by Dom Zambrano
The alarm goes off at 4am, my feet seemingly set to autopilot drag me to the car, and my two state journey from Florida begins. For those of you who don’t know the Traditions triathlon is held in the beautiful Traditions subdivision in southern Mississippi.
Transition opens as the starry night sky gives way to the warm orange hue of sunrise. The athletes flock in and begin their pre-race routines which include everything from heavy metal in the car to yoga on the lawn. Finally, the clock strikes 7:50 and the National Anthem is played while the flag is waving and teeth are chattering. The air is 50F and the water is hovering above 70F. The athletes are all in neoprene and lined up like seals at Sea World. One by one being released into the lake. The bike leg is just as we all remember which is hilly and quite spirited. The hum of the carbon wheels echoes through the trees as the riders navigate the out-and-back course. A quick lap around the parking lot and it’s time to hop off the bike and onto the trails. The run course takes a scenic tour through the neighborhood where families are cheering from the porches and the cowbells ring. This inspiration soon fades as athletes are tossed into the short section of technical dirt trail eventually spitting onto Traditions main drive. One small hill, an aid station, and a wooden bridge later one can hear the finish line cheers and music. Straighten up and put on a smile for the finish line because you are outside doing what you love with 300 of your new best friends.
Thank you to the GCTT sponsors and especially Run-N-Tri for putting on such great early-season event and to Pro Cycle & Tri for providing bike support! This was my first triathlon in 2015 and has been my season opener ever since. The great volunteer and event sponsor support make for a safe, fun, and fast event! I guess you could say it has become quite the…wait for it….tradition.
Until next time be safe, have fun, and race hard!
Results link: http://www.splitmastertiming.com/assets/2017/Traditions%20Final%20Splits.pdf