Sunday, August 30, 2009

VICTORIA UPDATE

Connor and I (Ian) have spent the last five days training in Victoria in preparation for the World Championships in Gold Coast, Australia. We have another four days of work before our flight across the world.

Victoria has been nice to us. Great weather, plenty of training partners, and amazing accommodations. We are staying with the Sharpe family, Matt being the third member of the Junior Men's team. The Sharpes live about a quarter mile from the pool, and are only minutes from seemingly endless trails.
I got to test out the Elk Lake 10k loop for the first time this morning. After a few minutes with the group I decided to test the waters by myself out in front. Kyle and D.J. came with me and kept me grounded, seeing as it was a base run. I think I'm getting better at the idea of recovery workouts. Connor and I seem to have developed a routine of letting each other know when one of us takes things out at an unassigned pace. I disagreed with him this morning, but as you can see below, we often have different styles.




Saturday, August 29, 2009

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

CAN GAMES RELAY




Better late than never....


Day 8 brought our second and final competition of the Canada Games: the Team Relay. Provinces competed in teams of three, with each athlete completing a 300m swim, 6.67k bike and 2k run, before handing off to their next team mate. Both races were held under good conditions: non-wetsuit swim, fairly calm water, moderate winds, warm temps.

In the Women's relay started at 10AM. Dorelle was our lead athlete, followed by Domi Jamnicky, and anchored by Joanna Brown. In the first leg, Dorelle had a strong swim, and got onto the bike with BC, with a ~0:10" gap on MB and AB. The bike was a bit tactical, with BC waiting for MB, before attacking and putting a slight gap on us before T2. Both teams wanted at least 0:30" on us heading into the 3rd leg, so we were effectively racing against team tactics on the first leg. On to the run, MB and BC put a bit more time on us into the first hand off. Team MB had a bad exchange and lost a few seconds, effectively separating all athletes. Domi started our second leg in 3rd place, and raced great throughout, although the top 3 didn't change. Joanna put in a strong swim and bike, but lost a little time to MB's Rachel Edwards (who had a great bike split), before blasting the run with the best split (6:47) of the day. We had measured the 2k the day before the race to confirm it was accurate (it was), and I timed Joanna's relay run split with a stopwatch, from the mat at the exit of T2 to the finish line. The time on my watch was 6:22. I'm not sure why the official time is 0:25" slower, but I'm pretty sure I know how to use a stopwatch. All three girls posted relays times in the top 10 of the race. Great racing all around, and a Canada Games Bronze Medal for the team.

Womens relay results here.

The Mens relay started at 12 noon. Connor Hammond was our lead athlete, followed by Ian Donald, with Tristan Woodfine as anchor. Our plan for the guys was to give BC a run for their money by giving our 2nd and 3rd guys a 10-20 sec advantage into each swim. The BC team was strong across the board, but especially in the water, so a small advantage for Ontario heading into each swim leg would put us into T1 with the BC athlete, and in a good position to work together on the bike and push the run. Connor executed perfectly, overcoming some early contact in the swim to get into the front pack, and building the run to give us ~0:20" over BC. Ian swam very well, exiting the swim with BC's Cole Stewart as planned, and moving smoothly through T1, on to the bike. Unfortunately, Cole (a strong rider) opened up a small gap and put his head down to maximize the advantage, with Ian chasing hard to limit the gap. On to the run, Cole buried himself with a great run. Ian was able to claw back time, but BC's Jeff Phillips still started the 3rd leg with a good ~0:15" lead. With Jeff hammering off the front, Tristan was given the big task of chasing Jeff, and/or holding on to 2nd. Nova Scotia was having an excellent race, and their 3rd athlete got out of the water with Tristan. Things were looking up for us, as Tristan now had someone to work with in pursuit of BC. Unfortunately, the NS athlete dropped his chain right out of T1, which resulted in a 0:60"+ time loss before it was fixed. The MB moved up to 3rd out of T1, with Tristan riding solo in pursuit of BC further up the road. Phillips was able to open up a bit more time on the bike, and run home for the win, followed by Tristan and MB for 3rd. Without that mechanical, Nova Scotia was looking at a likely bronze medal, or at least a very exciting fight with MB for 3rd....but that's racing. All ON boys were in the top 12 of the relay times, and claimed a Canada Games Silver medal for their efforts.

