The Big Kahuna Half-Ironman Triathlon

Sept 9, 2007

I'm in good late-season form for the swim. It'll be a year before I'm re-hab'ed sufficiently to run and bike a triathlon so for me it was yet another swim bandit day. Dave Delucchi and Rick Ferrell signed on too, so the Three Amigos ride again! Our wave launched at 7:30am, requiring a 6:15am wake up.... for which my alarm clock (or was it the operator?) was not up to the task. Woke at 6:45am, decided to get into my wetsuit straight off, gulped a cup of water, and ran out the door, biked to the start, locked the bike to the Ideal Bar/Grill patio, and ran to the starting area. Couldn't find Rick or Dave until after I'd packed away the camera. But Diane D was there and got a nice shot of the group moments before the start of our wave.

6:45am and alarm clock failure, plan B is dress for the swim immediately. A straight-arm self portrait

A gray, foggy, bleary eyed day, at sunrise. These tri's have no respect for astronomer's hours

Yellow Cap'rs go off

The course was out to a bouy beyond the left edge, to the orange bouy at top, and then to the orange bouy way beyond the pier at far right, then in.

The swim course was 1.2 miles, starting on the east side of the wharf, a wide triangle out past the end of the wharf, then north to the next bouy, and a right turn on into Cowell's beach. I started near the left front of the narrow chute, and ran/race walked into the water. Dave and Rick ran ahead of me and I didn't see Ferrell again. I took a very wide angle and thus avoided the white water melee. Although it's a slightly longer swim, I believe I save overall time by getting into my stroke and avoiding anaerobic moments. I swam through the slower members of the earlier wave even before the first bouy, and so kept my eye out for the rest of the race. I did have one stretch late where I just swam good and hard without sighting.... and wham! a hard kick to the eye by one of those slow purple cap'ers. Yow. But the water now in my goggles cleared away the fog and allowed me good vision for the final sprint in.

Red Caps go off, in front of the Cocoanut Grove on the Boardwalk. Then the Purple Caps, then Rick, Dave and I in the 45-49 White Cap group.


I'm saving this spot for Diane D's group shot before the starting gun

I got a nice young lady to snap this after my swim finish.

The finish, on Cowell's Beach

From start gun to leaving the water was 32:30 for me. Add a minute for getting to the timing carpet (which I did not do, because of my hip surgery), and that would put me 10th or 11th best in my age group! Top ten in a big race for Dr. Nuke, maybe. (OK, just the swim). I felt good throughout and could've kept up a strong swim for much longer. It's good to feel strong! I clapped and encouraged in more of my white-cap wave, including Dave Delucchi who came in 3 minutes later. Rick Ferrell came out at 31:00 flat. I retrieved my camera and took some more shots.

The re-hydration crew on the way to the bike transition

At the bike transition I ran into my friend and former student Amanda (right) and her friend Carol, who's boyfriend was out there.

Ferrell and our over-caffein-ated announcer at the finish line

Almost there... tough to finish a half Ironman on a half mile of sand...

Ferrell says he bonked 2 miles from the finish, but he still beat his goal of coming in under 5 hours. 4:57 - awesome performance for a Half Ironman, especially since Ironman champs come in at 8 hours.

The lei girl wonders if Ferrell is about to topple. Hang on to it, there, Rick!

Now it's me that's worried.. is Ferrell about to hurl in my general direction??

No worries - Rick never hurls! A Ferrell Family Finish

I love watching competitors take their kids across the finish too

Healthy physique's... always a good thing.

Big Dave Delucchi holds form, across the finish in 5:20. Excellent time!

Stop that watch, Dave. The competitive juices flowed a little too early in the race, according to Dave, and some pacing mistakes made for a tough last few miles. He's been focusing on running the past few years - to excellent effect - and is re-dialing in his former, formidable, tri skills

Energy bar in hand...

Dave gets flowered

A little food put some color back into those cheeks.... (or maybe it's just the orange canopy lighting)

Re-bagle'd, Dave begins to smile again, just a tad. Half Ironman's do tend to zap one, after all.

Team Awesome

Team Awesome, Reloaded

... ReReloaded

Kelsey - future Diva

Hawaiian atmosphere on the bandstand

Scary looking tiki's if you place

Rick checks...did I make top 10?...Yes! 10th in the 45-49 Age group - excellent work, Ferrell!, in a very competitive race

D & D, together... Great race, Dave! Dave finished at 5:20:27, good for 26th out of 72 in his age group.

One last memento...

...OK, one more.


Thanks gang, for another great weekend warrior adventure!

The official race results are online here.