Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Briar's Youth Triathlon: "Tri 4 Gold"

Finally, I am putting together a race report for Briar's 2nd Youth Triathlon ever. He did one last year, and this was his first this year. He has been swimming 200 yard and 100 yard repeats at the pool about 3 times a week, running 1 - 2 miles 3 times a week, and playing around on his bike a lot. On Wednesdays we went to my mom and dad's subdivision and did a bike/run brick because the traffic is low there and the distance is perfect. I have tried not to be a drill sergeant, and instead let him decide when and how much he wanted to train. Do you know how that hard that is?!?! I have to admit I did make a few suggestions! But I didn't push him to do anything he didn't really want to do.

So, the triathlon consisted of a 100 yd swim/5k bike/1k run. It was called the "Tri4Gold" Youth tri and was held in the White Water water park near Atlanta. We arrived the night before - had dinner and got settled into our hotel room. He practiced putting on his helmet and shoes quickly before we went to bed. Briar woke up at 5:45 the next morning and got ready with no problem. We all loaded up and headed over to the race site around 7 a.m. He got his packet, got body marked, and then passed through the helmet and bike inspection. He was a little nervous, so J.T. threw frisby with him to help calm him down. I kept reminding him that it was "all for fun!!".

On a side note - you wouldn't believe some of the bikes those kids have!!!! Briar has Trek mountain bike, which we felt was plenty - but there were 9 year olds there with road bikes, aerobars, and racing wheels - NO LIE!!!!

The swim was held in the "lazy river" at the water park, and the transition area was in the parking lot. They had a 5 second interval start, and he was off.

He held his own during the swim and then ran to T1 which was quite a ways. He had some trouble getting his helmet on under pressure, but exited T1 with a swim/T1 time of 4:58 (11/16 in his age group).

The bike leg went around the parking lot perimeter, up a steep hill into the park, around the park and back to transition. He had a litte trouble with the hill, as he didn't change his gears soon enough, but zoomed through the rest of the course, smiled at us he went by, and got back in and out of T2 with a bike/T2 time of 11:23 (6/16 in his age group).

As he was jogging out of transition, J.T. yelled "BRIAR - This is your strong point, buddy - Go get 'em!!" And he took off like a streak of lightening!! The next time we saw him was when he came flying through the finish chute passing everyone near him. His run time was 3:21 (3/16 in his age group).(Check him out sprinting to the finish!)

Here's the bad part - 6 of the kids cut the run course way short because a volunteer had left his postion. Their run times were barely over a minute - which is obvious. The race director emailed everyone and noted that they are aware of this and apologized, but no results have been changed. The results say that Briar finished 11th out of 16 kids in his age group, but if you consider that 6 kids' times were not correct, he would have been 5th out of 16. I know that the kids did not cut the course on purpose, but I don't think it is right that some of these kids even received awards, and kept the others who were deserving, from getting one. They are evidently going to leave the results "as is". Briar wouldn't have gotten an award, as they were for 1st - 3rd place, but he knew that he done a lot better than 11th out of 16 judging from all the kids he had passed. And he was quite disappointed when he saw the results and thought he had finished 11th. So even though I was able to show him that he was really 5th - it's kinda hard to erase that disappointment he had felt. I know that it's only a kids race and is supposed to be for fun and all that - but in my opinion (which is warped by my competitive nature according to some people) - if you are giving awards and keeping up with places, it's about more than fun - even to a kid. And that should be respected by those organizing the event. Enough said.

Inspite of the little timing error - we totally enjoyed the Triathlon. The organizers made it very much like the real thing. They had a great post race party. Briar ate popsicles and a Chick-Fil-A chicken biscuit. They had someone there who had competed in one of the early Hawaii IronMan races, and told some great stories that had all the kids' attention. And afterwards, we had a day full of sliding down waterslides and bragging about who could get to the bottom the fastest. Bo finally slid down a few on his own, and we all had a great time.

Briar will also be doing the "Kids of Steel Youth Tri" this coming Saturday. This was his first tri last year - where placed 3rd in the 7&8 age group(he was 8). He has to compete as a 10 year old now, though, due to that stupid "Age Up" rule. We'll see how he does!!


TriSaraTops said...

That might be the cutest thing I have ever seen.

I especially loved the last pic! Looks like the little guy has caught the tri bug! :)

Garou said...

Those were some phenomenal times! Great report - sorry to hear about the kids cutting the course though.

Michele said...

I am SO proud of Briar!!!
Tell him good luck from rochell!

BTW It's a good thing I have been posting all your workout otherwise people would be thinking you have been just sitting around on your butt!!!

Firefly's Running said...

Wow! I do not blame him from being upset with the "cheaters". He still did really good despite the errors.

jkrunning--Just Keep Running said...

Congrats to him!! It's too bad the race was flawed, but hopefully Briar isn't too disappointed still.

Bridgette said...

Sounds like too much fun! I can't wait for my little guys to get bigger!

Cliff said...

Great report. Your son did great. Especially the run part (and we know that's where it really matters).

There is a tri 4 kid in my city next month. I will see if i can go and help out.

Cant' believe the kids have aerobars and race wheels. They ride more high tech than me :)

backofpack said...

Wow, he did a great job!

Rae said...

How cute! It looks like he had a great time. I know he would beat me!!

Papa Louie said...

Too bad about the timing error. But it looks like he had fun. Congratulations mom for your support and encouragement to Briar on a well run triathlon. He runs them like me, behind in the swim but try like heck to catch everyone on the bike and finish strong on the run.

E-Speed said...

I remember seeing the crazy kids bikes at St. Anthony's last year, can you imagine having to buy thema new one every time they grew? yikes!

Great job Briar! Way to rock the run!!!

rice said...

That last photo and the one with him sitting are awesome.