A dream come true – Chrissie Wellington

Today, DuVine and Cannondale organized a sprint triathlon event at Captain Cook Point south of Kona. The event was a ~750 meter swim, ~17 mile bike ride and then a 5k run. We were only 5 of us taking part with Chrissie Wellington handing out the awards. Of course, I was super excited to see Chrissie again but was playing it down. I knew my main competition would be Scott and I desperately wanted to beat him. Scott is a faster swimmer and biker, but I can reel him on the run. Charlie was my other concern. He is a much stronger biker, but I was quite certain I could handle him on the run.

Chrissie giving us a few tips before the race start

The race started with Chrissie signing her book and my favorite workout cap. She has that slightly edgy british sense of humor; watch out how you phrase your question. Scott, with his crazy sense of humor asked, “Hey Chrissie, have you ever thought of sabotaging your competitors?” Her reply (with steely eyes and of course her British accent) was, “No, I prefer to annihilate my competition on the course; and I want them at their best.” There was power in her words!

We setup our bike transitions and were ready to rock. Chrissie was the first one to jump into the ocean. We all followed and off we went. Jen had kayaked a good distance in the ocean and we were to circle around her. Chrissie disappeared instantly. I started slowly drafting off Nancy and eventually passed her to draft Scott. Charlie and Julie were behind us. At the turn, Scott was leading and I was right behind. I noticed that Scott was veering off course so I decided to go on my own. I was first out of the water. T1 was slow for me (as usual). Scott took off on the bike and I followed. I knew that I could end the bike a minute or even two behind him and catch him on the run. I kept pace at around 30 seconds back. The course was two loops of about 7 miles each. At the second turn-around, I fell significantly back only to find out that Scott had turned around early. He would be penalized. By the end of the bike, I was more than a minute back and Charlie had caught up with me. The race was on.

I started the run with a slow high-cadence jog. The run course was straight uphill for the first half looping back to the finish. If I caught Scott while going uphill, the race was mine. About halfway up, I saw him walking. I had him. Charlie was behind me and walking. I passed Scott with about half-a-mile of uphill left. Now I was cruising, and on the way down I felt pretty good.

At the finish, Chrissie was waiting with a Hawaiian Lei. She put it around me, and I was loving life. Justin was taking pics and prompted her to plant a kiss on my cheek. She did and held it until she heard the camera click. I was in heaven.

Thanks Chrissie! That’s a Dream Come True

I love Chrissie’s spirit. She is friendly, fun and has an outlook on life that is positive and energetic.

Swim >> Bike >> Run (race course and speed details). Final results:

  • Men: me, Scott, Charlie
  • Women: Julie, Nan

We hung around for a while as there were spinner dolphins frolicking in the bay. It was a PERFECT day. Pictured below (from left to right) are me, Nan, Charlie, Julie, Scott, Jen and Justin.

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