Wednesday, July 11, 2012

PD Triathlon Race Report

The favourite triathlon race of the year is back. The race where at least a thousand participants in all age, sizes and capabilities gather once a year on the south of Kuala Lumpur in the town called Port Dickson (PD). PD International Triathlon (PDIT) is a must go for many seasoned and newbie triathlete. My “other” life as a triathlete started here. PDIT is my yearly pilgrimage in the Malaysian Tri world since 2004. It has been 8 years since and I’ve loved every one of them.
2011 PD Tri
This year is of no exception. I’ve learnt that in races like these where it is always a sell out to register early. Mr. Chan reported that there were close to (or reportedly) 1800 participants from the Sprint, Relay and Olympic Distance race. As usual, I failed to book/arrange for any room until last minute. Last year, we were lucky to receive a room from Ishsal (thanks bro!), else it will be my usual “drive down race morning-race-return” – and this year will be more challenging as I am due to travel to Canada in the early morning 18hours later.
Then as they say how good karma brings good tiding, we received a call late Saturday evening that there is a room available for the family. It took us just 1-hour – from Park (Lembah Kiara) to “everyone in the car, we are going to PD, NOW”. Special thanks to Kok Wai, Su Mei and Chee Seong for the additional arrangement with the room.
Ryan in PJs, that's how late we were!
Su Mei on her first Tri (OD) outing!
And that tested my prepared I am with races like these. It took me 15minutes flat – including testing out which goggles to bring for the race. Goggles, earplugs, bike, tubes, pump, helmet, bottle, cycling shoes, sunnies, run shoes, tri-top, tri-shorts, race belt. Done. Pray and hope I did not miss out anything.
Bike - DONE in 1minutes
Race stuff in Ikea bag. Cheap and effective
We arrived in PD about 2245hours and picked up the race kit from Ezan immediately. Last year, I paced with her on the race. This year, I endeavour to try that again. Bearing in mind that she has improved tremendously via dedicated training on the Tri-specific bike.
It took me another 10minutes to set the bike and all the gears up and it was sleeping time. This definitely beats waking up at 4am in the morning to drive down to PD by 5am, reach race site by 6.30am and race at 7.30am. Those additional 2 hours of sleep (waking up at 6am) sure will provide the much needed rest – and the biggest bonus, having the kids down I PD with me and wifey. Let me put on record that family is the most important things for me right now. Work-Life balance is now Life-Work balance; and we try to involve the kids as much as we can into our life outside being “just parents”.
I was out of the apartment down the starting line by 6.30am. Many years of racing has taught me many things and that is to FUEL up correctly. Energy food doesn’t work for me as it supplies momentarily energy. There need to have something more substantial that will burn slowly and fuel the whole race. My choice of food was my (what most will call) Bird Food.  Find what work for you and slowly fine tune and refine it to your (racing) need.
Cycling down to starting line a few things went through my mind. I always will remember how I struggled two years ago with low iron level and how I blanked out and went emotional about it. I will remember the good – where the like of friends that I “grew” up with racing triathlons, and how some of them are no longer with us here. I’ve not failed to say a little prayer for my late buddies – Terence Penguin, Zoob, Ngae and TSB. That morning, will not be any difference – just more new faces on the race course and many many good times with buddies on the race course.
Jimmy - know him since my TARC days.
Doc PS and friend

With Azmel - He has been consistently doing Tri!

With Kok Aik - Always nice to see him at race start and always do well in the races!
With Kok Wai - the man that got the extra room
With Cheng that share the same birthday as me. Yes, he is younger.
Cheng Sr. and Cheng Jr.
With Khoo - he will be ultra racing end of the month
Father-Daughther Khoo
Agnes, Michelle and friends
Juliana with unborn baby - Relay!
Razman with friends

