PlayTri Festival Race Recap

The 2014 Festival in Las Collinas Texas was incredible. The people at  always put on an excellent race, but this year the Saturday with Juniors and Pros (Olympians) racing made for a great weekend. Follow that with watching some of the most inspirational Paratriathletes out there on Sunday afternoon.
I found myself exceptionally nervous race morning. There were a few monkeys on my back. It started while I was getting dressed in the hotel bathroom around 4:45 AM when my wife came in and proceeded to start vomiting in the toilette. I was already having trouble making myself eat and now, well food really wasn’t on the menu. After getting the all clear from her, I finished up and headed down to transition and got all setup, knocked out my pre-race routine and lined up for the swim start.

My race day demons:

  • Is My wife OK?
  • Is my foot healed? I had done very limited in an attempt to allow the stress fracture in my foot to totally heal.
  • Will my thumb be OK? My fractured thumb still hurt from a bike crash, making it hard to fully grip the bike brakes and shift.
  • Will I get beat up in the swim? I have a history with this race in getting hit, kicked, pulled and nearly drowned.

As I exited the water there was my wife and daughter cheering me on. Another big sigh as I check a second demon off my list. Wife is ok enough to come out to the race. I made a quick transition and was off to the 3 loop bike course. I immediately noticed the sound of my rear brake pad rubbing. This stayed with me the entire ride. Within the second mile I hit some bad concrete and my nutrition bottle went flying. I had planned on one bottle of calories and electrolytes (hot day) another bottle only half full of water and one gel. With only a half bottle of water, one gel and not much pre-race food, I knew that at some point I would start to feel the under nutrition. I rationed what little fuel I had and soldered on. The course is fast with only one hump (not really a hill) and navigation is easy with the volunteers out at all the corners cheering you on, and the local Police directing traffic through intersections. As I rolled into transition I knew I didn’t have the bike I wanted, but was satisfied that I got all I could out of my legs given the circumstances. Bonus, I didn’t even think about my thumb! Number three demon check off.

As I exited the water there was my wife and daughter cheering me on. Another big sigh as I check demon two off my list. Wife is ok enough to come out to the race. I made a quick transition and was off to the 3 loop bike course. I immediately noticed the sound of my rear brake pad rubbing. This stayed with me the entire ride. Within the second mile I hit some bad concrete and my nutrition bottle went flying. I had planned on one bottle of calories and electrolytes (hot day) another bottle only half full of water and one gel. With only a half bottle of water, one gel and not much pre-race food I knew that some point I would start to feel the under nutrition. I rationed what little fuel I had and soldered on. The course is fast with only one hump (not really a hill) and navigation is easy with the volunteers out at all the corners cheering you on and the local Police directing traffic through intersections. As I rolled into transition I knew I didn’t have the bike I wanted but was satisfied that I got all I could out of my legs given the circumstances. Bonus, I didn’t even think about my thumb! Number three demon check off.

Upon spotting my support crew, I quickly transitioned to run gear. Well, not as quickly as I would like; It is hard to pull a shoe on fast with a fractured thumb. As with the bike, the run is mostly flat and fast with a 4 loop circuit that leaves you exposed to the sun the entire run. Thankfully the two aid stations on every loop were well staffed and very handy with the fluids. The plan: under nutrition, questionable foot and run fitness meant “Go Slow” and every Aid Station – “one down the throat, one on the back of neck.” I was able to maintain good form and steady pace, saying hi to the family every I looped around. The foot felt great! Another demon down. The finish line was great with lots of spectators cheering you to the finish. After an ice bath and a quick jump in the pool with my daughter, I went to clear out my gear and pack up. As I approached my bike I noticed I had a flat front tire. Upon inspection I found that the front tube had blown, leaving a 6 inch split. Still can’t get my head around when that happened.

This is a race I highly recommend. There is an added bonus if you can stay on site and watch the Saturday races. Start making your plans for next year.

David Brumley

About The Author

David Brumley

David Brumley is an immunodeficient triathlete diagnosed with CVID, Common Variable Immune Deficiency, in 2008. Through the sport of triathlon he will inspire, equip and encourage you to find your better in life. Professionally he works independently in the field of marketing and design. David is married and has one beautiful daughter along with a dog, cat and two guinea pigs.

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