60" rest in between. Wow, did those 400's ever hurt.

Colin and I met up later at Commonwealth for an easy 2000m swim to loosen up. I went to head down to the ocean for an ice, but the tide was at its lowest level I'd seen, and the weeds prevented me from getting an ice in.


Easy group ride this morning from Starbucks. We've got a couple of Aussies training with us leading into the Vancouver World Cup next weekend (Emma Moffatt, and Matt Hopper). The waterfront loop, really busy today, lots of people out enjoying the great weather we've had this weekend.
4500m in the pool to finish the day off, some race pace efforts was the main set....didn't feel the greatest in the workout, but got through it.

New Hot Dog Champ... 59.5 Hot Dogs in 12 mins

I thought that Kobayashi was the man....but this guy crushed him!

Friday, June 01, 2007

First Day of Hurricane Season....Tropical Storm Barry

In North America, they're called hurricanes: mammoth tropical cyclones that can stretch 300 to 1000km across and 15km high and that that each year kill up to 15,000 people globally and cause billions of dollars in damage. Their average lifespan is 9 days, but can vary from 2 to 3 hrs to 2 to 3 weeks. Recently the North Atlantic experienced its most active decade, averaging yearly: 15 tropical storms and 8 hurricanes (4 major).

Tropical Storms often begin as thunderstorms that pull in warm, moist air off the ocean surface, remove its energy, and then push the spent air through their tops. As long as sea water is above 27 C for a considerable depth and winds co-operate, the disturbances continue to grow. Within a few days, a cluster of storms and thunderstorms unite into an enormous weather machine. A hurricane is a spiralling mass of cloud converging into an area about 30km across, a world of calm, sinking air, sunshine, and dryness, known as the "eye". The eye is surrounded by the "eyewall", a ring of thunderstorms containing the most violent winds and drenching rains. The huge waves and storm surge - the monstrous wall of water that crashes ashore - produced by hurricanes are often their most destructive elements.


"Tropical Storm Barry emerged on Friday afternoon, appropriately enough on the first day of hurricane season. A hurricane hunter aircraft found the system had winds greater than 39 mph, although its structure remains disorganized, the National Hurricane Center in Miami-Dade County said."

More on Barry can be found here.
The order of names for named storms this year is as follows: