Bluff Creek Triathlon: Andy's Report

Andy Bernholtz raced the Olympic-distance at Bluff Creek Triathlon
by Andy Bernholtz, Kyle’s Bikes 2014 Triathlon Team Andy Bernholtz raced the Olympic-distance at Bluff Creek TriathlonBluff Creek Olympic 1500 m Swim, 40 km Bike, 10 km Run Don Williams Park, Boone County, Iowa August 10, 2014


We were shuttled over to the start from transition as the race started on the opposite side of the lake. I had just enough time to take a GU, drink my Gatorade, throw on my wetsuit, and jump into the water for a quick practice swim. As soon as I exited the water, the athlete briefing began. Without much time to take in the swim course the gun went off and the Olympic-distance athletes were off in a hurry. We ran into the water from the beach getting into the best spot for a strong race. Within the first 100 the right side of my goggles began to fill up with water. I ignored it and just used the left side to sight. Luckily the googles must have sealed shut and some of the water leaked back out as I was able to gain some vision back. This was one of the strongest swims I have ever had in a race, and the strongest in an Olympic-distance with a time of 26:44. The clock on my watch when I exited the water was at 25 low. The added time was the long run up the beach to transition before crossing the timing mat.


Andy rushed through T1 at the Bluff Creek TriathlonI stripped the wetsuit off, grabbed my helmet and my bike, and ran out of transition. I clipped in rather quickly and began the roughly 25 mile ride. The first five or so miles were very quick until arriving at Twister Hill. My goodness that hill will eat up any momentum or speed you have in a hurry. I have never switched to the lowest gear on the bike in a race until now. This is an out and back race so you get the backend of the hill on the way back. It was still the strongest I have ever felt for an Olympic-distance ride, as I was able to keep a great pace over 22 mph. While on the bike I had one bottle of Gatorade with a scoop of GU endurance adding extra calories, and I took one GU packet. My finishing bike time was just under 1:08.


I slipped on my shoes, grabbed my running belt and exited transition. This run course is not the most scenic and it tends to be hot and sticky. I do however enjoy the cross country feeling you get at the start and the finish of the race as you zig zag through a dirt trail. The first 3–4 miles were a bit shaky as I still felt the effects of a strong ride and those nasty hills. I did however gain some momentum the final miles as I was able to pick up the pace and run into the finish chute very comfortably. My run time was 46:01.


Andy placed well at the Bluff Creek TriathlonMy finishing time was 2:22:29, a PR by 17 minutes. My previous best was the 2013 Hy-Vee Triathlon with a time of 2:39. Last year, I completed Bluff Creek in 2:51. I beat my race best time by almost 29 minutes which is crazy for me to even gather the improvements I have made in one year’s time. I give a lot of credit to Ironman training and the dedication I put behind triathlon this year. I also give credit to Kyle’s Bikes for allowing me to be a part of a great team! Oh, and the incredibly sweet ride I have this year!!! I also want to thank all the great people I have met in the past year in the biking and triathlon communities. Next Race: Big Pig 1/2 on 8/17/2014.
Full results from Bluff Creek Triathlon are online at True Time Racing.
7 years ago
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