Mens relay results here.

The relay event was well run, and an exciting event for athletes, spectators and coaches. It would be great to see a relay event at all Junior Series races next year (race Saturday, relay Sunday) - that would double the draft-legal race experience for our junior athletes for the same travel budget, and the athletes would love the new challenge.

A big thanks to OAT for the incredible support over the last 3+ years. Thanks also to our Manager, Karen Bonham, and Mission Staffperson Stephanie Johnston, who both provided excellent support throughout the games. Finally, congratulations to our athletes. They raced hard in both events and contributed to Ontario's medal haul (2 silver, 1 bronze), but most importantly they represented their sport and their province very well.

Congrats to all competitors, coaches and officials for being part of Triathlon's debut at the Canada Summer Games, and putting on a great show.




Monday, August 24, 2009

FULL TIME TRIATHLON COACH

I still owe the faithful PTC readers a Canada Games wrap-up post, and it's coming soon. Ontario was very well represented by a great team, and we were able to bring home three medals (silver in the mens triathlon, silver in the mens relay, bronze in the womens relay). Team manager Karen Bonham and I were very impressed with the way the athletes prepared for and executed their races.

More details will have to wait however, as I just received this notice, and I wanted to post it asap. Job postings for triathlon coaches don't come along too often, and this looks like a good one. Sheila O'Kelly is the Managing Director of ITU World Cups, and was a driving force behind the ITU Edmonton World Cup for many years. The same people behind the Edmonton race are now backing the creation of the Edmonton Triathlon Academy, and looking for a full-time coach. This could be a great development for Alberta, and for triathlon in Canada.

The job was posted in Triathlon Canada notices a few days ago.

You can read a bit more about the vision for the program here. Application deadline is Monday August 31st, 2009. Not much time.


Friday, August 21, 2009

RELAY

iPhone update:

WOMEN
1. BC
2. MB
3. ON

MEN
1. BC
2. ON
3. MB

more later.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

DAY 5: SPRINT TRI


A bit late with this post, but here we go....

Tuesday we raced the first of two events, a draft-legal sprint triathlon. We had hot weather (30C+), moderate to strong winds, and some choppy water before the women's race (10am) with calmer water for the men's race (12pm). Water temp was 24C, well above the wetsuit cut-off.

In the women's race, all three Ontario women had strong swims, with Dorelle Hinton firmly in the lead pack, and Domi Jamnicky in the back of the lead pack. Joanna Brown swam very well to be in the chase pack, only 0:50" down on the leaders. Unfortunately, Domi lost her chip in the swim, and was stopped on the run to T1 by someone from the event timing company, who insisted she replace her chip. She lost time in the exchange, and ended up missing the front pack; frustrating for an athlete who made the front pack at Nationals. We protested after the race, but the competition jury decided not to adjust Domi's time. The front pack consisted of Dorelle, all three BC athletes, and Manitoba athletes Sarah-Anne Brault & Stevie Moore. They rode hard, while Domi fell to the chase pack which contained Joanna. Team tactics came into play as the Manitoba athlete in the chase pack worked to slow the pack down and open the gap between Joanna and the lead pack. To her credit, Joanna realized what was happening, and worked to limit the damage as much as possible. The BC team also employed a team strategy, keeping their three girls together through the bike. Out of T1, the difference between packs was ~0:50", and by T2 it was ~2:30; the chase pack lost ~:35" per lap. On to the run, the BC girls and Sarah-Anne Brault moved to the front. Dorelle started conservatively, and built through the run, in order to manage the heat. Alison Hooper (BC) pulled away in a decisive move on the 3rd lap to take the win over Sarah-Anne. Dorelle took back ~0:20" on Kyla Coates and Christine Rideour on the last lap of the run, finished 1 second behind 4th. Joanna lit up the run course with the fastest run time, coming home for 6th, and Domi stayed focused on her race for a strong 11th place finish.

