Archive for May, 2011

Last Weekend at the Races

Posted in Triathlon with tags , , , , , , , on May 26, 2011 by brianestover

It’s been a hectic week and blogging has slipped into the background this week.

There were some major going on’s with Accelerate 3 athletes this past weekend.

At the Tucson Triathlon I finished fourth and Billy finished 12th overall. Both of us won our age groups. I had a horrible swim, rode well in no mans land while some of the guys up the road were able to ride in a legal group then late in the last mile of the run ran three guys down. Couldn’t quite catch 3rd place overall although he was coming fast to me. I thought maybe, just maybe I could catch him. THen he looked back and started running for his life.

Old guys ruled at this race. Only three people in the top 20 were 30 or younger. This was one of the faster fields in recent years at this race. It’s tough to be in the 35+ age group in AZ.

Francois finished fourth overall after being directed off course on the bike at the Armed Forces Day Triathlon.

Rich raced his first ever IM at IM Texas. This was a bitter sweet race for him. He hurt his back playing with his kids, twice, and lost eight consecutive weeks of running leading into this race. He only started hitting the roads three weeks before the race. He still managed to place 128th overall and sneaked into the top 20 in his age group finishing 17th.

Wes set a new olympic distance PB at the Columbia Triathlon finishing 7th in his age group. This is a tough course to set a PB on, which bodes well for him. Maybe not so well for his age group competitors though.

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BOOM at FL 70.3

Posted in Triathlon with tags , , , , on May 15, 2011 by brianestover

That’s the sound of Kerry destroying the rest of the W30-34 age group field at the FL 70.3 today. results

First place in the W30-34, 4th overall in the women’s age group field and top 15 overall in the entire women’s race (I’m pretty sure jimmy Archer is a dude even though they have him winning the women’s race)!

Topping it off, she moves up from 3rd in the age group last year to first this year. Great job Kerry!

Black Rubber

Posted in Triathlon, Wetsuit with tags on May 14, 2011 by brianestover

I opened the big box and what do I see? Four sleek, black wetsuits for me!

Wetsuits ready for the swim off

Since my previous wetsuit no longer does triathlon, I asked the good folks at Trisports for not one, not two but four wetsuits to pit against each other. I do this for you my 21 readers, so that you can select the most dominate wetsuit to dominate in. And maybe so I get into the pool more then once a week. Let’s not forget that part, but really, it’s all about you.

Since I’m limited on time, I chose four wetsuits that seemed like fast suits based upon what I know about wetsuits. These suits also seemed based upon sizing charts to be good fits.

From my previous testing we know most suits will fall within a fairly narrow window. The goal of this testing will be to see which suit is the fastest of this selection and hopefully gain some fitness in the process. Once again I’ll be doing cross over testing swimming each suit two times. The first suit will also be the last suit tested in order to reduce increasing fitness from influencing the results.

I’m in pretty decent swim shape right now based upon last weekend’s triathlon although in review of the swim, those guys blew me off their feet in the last 150 meters. Currently I’m a one speed wonder in the pool. recent 100 repeat times have been on average :02 faster then I’m holding for 400 and 500 repeats.

The four suits I chose were the Orca 3.8, QR Superfull, the TYR Category 3 and the Zoot Prophet.

I’ll be posting results here soon. The goal is to get this testing done fairly quickly.

Nineteen Frequency

Posted in Triathlon, Wetsuit with tags , , , , , , on May 11, 2011 by brianestover

Since I currently am sans wet suit, the good folks at Trisports.com let me borrow two for my race last weekend. I choose the Nineteen Frequency to do the race in leaving the other suit at home.

The Frequency is Nineteen’s top of the line wet suit. The main chest panel and legs are 5mm to float you high and make you fast. The arms, lats and lower back have a very flexible 1.5mm #40 rubber panelling. This enables the arms to have a full range of motion. I did not notice any restriction when swimming. The 1.5mm arms also make the suit very easy to peel off the top of your body.

Nineteen Frequency

Wingspan System

There are several features and a lack of a feature which make this suit an awesome suit. Lets get to the lack of feature because it’s this lack of feature that helps a suit swim faster. There are no water gripping panels in the forearms. It seems every top of the line suit has some sort of panels. While I’ve not seen the data for the latest round of suits (2010 and on), I have seen data showing that these gripper panels at best have no propulsive function and in many suits actually cause the suit to be slower then the same suit without gripper panels. Unfortunately most companies view gripper panels as a must have to satisfy the I need another gimmick crowd.

The features that make this suit a good suit include the 2mm panel on the back of the calf and the legs that facilitate easy removal of the suit in transition. The suit is also cut higher in the back of the legs to help slip over your heels. Nineteen calls it EasyOff Legs and the suit does come off easily.

The other feature that in my opinion Nineteen does better then many of the brands is what they call Kungfu grip arms. It’s a small piece of silicone around the inside of the wrists. This helps keep the suit locked to your wrist and helps prevent water from flowing up into the arms upon entry and catch. During my race I never noticed any water flowing up into the suit. Unlike some other suits I’ve swam in, this suit is easy to remove over the wrists and hands. My previous wet suit always engaged you in a wrestling match to get out of it. The KungFu gripper tape works better since you are not wasting your time or energy wrestling with it in T1.

