As soon as we got home from ITU Worlds, it was race week again! Kyle (his race report here!) and I headed out to Oklahoma City to race the Redman Tri Half which was this year’s USAT Long Course National Championship. Oklahoma City was a cool place to visit, it’s like a little Texas except everyone is friendlier! The city really got on board with the race too, which is so encouraging to see as an out of town athlete. Much better than when the locals resent you for causing weekend traffic jams. When we checked in to our hotel, there was a big “Welcome Redman Athletes!” banner up, the front desk clerk was wearing a Redman shirt, and we even got goodie bags! Seeminly small things, but they go a long way in making athletes feel welcomed and excited about the race. Even in a non-championship year, Redman would be an excellent race. Very well organized, all details and even unlikely contingency plans are clearly communicated, and the RD and great volunteers do a great job creating a fun and enjoyable atmosphere for athletes and spectators. If it’s not on your bucket list of races, it should be!!
Le sigh. I’m a person that loves to plan, schedule, and prepare everything going in to a race. ITU sure made my compulsive planning difficult. From getting late, incomplete, and conflicting information about rules and schedules, it certainly was a good test and learning experience for dealing with the stress and unknowns of race week. I’d probably give myself a C- on this test.
I’ll spare going in to too much detail, but it resulted in a lot of hauling bikes and gear down impossibly narrow staircases, standing around aimlessly for hours unsure of where to go, and then there was the disc wheel debacle.