Ezan with friends

Kickass Girl
Karen and Gary. :D
With Nizz!
Debbie with friend
Kam, Hadi and Juliana!
Doc PS and supporters
Comes with poster too!
With Chris - third OD race
The race started about 15minutes late perhaps due to the arrival of the VIP that held up the gun-off. The Swim course has changed slightly with the starting and ending about 50meters apart. Last year, the swim course was missing the first marker resulting in slightly shorter swim distance. Looks like this year will be a full 1.5km. This year, I brought my camera to the start line and into the water. I was hoping to be able to snap some photos midway of the swim league but decided not too as I was stuck in the middle pocket with many hands and legs flying – and swimmers going diagonal in front of me – clearing forgetting to sight as they swim.
Wave 2! Awesome!
40mins later...
The water this year was a bit choppier perhaps due to the rain the previous day and the drizzle in the early morning. This is what a good race is made off. You never swam in an open sea until you know how it is like to be floating up and down in the swell. Nice.
I was in the water a little longer than expected – a total of 40minutes and that was easily 15minutes more than my best 25minutes effort for 1.5km open sea swim. With the swell and the numbers of people in the sea, I say it was a good swim for me – more so the last I did any swim was last year’s PDIT.
Out of water, I looked back and saw many other friends coming out and by the side cheering us on! Can’t beat these feeling of being like “a star”. It was a stroll to transition T1 and well, more photos taking.
Coach Zabil!
Looking Good Tesa1

Looks who behind me!

Tony and Siok Bee!
Ezan was out of the water within 40minutes of her race start – which was like my speed in the water. Fantastic. She pushed off earlier and I was clowning with fellow Ironman Edwin, Omar and Shiraz, and of course the famous Razlan. Fun. Fun. Fun! T1 time was about 17minutes.
Shine attempting triathlon!
With Razlan
With Senn!
PS Out of water!
Luvis out of water!
Patrick Strolling in.

Nizz out of T1!

Chin Ann on Relay!
Michelle on Relay!
Yim out for T1.
Ironman Uncle Yee!
Nik oout of water!
Su Mei!
I wasn't the only one clowning around
Omar and Razlan asking if Shiraz putting on make up

The first 20km was done in easy 40mins and I finally caught up with Ezan at the U-turn. It was then hammering down all the way to T2. With her right behind me, I hammered on the pedal at least 35km/h and at one stretch, a 40km/h for a whole 5km and held a top speed of 52km/h on the aero position over slight elevation loss – that is as fast as me coming down from Genting Peras! Bike done in 1:20 with average of 30km/h. Hardly hero material, but that was going from 23km/h average in the first 20km to average of 30km/h within the same distance.
Always fun with them around.
Caught up with Uncle Yee
Found Ezan after Uturn
Getting into Aero position soon
Fresh from the 40km bike ride, it was T2 in 3:30 with the biggest supporters cheering me on. Nadia wanted to “run with papa”. Soon girl, you will, and you will run faster than your old man.
The Lims
Running past one of the hotel near the army camp
Then onto the "trail" least shady!
AFAT boys.
U-Turn at KM4???So early?

Ada nampak Shiraz? 
And here is the soft sand..
Chris - Like a Winner
Return leg's trail
With Nik
Madhu the Swimmer!
Just like last year, Uncle Chan decided to add a little variety to the run – his idea of “trail beach run” in a triathlon race. A difference with last year was that this year, the trail came in later in the run. At the U-turn (KM4), I knew that the run will be under distance by about 1km. The run then happens mostly on the beach side. It was a perfect catch up with some friends, I would say.
Running strong into the finishing line. I was least surprised of this due to the running mileages that I had been putting in. Clearly, run is basic of all sporting fitness. I’ve managed to improve much due to putting time and effort into this during training. The 9km run was wrapped up in less than an hour.
Being beaten by Ryan and Nadia on the final run
Nearing the finishing, the kids and wifey caught up with me and I ran with both Ryan and Nadia to finish. One day, they will both compete, and enjoy this as much as I did.
So there it was, the whole PDIT 2012 wrapped up in my usual race report banter. With total time of about 3:30 with a total transition time of about 20minutes. Not a bad effort considering the amount of fun I had!
ps- more photos to be uploaded once i have full internet access and in my Facebook!

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