Ben shows great early season fitness in Santos, Brazil


I attacked the bike and was pulling a string of people behind me, each separated by the required 15 meters. Around 10 kilometers, Fabio Corvalho and Juraci Moreira came around me and Fabio said, “rotate leaders until we catch [the front pack].” It seemed like a good idea, but we had a marshal right there. I waited for Fabio to get to the front then passed him again and tried to stay there. He came around again and I fell back to 15 meters, then another cyclist passed me and pulled into the space between me and Fabio. I thought he would keep going forward and attempt to lead for a while, but I started to fall back as quickly as I could (I stopped pedaling).

Unfortunately, the marshal thought I was at fault and told me stop. I’m not sure why I was singled out for a penalty, but after standing down for a full minute, I got back up and started channeling my frustration into the pedals. I was less than 15km into the 40km race, and by the time I reached 25km, I had passed the same group that I was riding with before, less Fabio and Juraci who had already gotten away and did end up catching the leaders; a huge advantage. When I saw the leaders, they had a 5 motorcycle escort forming an echelon around all the cyclists (all Brazilian) in that group. I’m stoked that I was able to ride nearly as fast as the top guys, with a full minute on the side of the road!

Starting the run I was with my roommate, Francisco Serrano (represented Mexico in Beijing), and another Brazilian athlete. I tried to hold pace with the Brazilian who had passed me toward the end of the bike, but after the first kilometer, he started pulling away. Francisco went with him and by 8km they had built a 45 second lead over me. I had my Forerunner 405 on and was looking at my mile splits, which were starting to fade in the heat, but rather than getting discouraged, I just gazed ahead at the road, thought about relaxing my upper body, and put in everything I had left. I ended up closing the gap on Francisco from 45 seconds to 6 seconds in the last 2k, which was pretty painful. I was 8th place by the end. Reinaldo Colucci won, followed by Paulo Miyashiro, and Fabio Carvalho ended up in 3rd with a similar run split to mine.

With regards to the weather, we lucked out. There was a high cloud cover that kept the sun from being quite as intense as it has been. It was still quite hot, and so humid that the air was sweating, but certainly not as bad as some races I’ve done in the past. The Santos Triathlon exposed some things for me to work on, but things like beach starts and penalties are fairly rare, so hopefully my next race will lack those features. Despite the penalty, I’m happy with how I rode my bike, and I still had a lot of fun competing. The course was really safe and the event organizers did a great job with the setup.

The post Ben shows great early season fitness in Santos, Brazil appeared first on Garmin Blog.

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