Rock City Triathlon, St.Thomas
In the beginning of January I realized that I have lived in the Caribbean for five months, and in that time I have only seen two islands, St. Kitts and Nevis. So when Winston suggested making a trip to St. Thomas for the Rock City Sprint tri, I figured what better way to visit another island.
Winston and I flew out on January 21. Winston was staying with a friend of his and I was staying at the race hotel and venue Island Beachcomber hotel. We arrived a bit later than scheduled, so I quickly put my bike together, got my race gear in order, and ate a pasta dinner at the hotel restaurant.
The race was scheduled for an 8:30am start, so I woke up early with ample time to get ready, set-up in transition, and warm up. The atmosphere was friendly between all the competitors, and I quickly made a few new tri friends. Some quick announcements and course overview and the race was ready to start.
The swim was a two-loop triangular pattern in the bay. The water was warm to me, although others said it was cold. The water was very cloudy, but there was little chop and no waves. I made quick work of the swim, coming out with the lead group and about second female. The run to transition was through the grounds of the hotel, to a grassy area near the main road.
The bike was about 15 miles out-and-back. I was warned there were hills, but holy cow, these were hills like I have never seen before! A triple on the front was required, which I did not have. I had to unclip and walk a bit, as did others. Just as I was finishing with the big hills and feeling like I was on a roll, disaster struck. My chain snapped, which then broke my rear derailleur hanger. Darn, I was out of the race. I waited for bike support to come by and pick-up my wounded bike and me. I did get to watch the race from the back seat of the race vehicle, all the while cheering for others. After returning to the transition area I went out and ran the run course just to feel like my day was complete. Oh well, these things happen. In over five years of racing and 30+ races, this was my first DNF.
Onward to the next race and hopefully better luck next time.