It seems like the off season gets shorter every year, but the new racing season brings about exciting times. I opened up my season in Florida for the Clermont and Sarasota Continental cups the first two weekends in March.
Neither event was much to write home about. I had a solid race in Clermont but with the deep field, I did not perform up to expectations. I rode well and felt strong going on a break from the 2nd chase pack with Jason Pedersen, but we did not quite catch the primary chase.
I closed the race with a 16:50 for the 5.3 km course, only finishing 27th just ahead of 2012 Olympian Manny Huerta.
The next week in Sarasota, I wanted to really push the swim and just hang on. I thought I was doing that and exited in good but not great position. There was a large main chase pack forming and myself, Justin Roeder, Brandon Nied, Graham Leitch, Taylor Reid and a few others chased hard and just latched on. I had just pulled through when we made connection and as we went through transition, a Canadian in front of me fell and I got stuck behind that. I never went down, but lose valuable time after just putting out 6.3K of extremely hard work to catch the bunch. I ended up TT'ing with Graham the rest of the race and it was over from there. 34th place is not what I look for, but I have no choice to keep my head down and keep working.
I am excited to get going with the rest of the season. Next big ITU race is in Barbados where I had a great race last year. Happy training!