race report

Race Report: Boyd Lake Bash -- Sprint Triathlon


If you’re not a professional, getting paid a significant amount of money to do your sport, you need to generally chill out — enjoy yourself. That’s what I felt like telling everyone at the start of this race. Lance Panigutti, godfather of Withoutlimits, wasn’t at this race because he was kicking off the Cyclocross season in Boulder. And in his absence, people got huffy. Lance has a way of calming the crowds. He’s got a sense of humor that sort of puts people in their place. He reminds them that they got up early to have fun. But also, he gives very clear directions. He keeps his cool under pressure and quickly fixes things that go wrong. Like I said, Lance wasn’t at this event.

So, the swim was twice as long as it was supposed to be (1,500 yards instead of 800), in fairly choppy water. Boaters were clearly awake and soaking up one of the last summer weekends of the year. The bike was a little chaotic, a little short, with a lot of turn arounds, and endless jarring seams in the road. And the run was more like 3.5 miles instead of a 5K. All said, the water temperature was amazing (probably 74-degrees) with no need for a wetsuit. The bike course was fun and different (aka not a loop around Boulder Rez). And the run was a nice mixture of gravel and pavement, over bridges and next to the lake. Who can really complain?!


The finish featured kombucha and other recovery beverages, along with a pancake breakfast and fruit. Runner’s Roost Fort Collins was on hand, selling discounted shoes and sunglasses. There was a beer garden, people giving massage, and on-the-spot printable results. I did miss having the traditional Withoutlimits slip-and-slide finish, but it probably would have been a lot with so many races going on.


Some people were put off that transition didn’t reopen until 10:30am (well after most had finished their race), but it gave the chance to relax, refuel, and enjoy the morning. My husband and I biked the 5 miles to and from the lake, and would certainly do this one again as it’s practically in our backyard. Keep your cool, Loveland — it’s just a race.

Carter Lake Crossing ("Race" Report)


Point-to-point swims are such a treat. No turns, easier sighting: just keep the shore on one side and the sun on the other. This was my longest open water swim to date. I’ve done a few 2.3-mile swims, but let me tell you, 3 miles is a lot. And, like all things, there is a distinct culture around long-swim events. Young and old, Northern Colorado has a lot of swimmers who can haul-ass!

The swim was briefly postponed because the bus to shuttle participants from their cars to the other end of the lake, broke down. Instead of launching at 7am, it was more like 7:25am. It was a deep-water start, which I prefer. The last thing that Douglas said before the gun went off was, “I’m sure I’ll lose you so I’ll see you at the finish.” It can get a little scary (for me) to be in the middle of a large body of water “alone,” so I decided to do everything I could to stay on his feet. Generally, he’s a stronger, faster swimmer than me, but I was wearing a wetsuit and he was not. I kept up.


The water was remarkably clear, and Douglas kept a good, steady pace. I actually couldn’t believe how calm Carter was — either people slept in, or the boats kept their distance. Only a few moments of bobbing. By the time we passed the 2nd buoy, I had figured each was placed around 500 yards apart.

Because the bus broke down, we were the last group to reach the start, and thus missed all of the instructions. So, they probably covered this, but when we reached the end of the lake, I wasn’t sure if we were supposed to circle the last buoy or go straight in. Douglas opted to go straight in, and I circled the final buoy. I think he was right and I was wrong. In any event, we still finished within about 30 seconds of each other, and he had no idea that I was on his feet for the entire swim.

We kept a pace of just under 2:00/100, which isn’t fast, but we weren’t out to prove anything. Great day, great conditions, great swim. The post-swim snacks were less than impressive — a bowl of Oreos and some Nuun hydration. We were also surprised that the t-shirts weren’t included in the price of the event. Still, an all-around fun morning.