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The Sprint

Author : Carrick Armer

PhotoCredit : Pyro

Date Posted : 2018/07/08

CanadaWoman Sprint Tri start

The Sprint Tri race of the CanadaMan/Woman took place on a fine, sunny, warm morning in Lac Megantic. The start - men's race first, ladies and teams second - was fast and furious as expected for a sprint tri swim. The 750m triangular course headed out from the Baie des Sables campsite, round two turn buoys - one of which delayed the start as it had been placed a decent distance out of position - and back to the beach and the single transition zone. While air temperatures had warmed up to the low-mid twenties, water temp around 15°C - on the cool side but pleasant for a race swim, and even warm enough for journalists wading in to knee-depth to capture the start (at least once they'd removed wallets, car keys and mobile phones from their pockets...), and the wind was low so there was little chop to deal with. The fastest out of the water was 16 year old Benjamin St-Pierre, with a good lead over his nearest chasers. Unfortunately he'd lose that lead on the bike.

After a quick walk/jog with the bikes out of transition, following a great path out of the campsite/transition area onto tarmac, the competitors hit trouble straight away. Immediately after the timing mates - which they have to walk over due to the ankle tag timing system - the bike leg started on a short steep incline, causing many of the riders issues with bikes in wrong gear, struggling to clip into pedals  while trying to also get moving, etc. There was much wobbling across the road, and those who'd scouted the transition and geared accordingly were seen looking slightly smug as they dropped their rivals. After that, the remainder of the course was an undulating 10km outlap towards Piopolis before the turnaround and returning on the same route, braking like crazy down that troublesome first hill to be able to dismount and walk over the timing mat again. One racer had worse luck and ended up walking even more than just the timing mats, having had a front puncture at 7km that he couldn't repair, and had walked the remainder of course.

The run route was again somewhat undulating, with a mix of tarmac sections and singletrack trails, a good quantity of mud after some recent thunderstorms, and with a surprisingly tricky descent down a wintertime ski/snowboard park near the finish. Fortunately for the racers it was just descending an easy beginner piste, not through the rails and kickers lined up just to the runners right. The steep entrance ramp did cause a few pauses and exclamations as runners approached the lip and dropped in with a mix of exhileration and trepidation. One racer also dropped in with his shoes held firmly in his hands, for reasons I couldn't fully understand. He seemed to be running comfortably enough barefoot though.

In the Men's race, Philippe Tremblay took the win in 01:13:30.4 over early leader Benjamin St-Pierre in second and last year's Sprint winner Matthew Le Bolloch in third. In the Women's race, Elizabeth Pellerin took first place, with Marie-France Roy second and Maite Galipeau-Theberge third. The first and second ladies are both racing in the Team competition in the X-Tri tomorrow, along with Julie Beauchemin who came in sixth place, so the warm-up race bodes well for their relay team! 

Full results are available on the links below:
Solo results: https://www.sportstats.ca/display-results.xhtml?raceid=93788 
Teams results: https://www.sportstats.ca/display-results.xhtml?raceid=93789

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About The Author

CarrickArmer
Known as 'Pyro'. An adventure racer & skilled paddler who says he's a 'picture taker and word herder'. He's reported for SleepMonsters for many years, including World Championships, the Alaska Expedition Race, and Raid Gaspesie in Canada. He'll get where he needs to be to get the story and some great photos and then he'll have a beer.

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