I lined up for the swim front and center. My age group was all the older guys plus the Clydesdales, must have been close to 60 of us. I swam hard from the gun, and although I'm not fast, I managed to at least keep in touch. Not really much bumping and swimming over people until new the end when we were catching the tail enders from the waves before us.
I have to say, it was probably the hardest I'd swum in a race for a long time, having really lacked the training and fitness for the last 2-years and had my heart problems hanging over me in 2006, the week before HIM FL that year where I took the swim easy, frankly I was worried then about having heart problems etc. having been diagnosed a few days earlier with a pulmonary valve problem.
As we rounded the paddle steamer, i figure i was in 10th or 12th, something like that. As i headed out of the water, i hit/kicked a concrete block which anchored one of the bouys, after the race my foot is failry swollen but not sore. I'm icing it and I'm sure it will be ok for the half iron race in the morning.
My decision to swim without a wetuit paid off going into T1, I passed a bunch of people either slowing down trying to unzip or slowing down as they headed to the WETSUIT strippers. After a fast T1 I guessed i was maybe 2nd or 3rd, turns out I was in 1st.
Out on the bike, my legs didnt feel right, I couldnt get the speed i wanted/expected, turns out the back brake was rubbing, by then I'd been passed by 2 in my age group, I fought back and was moving much faster, on the way back into Moody Gardens I passed one of the guys, and knew the other guy couldnt be that far ahead.
T2 went really well, dismount was perfect, ran in and only slightly over shot my spot, mostly because there were no other bikes! Hat on, grab gum, left shoe, right shoe, race number and out on the run, I was pretty sure i was in 2nd. Just out on the run was Guin and the TSU team, big cheer, good luck tomorrow guys.
I pushed as hard as I could, but just after the 1st mile marker I was passed by the guy who finished 1st, then, not long afterwards by the guy who finished 2nd who I'd passed on the I'd passed on the way into T2.
I managed to hold onto 3rd until just after the 2-mile mark. I finished strong but couldnt make up any places. I waited for the awards, and Evan who finished 3rd was a minute up on me.
Fun race, very well organized. Galveston and especially Moody Gardens have recovered well from Hurricane Ike. Looking forward to the Half Iron distance race tomorrow, only expectation is be to beat my PR by 30-mins... Not much then.