In the men's race, Connor was comfortably in the front pack through the swim and into T1. Ian was on the end of the chase pack out of the swim, but he lost a few seconds in transition and missed the bike pack. A mechanical issue on the bike meant some further challenges for Ian, but he stayed focussed and raced hard. Tristan came out with a few athletes, and two of them quickly got organized for the ride. Through the bike, the biggest pack was the front pack of 6 (and later 5), containing the BC Team, Joel Howlett (who had a great race), Connor and Brad Piggot (NS). With the small field (29 men) and some good winds, the chasing riders were reduced to packs of 2-4, with several riding on their own, and the lead pack making time on the rest of the field. Phillips (BC) opened up a gap into T2, and pushed the run to stay clear through to the finish line. Connor ran with the pack for most of the first lap, before finding his rhythm at the half way mark, and coming home for 2nd ahead of Cole Stewart (BC) in 3rd. Ian and Tristan had their work cut out for them coming into T2, and both guys attacked the run right away, moving up to 12th and 15th, respectively, with the two fastest runs of the day. The run was likely short - we'll try to get an accurate measure before we leave (edit: I measured it this morning at 4.6k with a Garmin).

In addition to the podium, teams also score 'flag points' for the overall Canada Games title, awarded to the province with the most flag points at the end of the games. The top two athletes in each race scored points towards a team ranking. BC was the first team in both races. In the women's race, Manitoba was second, with Ontario third. In the men's race, Ontario was second, with Manitoba third.

At the end of the day, the BC team took 4 of the 6 medals - a great performance for a great team. We've had some fantastic battles against the BC men this year, and we've been chasing the BC girls (with everyone else) all season long. Team tactics were employed in both races to great effect. Although we didn't employ any team tactics for the races, it was a great experience for our athletes to compete in tactical races, and great preparation for future events.

The entire Ontario team raced very hard, and should be very proud of their efforts. Congrats to Connor on digging deep to earn a place on the podium and bring home Ontario's third medal of the Canada Summer Games.

Everyone is looking forward to an exciting relay event tomorrow.

A few links:

Team Ontario Newsletter with a short race summary.

Official Canada Games results.

Chip Timing results.

Globe and Mail article on Team BC performance and tactics.

Ottawa Citizen article about Ian, Tristan and Jo.

Times Colonist article on BC win.

Video report on race.



Tuesday, August 18, 2009

RACE DAY #1


Race Day. Women at 10AM, Men at 12PM. We'll try to update with results.

In the meantime, check out the Team Ontario website. You'll find daily Newsletters, and a great Photo Gallery.

You can also check out the Canada Games website for start lists and bios for the men and women.




Monday, August 17, 2009

Sunday, August 16, 2009

CAN GAMES DAY 1 & 2

DAY 1:
Most of us started out early (2am in Ottawa, 5am in Guelph) to drive to Toronto for the Team Ontario charter flight. We flew directly into Slemon Park (an air base which closed in '92), which serves as the athlete's village and venue for wrestling. After an info session, and screening for H1N1, we settled in, and did a short swim/bike on the course.

DAY 2:
Most of day 2 was dedicated to the Opening Ceremonies. We were up early for a swim in the bay (which was half swim, half walk) before the Team Ontario Pep Rally. After that, it was on to the buses to Summerside (7k away) for staging, pin trading and the opening ceremonies. Prime Minister Stephen Harper and Governor General Michaelle Jean were on hand to open the Games shake the hand of every athlete (or fist bump in Connor's case - the PM wasn't even phased). Two Hours Traffic closed the show - DS would have been impressed - too bad it was only one song. After the Opening Ceremonies, we headed out for a short jog, followed by an ice bath.

Team Manager Karen Bonham and Mission Staff-person Stephanie Johnston are doing a great job looking after the team. The volunteers here have been incredible.

We race on Tuesday (sprint) and Friday (relay). It's been hot here in Summerside, and it looks like we'll get similar weather for the rest of the week. Our first hot races of the year - should be good.


