Celebrating 5 years of Ironman participation

Race Report: Cranberry Trifest


Sunday, August 30th – Cranberry Trifest Olympic Race

4:30 am – My alarm went off and I looked out the window – dark and dry.  The race would be on.  As predicted, Tropical Storm Danny had passed by, the rain and wind were gone (the shorter Sprint distance was cancelled the day before due to the storm).  I needed to get up.  I packed my bag the night before, put out my race outfit, told my parents and my colleague where to meet me, made my friend go to the early bird special dinner, and went to bed around 9:30.  No excuses.  Time to get up and race, right?  According to my growling stomach, yes!

5:15 am – My oh-so-styling silver PT Cruiser rental was packed.  Bike, bike shoes, running shoes, goggles, wetsuit, body glide, nutrition…I was pretty sure I had it all.  I hit the road for Lakeville, MA and the Ted Williams Camp.

6:00 am – This is probably the earliest I have ever arrived to a race, but I figured I knew nothing about the area and had to pick up my race packet, so might as well have time.  Indeed, I did.  I was all settled in transition and hanging out with my Wheelworks teammates well before 7.  The race is the Northeast USAT Regional Club Championship race.  All the participating teams had their bikes racked together in the transition area.  It was a good way to start the morning!  Oh, and with all the extra time on my hands, I realized I forgot BOTH my race belts.  Some other guy offered me his extra, but then he couldn’t find it.  So, I bought one from the Quad Multisport booth.  Bright green – figured my race outfit could use a little flare.

8:30 am – After lots of socializing, a few bathroom breaks, it was finally time for my swim wave (35 and under female) to start.  The first wave started at 7 am, so I had been waiting a while.  At least my teammates Jen, Lindsey, and Alyson were all in the same wave!  The swim start was crowded!  It was the first time I could not break out of a pack of women and I spent the first few hundred yards swimming over people.  Good Ironman race prep!

The rest of the race

The bike ride was flat and fast!  I tried to remember to pace myself and take it easy – this race was supposed to be training for IM Moo.  But, I got stuck in this pack of women during the last 5 miles and just had to break away.  I ate one gu packet (thanks Mona for the refill on vanilla gu!) and a few shot blocks.  It was just right!

I felt great on the run!  Woo-hoo!  My pacing felt perfect for Madison.  I definitely was just getting into the groove around mile 5.  I walked through the water stations to practice for IM Moo.  But, I had to go all out to the finish line as I was neck and neck with this other woman.

Best parts of the run: Seeing my parents drive by around mile 1.  I recognized them a little too late, and started yelling, “Mom! Hey Mom!” as they drove by.  But, I guess they saw me waving – or noticed all the other racers looking at me, because they stopped and honked the horn.  The other great part was turning off the road into the park and seeing my teammate Joe Bator.  He had a cowbell.  I yelled, “I need more cowbell!”  ha ha…I got a few other spectators to laugh too!

Overall, I finished in 2:40:01.  A PR for me!  And, I placed 12/40 in my age group.  After the race, my team provided massages and snacks.  Even better, I went out to eat with my parents and their friend Donna – fresh clams, lobster bisque and fish & chips!  Oh, then I treated myself to a mani-pedi with the special nail polish colors Mona sent me for the big race: Mad About Madison and Sole Mate.

I thought it would be silly to race two weeks before IM Moo, but the race actually psyched me up and helped me remember a few little details (like, it’s a good idea to have your running shoes untied Before the race).  IM Moo, here I come!


Author: sarabstro

My name is Sara Strope. I'm hooked on triathlons. I spend my days building a health tech startup, promoting organ donation, and producing events. Oh, and training!

3 thoughts on “Race Report: Cranberry Trifest

  1. Awesome summary of the day, Sara!!!!! Glad the GU came in handy – but then, when doesn’t it? 🙂 You’ve got me on GU too, sometimes. 😀

    So excited! Can’t wait to track you in the IMOO!!!!!

  2. You did great, Sara! I love the way you raced your plan, planned your race, and got in a good simul-swim for IMoo.

    You’re so ready — even got the mani-pedi…hee hee! I need pix of that. 🙂

    Just remember your nutrition and hydration on race day, regardless of the weather — don’t let cool and cloudy fool ya ‘cuz it could turn hot as it did on me at Timberman!

    Best wishes for a great September race in Madison.
    Cheers, -Sunny

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