I did not do this course last year, as I was the Sherpa for Irene, and really excited to take come pictures of her. One thing I noticed immediately was how tender my feet are on the pavement of the parking lot, it was like sharp pins stabbing my feet as I walked around and to the start of the swim portion of the race.
As the white caps took off, the guys in my group noticed the current. All the swimmers in the first group got swept to the right of the first buoy and had to course correct to the left. Then the woman's group took off a few minutes later and the same thing happened to them. Everyone in our group shifted left and aimed for the boat that was left of the buoy which helped us all use the current to our advantage.
As I waited for our start, I stayed out of the way of some swimmers and thinking, will anyone bump into me. A few minutes later, I touched someones feet. I shifted left, so that I he would not kick me in the face, then I notice my right arm hit his hip, then over his shoulder. I felt a little sorry that I swam over someone, at the same time not really :)
I got to the first buoy and made the right turn, the current was helping me and I got to the second buoy fairly quickly. Then off to the third buoy and the current was pushing me out, and it was getting tough. I then started swimming back to shore, and every time I did my sighting, it felt like I was not going anywhere. Eventually, I was able to stand up and walk about 50 yards to shore.
The walk back to the transition was again like walking on pins and needles. This time it also felt like my feet were bricks. The water was cold, but I did not think my feet would be frozen. My bike was at the last row before the bike and run exit. I whipped off my wet suit got my bike shoes on, and off I went. Heading out, there was a fairly strong headwind which was not fun. On the way back, it helped. I peddled strong but not that strong because I wanted to run. I got back to the bike entry and as I hopped off my bike, I felt a charlie horse in my right leg. Hobbling back to the transition was hard and my feet still felt like frozen blocks.
Got my shoes on and did my run. Nothing special about the course. It was an out and back. What was great was to see all my friends cheering me on the run. During the bike, my head was down to save on the neck strain of looking up. Well, as I headed toward the finish, so many Wildwood Warriors lined up the side before the finish to cheer me on. Irene was a few minutes behind and I cheered her on as she rounded the turn.
It was a good day, especially for Irene. She was very comfortable with the swim, which is a lot for her!
Here is Irene's Race from last year.