The Buzzard

Rob wrecks at Rays, returns rapidly to really fast racing

Rob wrecks at Ray's, returns rapidly to really fast racing

The Buzzard Duathlon marks the beginning of the multisport season in Ohio.  Usually, it marks the beginning of the multisport season in Ohio with cold winds, rain, sleet, or an unhappy combination of all these.  This year was different!

Under a bright sky and temps racing to crack 90 degrees, hundreds of Cleveland’s athletes unhooked their bikes from stationary trainers and met at Hinkley, all of us squinting confusedly at the bright yellow orb in the sky.  Pasty white and freshly shorn legs soon packed together for Paul Lentini’s official siren, and we were off.  The course is simple:  One lap running, 5 laps biking, and another lap running.  Or, it would be simple if it weren’t for the hills– more about them in a bit.


There were ten of us decked out in our blue and green, although some of the wiser among us opted for the run-bike biathlon rather than the run-bike-run duathlon.  Leah Halloran launched from the line, clocking a 5:51 first mile before backing off a bit.  She won the women’s race by at least five minutes.  In an eye-opening display of the results of a disciplined winter, Aussie Rob surprised a lot of people with a very strong race, finishing 4th overall and first in his age group.  Awesome job, Rob.  Click through for more results and reports from our crew.

The rest of our crew was made up of Mike Schaefer, Brandy Smith, Marty Mason, Andy Cornwell, Bruce MacDonald, Scott Zubricky, Aaron Rood, Annie Callahan, Jen Davila, and Kevin Krol.  It seemed like every time you turned around, there was another SSSMSTer crossing the line.  Big thanks to Nacho, Jason Halloran, and Jackson Rood for cheering– young Jackson has a pair of lungs! (although I suspect the Roods could have told you that already)

Props to Paul and Tammy Lentini for volunteering– you guys were great!

Here are some reports from our group:

Aussie Rob:

As everyone knows, Buzzard is a good early season test to see where you’re at, and I wasn’t sure after sitting out for a few weeks with a broken collarbone. Ran a 5k PR pace despite the hilly course on the first loop and managed to stay in the top 10 there hoping to pick a few guys off on the bike.

Bike went as planned, (the plan being to try not to get passed!) and managed to get a few of the faster runners in front of me there. Jumped off the bike with Aaron and Marty right behind me, and thought to myself, “well, it’s only a matter of time with those two” and just tried to hold them off for as long as I could. Turned out I managed to hold them off the whole way! Very unexpected, and very happy to finish as high as I did. This was my first top 5 OA, and first AG win in any event. Capped the event with a nice (albeit tiring) ride back to Lakewood with some of the crew. Good day, and hopefully a start to a good year.

Congrats to everyone else racing , especially Leah, who defended her title of “Queen of the Buzzards”!

Mike Schaefer:

The team did awesome and it was so much fun! I ran conservatively as 6mi is pretty far for me. Gotta start doing some speed work soon to feel more comfortable sub-7min pace. I had very steady splits – 20min run, 8min/lap on bike (within 20sec each lap), then 21 min run. Finish was one minute better than last year and a few places higher, so can’t complain! Congrats everyone!

Marty Mason:

Another great Hinckley Duathlon for SSSMT. Weather was perfect. I will never complain about the warmth and sunshine. Aussie Rob’s cycling was something to behold. I was very impressed. Rood also dragged me, his elder by a few years, to the finish line and shoved me to fifth place overall.

Leah Halloran:

A HUGE thanks to Paul, the official starter, and Tammy for volunteering their time to make the race a success. Thanks to Nacho, Jason and Jackson Rood for sporting their cheerleading skills.

Two words to describe this race: VERY HARD! I had written a lot but accidentally deleted it. 🙂

Bruce Mac:

Riding down to the race seemed like a good idea, get some extra miles in before the half IM in 6 weeks, then get some work on the run and bike in race conditions. 4 of us road down, and with Jason and Nacho not racing Andy and I figured those guys could pull us there. Jason understood this, and was a great help, Nacho–not so much. Drafty Smurf sucked wheels and took a few 30 second pulls, Jason did the majority (thanks), and Andy and I took the rest. We pulled in about 20 minutes prior to the race, and it was downhill (and uphill) from there. Legs cramped really bad on the run, surfing for a week with no running the week prior didn’t help. Got to the bike in OK shape, and settled into a good pace until I heard something fly off my bike prior on the first hill of the second lap. Wasn’t sure what it was, but with a big down hill around the corner, I was hoping it wasn’t something that hed a wheel on. It wasn’t a wheel, it was a pedal. The speedplays pooped apart, and I rod the final 2 and half laps on the post, no clip-in. Climbing was tough with no pull on the pedals, but held on for an OK finish. Great job by all the other team members.

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6 Responses

  1. Nice work all! Wish we could have been there to see it. I know Andrea would have loved to have done that race…it’s her favorite.

    JS

  2. Nice work everyone!!!! sorry we couldn’t be there.

  3. Aussie- Dude- take some credit– Marty and I weren’t that close. Nice work you hammered

    Rock On

    Ar

  4. It looked awesome to see the WHOLE front row of the start wearing SSSMST uniforms. Big ups to Marty’s family for handling the run exit water station, and Jocelyn’s mom (Joanne) at the other . It saved Tammy the hassle of running back and forth.

  5. Does anyone have a tanning bed that we can lock Aussie in for a week or two?

  6. My skin scoffs at pitiful tanning beds.

    20 years of the Australian sun and no ozone layer didn’t help me get a tan, so im afraid theres nothing in a Cleveland summers arsenal that will get the job done either.

    It’s one gene I’m glad i didn’t pass along to my kids!

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