With the 2013 triathlon season in full swing, athletes have multiple opportunities to race in Texas. For example, Austin will host one popular race, Jack’s Generic Triathlon, at the start of August. This event holds the spot as the 4th race in the Texas Tri series.
Jack’s Generic Triathlon in Lake Pflugerville, TX commences on Sunday, August 4th. This popular triathlon was formerly held at the Texas Ski Ranch in San Marcos. The new location returns this classic triathlon to the backyard of the Austin triathlon community and povides a larger venue in order to accommodate more participants. The inaugural Jack’s Generic Triathlon took place in 2003 with 250 registered athletes. The event grew tremendously over the years, and we expect nearly 1,000 participants between the two distances for
This year’s event also hosts a new intermediate distance for participants (1,000m- 25.8 miles- 6 miles), as well as the classic sprint distance (500m- 12.9 miles- 3 miles). The option of the intermediate distance allows newer triathletes to experience a semi-long distance with a shorter 500m swim. Furthermore, the intermediate distance can also function as a tune-up or a change of pace for athletes who race the longer styles year round.
Expect to see some of the local elites on the course going after age group and overall podium positions. For example, returning winner Jamie Cleveland, triathlete and owner of Hill Country Running, looks for the overall win in his Texas Iron kit.
To ease your mind, sway your fears, and let you know what to expect, we prepared a survival guide of information below.
The intermediate and sprint distance courses traverse the same 500m out and back course in Lake Pflugerville. The Pentagonal shaped swim allows athletes to utilize the open water and worry solely about negotiating one 90 turn before coming back to shore. Intermediate athletes return to the water for their second course lap after a short run on the gravel shore.
The conditions are typically calm this time of year for Lake Pflugerville, with good visibility and very little interference from the underwater vegetation. Finally, the cool water encourages a great race start for athletes.
Is it legal to wear a wetsuit?
No. You can’t wear a wetsuit this time of year, but intermediate distance athletes should consider wearing a speed suit.
What to sight?
High Five Events always set swim courses with clearly visible sight buoys and turn buoys
How does a lap swim course work?
As mentioned above, the 1000m swim for the intermediate distance is broken up by a brief run on the gravel shore. In order to save time, remember to run the tangent of the water.
How is the run to the transition area?
The run across park to the transition area is a mix of gravel, grass, and carpet.
The 12.9mile bike course caters to the time trial specialist. The layout of the course lap is open, flat, and broken up by three small rolling hills. In total, the course includes twelve sweeping turns that allow riders to easily maintain speed on the open roads in Northeast Austin. Like a lot of roads in the greater Austin area, the surface varies from smooth pavement to resurfaced chip seal.
What type of wheels should I use?
Use your discretion and choose a wheel that is as aerodynamic as you can handle on the open course. However, be aware that the wind might pick up and expose riders to cross winds.
What is the USATF policy on Drafting/Passing?
Be aware of the riders around you at all times and follow the rules of USA Triathlon for your safety on course
How is the traffic on the course?
The faster athletes competing in the intermediate distance will likely catch up to the athletes in the later waves of the sprint distance. Unless passing, riders should stay to the right.
Utilizing the lake trail system you will follow the perimeter of the lake on the crushed gravel path for 1 loop (3 miles) for sprint, and 2 loops (6 miles) for intermediate distance. Aid will be set at run out, 1 mile, and 2 mile. Water and Gatorade will be at all station. Simple and easy to follow the course will allow for athletes to put their heads down and bring it home to the finish where each athlete will receive a cold sport bottle to rehydrate.
Does the run course have shade?
No. The entire 3-mile course is uncovered.
How is the surface?
The surface is similar to the surface of the Roy Butler Hike and Bike trail at Lady Bird Lake, so you definitely need the best triathlon running shoes you can find. The crushed gravel is soft on the knees, but it is also a little loose in some spots. Any road shoe will work.
Best of luck to all participants racing at the new location of Jack’s Generic Triathlon.
See you race morning.