Oktoberfest 2018: A Blast of a Season Closer

by Rich Soares

The Oktoberfest Triathlon has earned a reputation of being the “don’t miss the fun” race of the season.

 

Officially the last local triathlon race of the season, more than 700 athletes come from around the country to say goodbye to the summer triathlon race season by letting their fun flag fly! Oktoberfest featured sprint, relay team and collegiate division races including draft legal and non-draft races from twelve Universities.

 

Sunday’s race began with the draft legal men’s and women’s races. The men’s division had ten athletes representing five universities, including Colorado Mesa, CU Boulder, Utah, Wyoming and Colorado State. The women’s NCAA division had 49 athletes representing twelve universities, including Arizona State, Black Hills State, Colorado Mesa, Colorado State, Daemen College, Northern Vermont University, United States Air Force Academy, University of California Berkeley, CU Boulder, South Dakota, Utah and Wagner College. The non-draft collegiate competition followed with 98 athletes (50 women and 48 men) representing Colorado School of Mines, CSU, CU Boulder, Wyoming, and USAFA. Sprint triathlon and team relay waves followed the collegiate start with 415 athletes in the triathlon and 30 relay teams.

Clear skies and mild temperatures made for perfect conditions at Union Reservoir in Longmont. The course started with a 750-meter square left-hand swim course around four neon yellow buoys. The water was calm and temperatures were in the low-mid 70’s making it reasonably comfortable for those who did not care to swim in wetsuits. The 13-mile bike course led riders out of the reservoir north on County Rd 1, east on Route 66, south on County Road 7 and back east on 119. All intersections were well controlled and large sections of the course were coned off in high traffic areas to provide the riders separation from automobiles. The run course led athletes through the race village past the vendor and club tents, spurring energy and excitement for spectators and athletes alike. Runners donned costumes adding to the “let your fun flag fly” vibe. Costumed or not, the runners headed on to the gravel out-and-back course with an energetic aid station located a mile from the race village. The finish line was lined
with spectator cheering and partying to the beat of race music.

After the race, athletes enjoyed good music and great food catered by Wahoos. The post-race party was capped off with the awards ceremony recognizing the serious competition of more than 700 athletes.

The collegiate competitions posted fast times. Nick Dorsett took out the men’s draft legal race with a time of 00:58:10, while Hannah Henry from ASU bested the rest of the NCAA women with a time of 1:00:04. In the non-draft collegiate race Jack Toland from CU Boulder won the men’s competition with a 00:56:28 and Kelly Grier of USAFA won the women’s with 1:09:58. In the age grouper sprint race 49 year old Kevin Konczak from Boulder won the overall with at time of 59 minutes even and 29 year old Caitlan Standifer of Boulder was the overall winner for women with a 1:05:39.

Complete results here

Thanks to Lance Panigutti, the entire Without Limits Productions crew and volunteers for putting on a fantastic 2018 season. I’m already looking forward to 2019!

Missing Terry Laughlin of Total Immersion Swimming

The swimming and triathlon communities grieve the passing of Terry Laughlin, founder of Total Immersion Swimming.

As reported in Slowtwitch:

Terry Laughlin, the innovative swim technique pioneer whose Total Immersion system taught swimmers of all abilities and ages to swim in a slipperier, more fishlike manner, died Friday of complications related to his two-year fight with metastatic prostate cancer.

In a release on behalf from Laughlin’s wife Alice and daughters Fiona, Carrie and Betsy, the family wrote: “After living with metastatic prostate cancer for two years (about which he blogged widely), Terry passed away on Friday, October 20th, 2017, of complications related to his condition.

303’s own Rich Soares had interviewed Terry a couple of times on his Mile High Endurance Podcast over the last year and has this to say about Terry:

“Terry Laughlin liked to be referred to as the Chief Optimist Officer at Total Immersion. He loved to share his passion for swimming and he generously shared his passion with the Mile High Endurance audience on a number of occasions. Terry described swimming like some people describe an Italian sports car or fine art, or how a foodie describes their favorite dessert.”

In Episodes 62, 71, and 82 Terry took the audience through the Total Immersion methodology, the importance of bi-lateral breathing for open water swimming, and a convincing explanation of why it is possible to take your swim to a new level by finding your ideal stroke rate.

Enjoy the interviews and the legacy our dear friend Terry leaves with us. Happy swimming Terry!

Ben Hoffman on Kona – “It’s a brutal savage race where anything can happen”

By Rich Soares

Ben Hoffman on Kona – “It’s a brutal savage race where anything can happen”

303Triathlon caught up with Colorado native and professional triathlete Ben Hoffman. Bound for IRONMAN World Championship in Kona, Ben talked to us about his training, Kona specific preparations, recent race performances, XTerra World Championships and more.

Three weeks from the Kona contest, Ben is in the middle of his biggest week (40+ hours) of training. He is a self-proclaimed volume responder and talked about some of his key workouts. This week’s training includes double-swims, bricks that include

160 miles on the bike followed by a 45-minute run, and a two hour run at 6 minute/mile pace. His heat adaptation training includes living and training in Tucson where he can train regularly over 100 degrees. His coach has prescribed specific sauna sessions – the exact frequency, duration and temperatures not revealed. Ben prefers to arrive in Kona one week prior to the race. “I’m better when I don’t get to Kona early. I like to finish my training in my own environment. The energy at Kona is amazing, but it starts to wear you down.”

We talked about how previous performances have prepared him for this year’s championship showdown. In 2014, Ben’s 2nd place finish in Kona was pivotal to changing his paradigm of what was possible. “In Kona, that component of self-belief is massive. [2014] confirmed the belief and raised it to a new level…why not win? You have to trust yourself and know that you can contend with the best guys in the world.” Earlier this year, Ben came in 3rd place at Ironman Boulder 70.3 behind Tim Don and Matt Charbot. Just this past month he came in 2nd in a sprint finish at 70.3 Santa Cruz against Braden Curry of New Zealand. Ben raced both Boulder and Santa Cruz 70.3 without much of a taper. Ben plans to use these races in his preparation strategy, and get the proper rest before the big contest on October 15th. “I’ll try to represent Colorado and the USA and make everyone proud. Whatever is in there, I’ll try to get it out on the day.”

Mile High Endurance Podcast: Run Your Fat Off

Another great book from Dr. Jason Karp. Hear key insights on how to get the fat off and keep it off with the book “Run Your Fat Off”. We also talk about the definition of metabolic efficiency, injury prevention and more. Hosts Rich Soares and Khem Suthiwan. Listen to the podcast.