Photo Album here. We'll keep updating through the week.



Ian arrives



Gettin' peppy.



The Team



Domi, before boarding the buses for the Opening Ceremonies



An ice bath to end the day.



Tuesday, August 11, 2009

FINAL JUNIOR SERIES RANKINGS

I must have missed the notice on this one. Final 2009 Junior Series are posted.

Here are the top five:

MEN
1. Connor Hammond, ON
2. Marc-Antoine Christin, QC
3. Matt Sharpe, BC
4. Tristan Woodfine, ON
5. Cole Stewart, BC

WOMEN
1. Kyla Coates, BC
2. Alison Hooper, BC
3. Christine Ridenour, BC
4. Joanna Brown, ON
5. Alexandra Coates, BC

Congrats to Connor and Kyla for wining the series, and to Team BC for impressive consistency (6 of the top 10 athletes). Lots of great racing in the series this year from many athletes, and the best depth I can remember. Best of luck to those racing Can Games next week. Looking forward to a great 2010 Junior Series.



Monday, August 10, 2009

THE FORGE


Great ideas are everywhere, all you have to do is steal borrow them (with appropriate credit to the source). One of the big ideas around here has to do with my/our long term plans for the program. We're very fortunate to have the example of a much more mature program in the form of Guelph Running, under head coach Dave Scott-Thomas, to use as a model. See below for excerpts from a recent Guelph Mercury article about the program, borrowed from Reid Coolsaet's blog.


Efforts of many make champions
August 4, 2009
John Marsden
www.guelphmercury.com


Why Guelph? It is not the facilities. The university has a dirt track, built before Canada adopted the metric system. The St. James track is more holes than patches these days.

Our resource is human, a group of athletes that train together. This is the factory that produces international-level runners.

In a workout, they push themselves through a series of runs, trying to increase their speed as they get more and more tired. The strongest runners lead, the others try to maintain contact. They support, help and push each other. It is this depth of talent working together that produces superior athletes.

The source of talent is social. Over the years, something happens during those intense workouts; something is transmitted, runner to runner, that transforms them into world-class athletes.

You can see them now, on the roads and trails. They are young and lean, running faster than you or I can imagine. This is the place in which champions are forged.

Full article.



MONDAY MORNING

TL, baby kate, CT (and enough baby gear to start a home daycare)



Some odds & ends from the weekend:

A few of the athletes raced the Niagara sprint on Sunday. The race was close to home for me, so I packed baby Kate into the car and headed to Grimsby for my first opportunity to see TL and AD race this year. Solid race organization (as usual), and good to catch up with Mitch & Janet Fraser and a whole bunch of great people I've met in the sport over the last 15+ years - you guys all look happy, fit and fast. Congrats to Karsten Madsen for the overall win - he took a risk with a hard bike effort and brought it home in the heat. Alexander Hinton finished off his season with 3rd place overall, and fastest run split. Adriano had a solid effort across the board, for 5th overall. Tom Lokody was first out of the water, but had a hard fall in the first corner. He's a bit banged up, but we're in better shape than last year at this time when his arm was in a cast. Juniors Johnny Rasmussen (6th overall), and Taylor Reid (8th overall) were comfortably in the top 10, for a total of four junior males in the top 8 overall. Love it. In the Junior women's race, Pauline Skowron took first, with Sarah Rasmussen 2nd.

Karsten, Taylor and Pauline train and race with C3. John and Sarah Rasmussen train and race with Dan McKerral.

Meanwhile in Windsor, there was some strong racing in the 40+ degree heat. California's Chris Foster won the mens' race, and Tereza Macel dominated the women's race. PTC'er Angela Quick had a good race for 4th. James caught a bug before the race - he gave the swim and bike a go, but retired to fight another day. And Tony Smucler raced - maybe the beginnings of a return to form for a top junior from a few years ago?

