Senior Matt Coleman qualified for the World Championships in Edmonton in 2020 and will be competing in the triathlon - Olympic distance. He persevered through a flat tire to place 30th in the Olympic distance. The following day he completed the sprint course and set a personal record!
Here are his words:
The racing was definitely an experience...
Saturday: The swim was shortened to 750 meters due to very rough water and the risk of rip currents. The swimming leg went okay, nothing extraordinary.
The biking leg was 25 miles. I was flying. I moved up through the field relatively quickly, and by mile 15, I was sitting in the second position. I reached the 20-mile mark in 49 minutes. I was averaging 24.5 mph. Then, at about mile 20.5, my rear wheel exploded. I heard a loud boom, and I looked down, and I could see that the rear wheel was pancake flat. I had to make a hard decision: run my bike the 5ish miles back to transition or ride in on the flat and risk severely damaging the wheel. I opted to ride in on the flat, very carefully. I almost crashed around a few corners because I had no grip on the back wheel. It took 20 minutes to ride the last 5 miles of the biking leg. When I got the flat, I was leading my age group, and I was safe in a spot that would have qualified me for Worlds. About 25 people passed me while I was struggling with the flat. I was very frustrated.
The run was 6.2 miles, and I ran an average of 7:30 for a time of 46:36. I cramped a bit, and my legs were fatigued.
In the end, I placed 30th in the Olympic Distance with a time of 2:14:38.
Sunday: I woke up with a nagging pain in my groin from the race the previous day. I took my time through setting up my transition. Then I realized that I had 35 minutes to the start of my race, and I still had to warm up. I did a quick jog, some stretching, and some pick-ups. I threw on my wetsuit and hightailed it to the start line. Honestly, I was expecting to be very fatigued and not have much energy for Sunday's race. Oh boy was I wrong!
The swim was the full 750 meters. The water was very calm. I kept the pace up and finished the swim in 12:23.
The biking leg was 12.4 miles, and I was a little cautious to not flat again. I finished the biking leg in 32:18 at an average pace of 23.71 mph.
The run was 3.1 miles, and I booked it. My first mile was 6:40. My second mile was 5:45. My third mile was 6:30. I finished the run in 20:35 at an average pace of 6:18 min/mile.
In the end, I placed 21st with a time of 1:09:13. This is the fastest I have ever competed in a sprint distance triathlon.
In June, I clocked a time of 1:16:49. In August, I went 7 minutes and 36 seconds faster. I was very happy with my performance on Sunday.