KungFu Arm Gripper

There were two small things I did not like about his suit. The first was upon jumping into the water I noticed water immediately entering trough the zipper area. The second was the velcro closure. The side that closes over the collar sealing it shut has been reinforced. While that reinforcement makes it easy to grab and open upon exiting the water, it took several tries to position it so that it did not scratch my neck. The neck collar itself is very comfortable and well designed. I never thought about it, did not get a wet suit hickey even without body glide and never had any water leak in while swimming. All of which are very, very good things.

Collar Tab

This is a very well thought out and designed suit that fits true to the size chart. It’s non gimmicky, it’s designed to keep water out, float you high, help you swim fast and make T1 as easy as possible. If you are looking to get out in front of the crowd and swim fast, this could be your suit. You can read more about it here.

Triumph and Tradegy

Posted in Triathlon with tags , , , , , , , on May 8, 2011 by brianestover

It’s with a heavy heart that I start this blog post. One of the Accelerate 3 athletes lost her son this week. Losing a family member is always a tragedy especially when they are only 23. My condolences go out to Noreen and her family in this difficult time.

On the racing side, it’s turned into a pretty good weekend. Cory finished IM St. George in a new PB dropping 28 minutes off his Ironman PB. His effort netted him his first trip to the medical tent ever post race. A double congratulations go out for his efforts. IM St. George is considered one of the hardest IM courses in the world. This is the second year in a row Cory has lowered his IM PB on this course. Last year was a 50 minute PB, this year was a 28 minute PB. That’s not shabby at all!

James finished fifth overall at the White Lake Half today in NC. They cancelled the swim keeping his streak alive of swims being cancelled for every half he has done this year. This was a bittersweet result for him. Bitter in the fact that he is disappointed that he did not run as fast at Nola 70.3, sweet because even though he never felt on top of his game, he still ran his second fastest half run ever. This race shows he continues to make significant progress towards his goals of racing elite in the next year. Looking towards his late season half’s he is set up to swim a huge PB for the swim portion of a half, if they let him swim.

I raced up in Phoenix at the Iron Gear Sports triathlon. Which may not have been the smartest thing I’ve ever done. I woke up with a sore throat but raced anyway. A decent swim had me out in 7th but a blazing fast transition put me on the bike course in 4th position. Historically my transitions have been ok if not a bit on the slow side of fast. But this year I’ve started the bike or run legs at many a race thinking “holy shit I was in and out of there like Superman changing in a phone booth.” My bike was the 5th fastest on the day and left me in 2nd overall starting the run and ahead of third by about a minute. Unfortunately my lack of run speed was evident by my plummet down the results sheet faster then a hooker taking off her clothes. I dropping six spots losing the majority of those spots over the last 2km.

A wiped out Coach Brian

Duathlon Nationals Pictorial

Posted in Triathlon with tags , , , on May 5, 2011 by brianestover

I’d like to thank Tom and Sarah at Trisports.com for posting and or sending me these pics from Duathlon Nationals 2011. It really as a great race, rather competitve and the fields were tightly packed. For instance :24 separated the 7th fastest and 16th fastest bike split. 17:05 on the first run had you in 11th place on the overall. Run one minute slower and you were sitting in 35th place.

They say one picture is worth a thousand words. That is much better then me typing a thousand words.

Thank you again to those who took the pics.

Men 40-49 50 meters into the race

M40-49 at 1.5 miles

Brian Stover 1st loop on the bike.

Francois Modave 5th fastest bike split

Billy Oliver's spiffy yellow bike


Scott Schraff and his pink socks

Super Sunday Sweep

Posted in Triathlon with tags , , , , , , , , , on May 4, 2011 by brianestover

James blitzed the Mayday Biathlon in Morganton, NC. He lead wire to tape and set a new 5k run PB in the process. It wasn’t enough that he gapped the field on the run, he also made sure no one got close with the days fastest bike split. His efforts earned him the $125 first place check which amounts to just over $2 per minute of racing. In triathlon speak that’s not too shabby of an earning per minute rate.

Heading south to Florida, Kerry it seems, won the women’s age group race at St. Anthony’s Triathlon for the third time….in four years. The results list her second overall but first in her age group. The person who beat her originally was first overall but got a drafting penalty to end up dropping a spot. Kerry and I were both worried about this race. She changed jobs, changed work schedules an had fair bit of down time during that transition. She managed to get enough work done to get the job done and have a solid race all around.

What do James and Kerry have in common for the year? They’ve both won cash while making the dash to the finish line this season. This is the 8th or 9th year in a row Accelerate 3 athletes have won cash racing.

Five athletes raced this past weekend. Two age group fifth places and an age group sixth place as well as one of those athletes sneaking into the top 20 overall at Duathlon Nationals. A you never even got to see the front of my jersey overall win at the Mayday Biathlon and it appears to be an age group win along with topping the rest of the women’s age group field at St. Anthony’s.

When it came time to produce results, Accelerate 3 athletes stepped up to the line and delivered.

This coming weekend sees Accelerate 3 athletes racing at Ironman St. George, the Iron Gear Sports Triathlon and the White Lake Half.