Try the Illini 2023

I did a half ironman training session on Saturday, to warm up for the TTI sprint triathlon on Sunday. I rode the superbike from home to transition, checked in, got marked, and then waited in the endless swim line: Urbana had not approved the bike course, which was reduced to a <1.5 mile stretch between Florida and Windsor! So TTI left long swaths of time to the swim start to make sure there would not be too many cyclists on the course at any given time.

I swam slowly in 07:44; I could tell my shoulder was still slightly bothering me (torn rotator in Switzerland), but getting better. The bike course was full of hybrids blocking the road between the ever-present turnarounds every 1.3 miles. I rode carefully as I can’t afford an accident. The run was fairly fast for me, just over 22 minutes for the 5k. I should have run 2 seconds faster for the age group win, but the guy ahead of me is almost 5 years younger, and I did a 56/13 mile bike run the day before, so no complaint. Suzanne (1st female overall) and Nick beat me by several minutes – no surprise at their tender age in the early 40s and 50s.

I had some bananas at the finish, packed up, and rode back home. I am glad the race provided motivation for me to reassemble the superbike, which had been lying on the floor in pieces since Switzerland’s DECA in August ’22. Still need to replace the chain and cassette though.