Rev3 Triathlon Course PreviewMay 12, 2009
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Last weekend I made a little road trip down to Connecticut to scope out the bike and run courses for the Rev3 half ironman next month.
Once I got there, I realized I wasn’t the only one with that idea. There was an lonesome Rev3 tent in the parking lot and a bunch of cars with empty bike racks. I felt like I was late to a party that I wasn’t even invited to, until I remembered getting an email about an official re-ride of the course that left that morning. DOH!
But actually worked out pretty well because the one thing I forgot, the damn cue sheet, I was able to bum off of a friendly rider who was just finishing up the course. Sure it was sopping wet (hopefully more from the rain than sweat) but I was thankful to have it either way. I love making new friends with stranger triathletes.
I got a few requests to scope out specific parts of the course from some of my other tri friends who are racing with me, so here is my recap of the bike and run courses.
Total ascent: 2395 ft
- Right out of T1 you are on a slight downhill. This is nice if you don’t get your feet in your shoes right away. You can just coast for a mile or so until you get clipped in.
- There is a quick left and immediate right on to Cat Swamp Road at mile 3 on a slight down hill. Nothing huge, but worth mentioning so you don’t freak out if you come flying down the hill and see the T intersection ahead of you.
- Mile 10 has a sweet cheering section. The brown one was pretty rude though. He kept trying to mount the black one, but she wasn’t having it. Ladies, expect some rude comments and cat calls.
- Mile 17 is a really fun long descent. I got up to about 40 or 45 mph without any problem. It slowly winds through Black Rock State Park and along a reservoir. The bottom of the hill is a sweeping right turn. I went through it at about 30 mph, so no worries about hitting a stop sign or any other obstacles on this section.
- Once you take the left on to Rout 254 at about 25, be prepared for some hurtin’. Take in some water or a gel. You’ll need it. The climb does level off a few times, but just keeps getting steer and longer. I was hoping to stay out of the granny gear (I have a triple chain ring) but that just wasn’t happening. I’m glad I had it. You can slow down and take it easy, but that just means the pain lasts longer. It will definitely be a challenge to not kill my legs too hard here.
- After the top of 254, you take two quick lefts and head downhill on Camp Dutton Road. This is a short downhill, but it ends at a T intersection after about a mile or so. Nothing crazy, it is good to expect it ahead of time. You take a left at the bottom and head through some vinyards and really nice roads after that.
- From then on out it is all smaller (but still hard) hills and a nice gentle descent from about mile 45-50. The only stop is where you cross Rt 6, but I’m guessing that it will be blocked off from traffic, so there shouldn’t be any wories and you can fly through.
- When you come up a hill with rock walls along both sides, you are at about mile 56 and have a nice mile downhill back into T2. I’m going to ease up and take my feet out of my shoes at that point to get ready to run.
Overall: The bike is a killer. I was expecting it to be hard, but it completely blew past my expectations. There aren’t really any rolling hills (by my definition of rollers). Lots of steep climbs, but two really fun and fast descents. I met two guys who had also just finished the course and they both agreed, it is stupidly hard. All of the roads are beautful and have great scenery along state parks, wildlife reserves, farm land and vinyards, but some of the hills may make you cry a little.
Total ascent: 400 ft
- You head out on the run in the same direction as the the bike. A nice gentle downhill to help get your run legs back under you.
- At mile 3 you take a right onto a quiet dirt road. There is lots of tree cover and the shade will be nice. The elevation map has a steep climb at about mile 4. It looks pretty bad on the map, but isn’t so tough in person. It is steep, but really short.
- Immediately after the hill, you head back on to paved roads. The dirt road section is short, but packed and not very rocky. If you would normally run in racing flats, go for it.
- At mile 7.5 you come up through the same hill along the rocks walls as the bike course. From there you see the lake off on the right and know that you are are more than half way there.
- From there it is a nice easy downhill up until mile 10, where there is a mile long slow climb. Nothing crazy, but that late in the run, it is good to expect it.
- Once you crest the hill at mile 11, you do a short fast downhill and loop back around to the finish. You are home free!
Overall: The run course is just as scenic as the bike course, but not nearly as brutal. It is definitely going to be a nice change of pace. As long as I still am able to run off of the bike, the run should be a blast.
Only three weeks to go and I’m heading up to New Hampshire this weekend for some long mountain climbing to do some last minute prep for Rev3. It is my triathlon team’s training weekend, which involves swimming/biking/running until all you can do is drop your butt in the hot for the rest of the night and suck down a few beers and call it a night.
Mountains baby. MOUNTAINS!
Just over three weeks to go. Get ready people!
It turns out they changed the run course between when I ran it and race day. So for anyone that read this, and is subsequently pissed at me for making you think the run course was going to be somewhat easy (in comparison to the bike), let it be known. My Bad.