Friday, March 1, 2013

Amber Ferreira's 2013 Triathlon Season is About To Begin!

On Sunday March 17th, Amber's 2013 triathlon season will begin. We will be heading down to San Juan, Puerto Rico so she can compete against some of the World's best triathletes at this 70.3 triathlon.

The Venue: Taking place in Puerto Rico's capital, San Juan, the race will be trace its way through a city with an interesting history. Puerto Rico, an unincorporated territory of the US, hosts the  second oldest European-established city in the Americas with San Juan being established in 1521. San Juan, named after John the Baptist, is, in addition to being old, also populous as it is the 46th largest city in the United States. Interestingly, it was also the location of the first shots fired by the US during WW I as an officer in the Puerto Rican infantry opened fire on an armed German supply ship it is was forcing its way out of San Juan's bay. Hopefully the only shot fired during the race will be the start cannon.
The average temperature for March is in the low 80's so it looks like a great day for spectators while not quite as good for racers looking for speedy times.
Old San Juan

The Competition: Interestingly, the participant list is not being released until March 10th(or later) so we don't have a clear idea who Amber will be racing against yet. However, last year's top five women were: Kelly Williamson, Linsey Corbin, Radka Vodickova, Magali Tisseyre and Ariene Monticeli with Nina Craft, Amanda Lovato and the speedy Jessie Donavan on their tails. I expect similiar high level competitors showing up this year.

The Swim: The swim will take place in the protected waters of the Condado Lagoon which the endangered Antillean Manatee resides. The water temp is supposed to be around 78 degrees so will not be wetsuit legal(which means a little more fatigue during the swim). The 1.2 mile swim seemed to be pretty accurate from last year's results.

The Bike: The majority of the bike course heads west from San Juan to Dorado. It is 28 mile out and back done twice and looks like it there won't be too many turns to slow riders down. However, based on the website's description "the athletes will enjoy beachfront views and some short but challenging hills". Beachfront views means the potential for wind and hills means hills. They also use "endure" as the verb of choice describing what the athletes will be doing during their 56 mile ride. In races I do, I always prefer, "meander, lally-gag or cruise".

The Run: Based on last year's results, this race must either be very hot(likely) or very hilly(also likely based on the elevation profile online) because except for Kelly Williamson's strong run performance none of the usual strong runners posted all that good results. OR it could just be that they were just trying to enjoy themselves as this run sounds awesome. It courses through Old San Juan(which is actually an island separated from the rest of San Juan) and the turn around point is at the entrance of the famous Fort San Felipe del Morro. This 16th century fort was made to protect the town from attack by sea. It looks like a great place to explore.

Wall Surrounding the City
 The Vacation: Amber and I will be staying down for a while to make a nice vacation out of this trip and there looks to be some fun hikes(the island has 4,000 footers-should I try to climb them all in winter? I may actually have a chance) to do as well as the usual Carribean fun stuff.

Date and Time: The race starts at 6:50(pros) on March 17th. Follow Amber at

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