Finally, we're in the home stretch before the 2009 Canada Summer Games (Summerside, PEI), and the 2009 Canadian U23/Elite National Championships (Kelown, BC). Team Ontario has released their media guide with sport info and athlete profiles for each sport. I haven't been through the whole thing yet, but Ian Donald's picture (page 76) must be one of the top contenders for the "serial killer mugshot" award. But he's really a nice guy. Honest.



Saturday, August 8, 2009

WEARING THREE HATS

WEARING THREE HATS SUITS HER JUST FINE
Kingston Whig Standard
August 8, 2009
www.thewhig.com




This is the first story in a series profiling Kingston athletes competing in the Canada Summer Games, Aug. 15-29 in Prince Edward Island.

Dorelle Hinton seems to enjoy multi-tasking.

The Kingston Collegiate graduate, who grew up swimming for the Kingston Blue Marlins and competing in track and field and cross-country at high school, has developed a serious love for triathlon.

"Every day of training is different and it brings new challenges," Hinton, 20, said. "Lots of people ask, 'How can you train for all three sports, the swimming, biking and running?'

"But I have a blast doing every single (discipline). It's never monotonous for me. I enjoy every single moment of racing."

The decision to focus on triathlon has paid off for Hinton, who has been training at the Ontario Provincial Triathlon Centre in Guelph while attending school at the University of Guelph the past two years.

A first-time winner on the short course at the K-Town Tri last weekend, Hinton's next stop is Prince Edward Island, where she will represent Ontario at the Canada Summer Games.

Full article here.



Thursday, August 6, 2009

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

PICTORIAL

Post-workout hot tub (on a rare occasion when it's not closed)

Ang swimming so hard her arms fell off

Ryan takes on a rainy K-Town long course

Tyler looking ready to roll for the Badenoch Brick


Ian 3rd overall at K-Town in epic rain

Dorelle sets a new K-town short course record.


(I'm speechless)


Good times.


Tuesday, August 4, 2009

CATCH-UP

Alexander Hinton crosses the line 2nd overall at K-Town sprint.


Busy times as we get closer to the key races. A quick post to review some recent notices on the OAT Website, highlight some race results, and look forward to upcoming events:


OAT is looking for a coach to work as Training Day Co-ordinator for the 2009-2010 Training Days at UofG. Deadline: Monday August 10, 2009.

Anyone interested in running for the OAT Board of Directors, your deadline is Tuesday August 25, 2009.

Qualifying for the 2010 Ontario Games begins this month.

Congrats to Dorelle Hinton for winning the OAT 2009 Academic Scholarship!

The team for the Canada Summer Games is now official. The team will travel to Summerside, PEI, to compete in a draft-legal sprint triathlon on Tuesday August 18th, and a triathlon relay event on Friday August 21st. You can follow the exploits of the team on the Team Ontario website, and I'll try to keep the blog updated. It also looks like there will be a daily newsletter available during the games.

The CSG athletes are in their final prep, with some tune-up races prior to the games. Fresh off of strong 5000m performances, Tristan Woodfine was first overall at the Deep River Tri, and Joanna Brown was first female (and 3rd overall) at the National Capital Sprint. There were several good performances from the juniors at the Nat'l Capital Race, including Nick Gregory (9th overall), Lindsay Anderson (10th overall) and Jade Gregory (16th overall).

In Kingston, Alexander Hinton, Ian Donald and Dorelle Hinton posted strong races at the K-Town sprint, finishing 2nd, 3rd and 4th overall behind race winner Andrew Courchene. Dorelle set a new course record, and got a little media exposure from the Whig Standard. Great story about Mike Neill, too.

Connor Hammond joins James Loaring and Angela Quick this Sunday at the Windsor Tri, with several other PTC'ers tackling the escarpment climb at TriSport's Niagara Sprint.

On the international scene, the National Team has been racing well in the ITU World Championship Series. Look for most of them to be on the start line at Nationals in Kelowna.

Finally, I've been meaning to congratulate first year junior Devon Labuik for finishing first overall at the Gravenhurst Sprint, on July 18th. Congrats Devon!


Apologies for those I've missed. All the best in your training and racing.