Escape to Miami is definitely one of the most difficult Olympic distance races in Miami. Although it represents a challenge, and I have done it 3 times already, being this race my first Olympic distance race I did…. This year I decided to do the sprint, since this is my year of short and fast racing, and after doing the Olympic 3 times already, it would be a good change.
After Nationals, I’ve tried to keep the training going, but with my A race past and gone, is hard to keep the motivation going. This would be a fun race and is a big test of a strong field of athletes. I use to live around the area where this race is held, so it brought a lot of good memories from that time. Plus it would be nice to see the Olympic race from another perspective.
Got to transition at 6am, time where most people were already boarding the ferry to escape island. So it was nice that I didn’t need to wake up SO early in order to be there. After transition was done it was just time to relax for 2 hours until the race start for the Olympic distance. We hang out with the team, did good warm up and got ready for the start.
The sprint start is quite different from the start of the Olympic, since you start from the park where the race is being held and not from the Escape Island like the people doing the Olympic do. It is a short swim too, and it was expected to be a scorching hot day for racing.
The entrance to the water was a bit bumpy. The terrain is uneven and has lots of little rocks, so you had to be careful walking in the water. I was on wave one and my positioning was not so great, and I was surrounded by the tall guys and my midgetness was trying to fight around the giants and not trying to get squished by them. The race started, I had a guy swim, but I was blocked a lot by the giants, which sucks since I swam faster than them, but it took me a while to get in-front of them.
The unevenness and rockiness of the shore was the same in the swim out. I was trying not to fall or even worse, cut my foot, while getting out of the water. Ran to transition and I knew that I had to go pedal to the metal on the bike. I had good results on the course before, but I was feeling heavy on the bike, like the legs were not really there for me. But still I was pushing as hard as I could. I passed a lot of people… but I was passed too. I started the race with Bobby and Migs, where Migs was in front of us, and afterwards Bobby passed me and he later passed Migs… he was a rocket on fire!
Saw some familiar faces, including little Mickey, which passed me at the end. The 20 year old kid will be one day a World Champion (you heard that here first!!!). Got to T2 and did the usual. But man! My legs felt super heavy. I rushed out of T2 and heard a lot of friends shouting at me. I wanted to close the gap between Migs and Bobby, and at least catch one of them.
Felt good at the beginning, but not even close to the first mile I was dying already. It was really hot, and then I was going up the bridge and saying don’t stop, don’t stop. Got to the top, and started to come down. So far so good, got to the aid station and pour water everywhere. This race is known for the HOT run and no shadow to cover at all. After doing the Olympic race 3 times, in where my last race was good, I was dying… by doing just half of what I did before. After the turn around I was starting to fade already, and when I saw the bridge again, I was done. I started walking, and I knew that whatever hope I had of catching people were gone. Got passed by millions but that was it for me.
Got to the top of the bridge and just let gravity take me down and just hold it together until the finish line. At least I needed to give a good face at the end of the race and Panda Kick it too!
11 out of 75
I was very disappointed at myself, but then again bad races happen, and you just need to learn from them. After this I’m taking a break. The season is over but I have one more race to go, but that will be for fun, the Key West Triathlon in December. It's been a long season!
Until next time!