Wildflower 2016

Last weekend I headed back to Wildflower to start the 2016 race season. I really enjoyed racing here in 2014 and was very much looking forward to toeing the line again, especially since I now felt I knew the course much better and hoped to improve on my 5th place finish from two years prior.

I got through the swim and the first run feeling ok, then got onto the bike. Unfortunately, about a mile into the course, I took a hard turn and my aerobars dropped. The base bar ended up being loose in the stem and I had to ride rather cautious until I got to the first aid station. I stopped there and asked for bike tools and proceeded to try and tighten the loose bolts. However, these particular bolts are angled and without a bent allen key, I could not access it. I tried to maneuver things around to try and make it work, but I just couldn't make it happen.

After about ten minutes of getting nowhere, I got back on the course and tilted the bars upwards and tried to keep leverage with my elbows. It wasn't the best set up, but it got me through the bike leg and I was able to finish out the day (and race) with a steady run.

I had not had any issues during pre-race rides and even though I presumed all was well, I should have rechecked all my bolts and made sure all was race ready. It is a mistake I had to learn the hard way and one I will be sure not to repeat.

At any rate, it's on to Ironman Texas on May 14th.

Now, the photos:

 Pretty sure Petro snapchatted from every mile marker.

Pretty sure Petro snapchatted from every mile marker.

 Pre-race spinning

Pre-race spinning

 More pre-race spinning

More pre-race spinning

 Turnaround selfies above Lake Nacimiento

Turnaround selfies above Lake Nacimiento

 Lake Nacimiento. Starting to fill back up.

Lake Nacimiento. Starting to fill back up.

 Running on Oak Shores back roads.

Running on Oak Shores back roads.

 Thanks to the personalized cap from Sanitas Brewing.

Thanks to the personalized cap from Sanitas Brewing.

 I was tied for the lead at this point.

I was tied for the lead at this point.

 Petro came through 2nd in his age group off of <10 miles of run training per week as bike racing has been his main gig this year.

Petro came through 2nd in his age group off of <10 miles of run training per week as bike racing has been his main gig this year.

 I had to drive since Petro had the faster bike split.

I had to drive since Petro had the faster bike split.

 Post Wildflower chow down at Jeffrey's. Becoming a tradition.

Post Wildflower chow down at Jeffrey's. Becoming a tradition.

 Got to do a sweet pre-flight ride on Sunday above Palo Alto. Thanks to Petro for the loaner bike and to Vinnie for lending out his visor helmet.

Got to do a sweet pre-flight ride on Sunday above Palo Alto. Thanks to Petro for the loaner bike and to Vinnie for lending out his visor helmet.

Really love racing Wildflower and hope to be back for the 35th anniversary next year. For those who have never raced here, you need to put this one on your list.

Until next time,

Justin