Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Pumpkinman Triathlon

Location: South Berwick, ME(right over the border from Portsmouth, NH)
Venue: Pumpkinman Half-Ironman Triathlon
Race Lead-Up: "Amber Ferreira, the 2009 New Hampshire female triathlete of year, is considered the favorite to win the women's half-iron race."- September 09, 2010 edition of Foster's Daily Democrat.
Results: 1st Female, 15th overall in a blazing time of 4:32:02.
The Background: Amber's sister Deidre did this race last year and praised it, not only for its great scenery and excellent post-race meal, but also for the organization that lead to a supremely well run race. Luckily, despite concerns that she may not be able to do it due to the proximity to Kona, Amber decided that it would actually be the perfect tune-up race. She would not be disappointed.

Amber and I stayed over in Portsmouth the night before the race, going out to the Portsmouth Brewery for dinner and checking out all the local shops. The next morning we arrived in South Berwick and we quickly met up with the rest of the S2 crew members doing the race: Sean Snow, John Rhymes and Lisa Ransom. All four were to compete as Elites so that they could compete for prize money.

Amber came out of water in 25:21, well ahead of the second female, which she only would further distance herself from. Based on Amber's goal of biking 21mph, I figured that I could get a 45 minute run in, get back stretch out and still catch her on the tail end of the bike. I went for the run on the bike course so I could cheer on the age-groupers while running. I came back to find Greg Whitman drying himself off after swimming in the lake. Due to the road closures, we decided to run to grab some breakfast as we both hadn't eaten yet. After taking 3 1/2 miles to get to the breakfast(found by Greg's cool Droid), hastily eating our eggs, homefries and toast we rushed back so that we could see Amber.

Just in time! Instead of Amber biking 21mph as predicted, she biked 22.3 mph so she got in nearly the same time as we did. We ran beside her for about a half mile, shouting our encouragements and getting her pace(thanks again to the Droid) which was at 6:30. She was looking great. We then ran to the next place where we could see her and about 25 minutes later we saw her again, again running with her long enough to get her pace which had slowed to 6:40's. We saw her twice more along the course, each time with a pretty steady running pace though slowing a bit. Due to the relatively hilly last few miles she ended up finishing with a half marathon time of 1:32 which she wasn't pleased with but I thought was pretty good since I was struggling to keep up with her for those short spurts.

The post-race celebration lived up to its praise: A turkey dinner with all the fixin's served with silverware and on actual plates, with a beer tent. Additionally, the day was made more lucrative as Amber won the first place prize money as well as winning her choice of some pretty awesome jackets from this cool company out of Portsmouth(more information to come on this-we plan on going over and checking it out in person).

A great way to end the summer triathlon season. Now on to the fall season and KONA!!!!

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