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Monday, August 22, 2011

Jordanelle Course Review

I was asked by a reader to go in to a little more depth about the course on my Jordanelle Olympic Distance Triathlon, so here goes. :)

The swim wonderful! They had the Olympic distance men start at 9:00 a.m. and the Olympic women & Olympic relay start at 9:05 and lastly the sprint at 9:30 a.m. They had all the boueys set up and everything. For the Olympic distance, you had to do 2 laps around all 3 boueys, for the Sprint distance you only had to do 1 lap. They had plenty of boats and canoes out on the water in case somebody needed help, etc. The only downer about the swim was after you rounded the first bouey, as you were sighting heading towards the second bouey, the sun was SO bright and right in your eyes, I had a hard time sighting the second bouey. However, thankfully, there was a HUGE boat sitting out by the second bouey that I was able to sight with instead.

The bike was harder than I expected. I drove the route the day before, so I knew what I was getting in to. Normally, the route wouldn't be that hard for me. We had to bike a total of 25 miles. The first 12 miles of the bike were on what they call a "false flat". It looked flat, but it wasn't. It was between a 1 - 2% uphill grade. It was an open course, however, there wasn't alot of traffic. One of the downers of the bike course was the turn around wasn't well marked. Thankfully someone who had already reached the turn around point hollered out to me that I was coming close to the turn around point. All the turn around point was, was spray paint on the road saying 13 miles, turn around. I personally would have liked it if they had a barricade with a sign or a volunteer there saying ok, turn around here. Once you reached the turn around point, it was all downhill except for 2 hills you had to climb. The first hill I would say was maybe 4 - 5% incline and the second hill was maybe a 3% incline. Those second hill wasn't hard to climb at all and the first hill was easier to climb than I thought it would be. Especially with how fatigued I was already feeling. We only had to go through 2 major intersections on the bike and police officers and volunteers were present at both intersections to give us a right of way. That was very nice. The only other hill on the course was a 10% decend and that was towards the end of the course. Going down this hill you can practically almost coast the rest of the way in to transition. If you can't coast, you can pedal easy. :) I wish my speedometer was working when I went down this hill so I knew how fast I was going. They said alot of people go upwards of 40 mph down that hill. I know my personal trainer, who was also competing in the race, was going 55 mph down that hill.

The run was ALOT harder than I expected. I don't think the run would have been hard if I would have eaten on the bike (see my previous post about the Jordanelle Triathlon). I didn't know what the run route was until I started it. The majority of the run was a trail run. If you did the sprint distance triathlon, you only had to do 1 lap on the run, if you did the Olympic distance, you had to do 2 laps. About the first 1 1/2 miles of the run, it was on pavement and then you were on a trail until about the last 1/2 mile of the run. They did have water aid stations at every mile on the run, so that was really nice. We were basically running through campsites at Jordanelle. I don't really know how else to describe it. There was only 2 hills on the run and one was on pavement and one was on a trail. I've never been good at trail running, so the second hill was harder than the first. There was also part of the run that was a really narrow trail. If you're good at trail running, you'll do fine on this course. I was very impressed with how well marked the run course was. They did a great job.

TriUtah put this race on and they've got to be the best race organizers. I was very impressed with how well organized this race was. I will definitely continue to support TriUtah and do their races.

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