1.2 mile swim, 56 mile bike, 13.1 mile run.
Mike Davidson, N. Palm Beach FL, 4:14:46
Sally Stahlschmidt, Orlando FL, 4:59:57
The Florida Challenge was a good warmup for the Great Floridian,
an Ironman distance race being held on the same course on Oct. 23.
We were fortunate to have a cold front come through a couple of
days ago, so the morning started out at around 70 degrees, warming
to 85 and sunny by noon, without the usual high humidity.
The swim was out and back in clean, clear Lake Minneola. Wetsuits
were allowed even though the water was 78.5 degrees. (I didn't wear
one, but only because my tests show I don't swim any faster with one).
A 10 MPH onshore breeze made enough chop to slow you down a bit going
The bike course covered the first half of the Great Floridian route
and had numerous short but steep hills in the last 30 miles. I averaged
18.7 MPH, which I was quite pleased with, considering I had never
averaged over 17.5 MPH in my five previous attempts. I made good
use of my 42-28 gear going up the infamous "Sugarloaf Mountain",
passing two people walking their bikes. I had a max speed of 49 MPH,
if that gives you any idea of the course.
The run was mostly flat, unshaded, and hot. I had a 1:48 split, well
off my 1:30 half marathon PR, but still good I thought. I know two
very good runners-turned-triathletes, both normally capable of sub
6:00 miles, that were more severly affected. One finished at a 9:00
pace and another had to walk. (Both still beat me, though). Several
aid stations ran out of water late in the race.
Next year the Florida Challenge will be moved to June as an Ironman
qualifier. If you're planning on doing it, here is the weather
forecast: water 84 degrees, air 78 degrees and 100% humidity at the
6:30 AM start, climbing to 92-94 degrees and sunny by noon. I hope
their medical tent is well equipped.
#include <disclaimer.h> |____|