Tuesday, December 15, 2009

IMAZ winner Sam McGlone checks in.

Sam proudly competes on her ISM Adamo Racing saddle.

I am thrilled to cap off the 2009 season with my first Ironman win and a new course record at Ironman Arizona last weekend. At the beginning of the year I was unsure if I would be making it back to racing after a serious injury kept me sidelined all winter, so to end with a win was the icing on the cake.
It was cold and dark as 2400 athletes took to Tempe Town lake at 7am. Was I the only one that found it odd swimming through the desert in November ? The swim was the low point of my race – I can’t make excuses; everyone was swimming in the same frigid water, but I just felt like my arms never warmed up. Usually I like to hang on the feet of faster swimmers but when I saw nothing but open water in front of me I knew it was bad news because it meant I was not in the lead, but so far back I couldn’t even see the lead!
Exiting the water 8 minutes down from Leanda Cave, I had my work cut out for me on the bike. The 3 loop course was flat and windy – with a slight rise up to the turn-around then a screaming fast “descent” back to town, just made for my Argon E-114 TT bike. I rode hard and took back a few minutes per loop on the leaders, ending with a 4:56 bike split – the fastest of the day.
Coming into T2 I had taken over 2nd place and was closing in on Leanda. I took the lead at the end of the first loop and stayed there for the rest of the day. The run course was awesome – tons of spectators and the three loop format meant we were never far from the next cheering section, a far cry from the loneliness of Kona’s Queen K highway. A big shout out to Zoot for my custom race flats they made with only a few weeks turnaround time – I know the matching kit was good for a few minutes on the run course.
Finishing in 9:09, I set a new course record with the fastest bike split and 2nd fastest run of the day. This was the highlight of the season which had started with injury and ended in my first Ironman win. It was even more special to win at “home” in my newly adopted state of Arizona.
Thanks to everyone who stuck it out through the injury and for all the support this season!

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