Team SFHW and Jack Kane athlete, Lance Corporal Michael Politowicz competed in his first race this past weekend since coming home from Afghanistan. The race Whale Head Club Corolla Pedal-Foot-Paddle Triathlon
Mike’s Race Report[hr] The competitors were from all over NC. The race was to benefit the Whalehead Club Museum.
It started at 8 a.m. with heats of five racers. The ages were from 10 to 60. All shapes and size were out to enjoy the beautiful day on the banks of Corolla N.C. The kayak stage took you a mile out into the intercoastal waters. With a gentle breeze blowing across the water it created waves big enough to break over the bow of the boat. After a quick exit of my boat with a little help from the race staff, I began a short dash to my bike. While running I began to take of my PFD (personal flotation device) to try and save time in the transition. I quickly sat down and threw my shoes as fast I could. I soon realized I was in second place playing catch up.
I hit the first turn on the bike stage and saw the lead racer was a half mile away. I made quick work of closing the gap and got with in four bike lengths just short of the three mile mark. By mile five I was beginning to feel the effects of drafting (note: it’s legal in this event) and listening to him shift quickly through his gears to keep his legs spinning. I realized it was mile seven and time to overtake him and push hard to the next stage.
As I pulled up to the running transition I watched as I was eclipsed in the staging area. It seemed liked my competitor transitioned in a blink of an eye. As I fumbled to get my shoes on, I soon realized numb feet are not fun to run on. I had tried something new on race day. While beginnig the run and final stage of the race I just stayed focused on my survival bracelet that was given to me as a memorial to my best friend Josh McDaniels. As I came into the final stretch, Elijah came running up to motivate me to run faster and push through the pain, but all I needed was my bracelet.
I finished second in my heat with my head held high and proud of my 1hr 56 sec finished and reminiscing on the fact that exactly a year ago I was dealing with being the victim of a IED.
Total Time – 1:00:56
Kayak – 12 min
Bike – 30 min
Run – 18 min 56 sec