Sunday, June 5, 2011

East End Kids of Steel

On June 4th, Maria and Stefan participated to the East End Kids of Steel triathlon. They were very excited about it as it was their first triathlon this year. The night before we practiced the transition with them until we made sure that they knew exactly what they have to do the next day. Stefan is 5 1/2 years and Maria is 7 years old and they both were now in the same age group, 6-7 years. That's because Stefan is going to be 6 in November and they consider the age as of December 31st and not as on the race day.

Maria is very competitive and she was quite nervous before the race. Stefan, on the other hand, doesn't care that much about his finish time. He's the one who enjoys the race, smiling and waiving at the spectators.

Just before the race we were announced that the swimming is cancelled due to some problems with the pool. My kids are pretty good at cycling and running, but they are not good at swimming, just like their parents. So, this was actually a good news for them, especially for Maria who was kinda scared of the swim.

Getting ready for the race

They had wave starts, with the youngest kids starting first. Stefan was the first one to go. He kind of missed the start, probably because he did not pay much attention, so he was almost the last kid to start running. 

But then, to our surprise, he picked up the pace and passed quite a few kids as the race progressed. 

On the bike he passed some more kids, even though he learned how to ride his bike without the training wheels just a month before.

Usually he is a BOP (bottom of the pack) finisher but this time he tried harder than usual and finished in middle of the pack, 19 out of 32 kids, even though he was probably one of the youngest kids in his wave.

Maria, is exactly the opposite. She is really ambitious and tries very hard to finish as fast as she can. Because of this, she's usually quite nervous before every race. 

She had a good start and by the time she got to the transition, she was the first in her wave.

Once she got into the transition, the problems begun. Because she was so nervous, she had major issues buckling up her helmet. I think that she spent about 3 minutes with that helmet. At some point I thought that she's going to start crying, as more and more kids were passing her. 

Finally, she managed to put on her helmet and start the bike leg. 

She is very good at cycling and I knew that she'll probably make up for the lost time in transition. She started in force, passing everyone in her sight.

After the first turnaround she was already in the front. 

And after the second turnaround she was way up front.

She finished strong, being the first in her age group. She beat all the boys in her wave, too, but there were faster boys in the other waves so in the end she finished 5th overall.

It seems that both, Maria and Stefan, genuinely enjoy triathlon more and more. They keep asking us when is their next race. I am sure that in a few years they will probably kick my ass in a Sprint triathlon and I look forward to it :-).