Wisconsin World Championships Race Report

Lake Mills Triathlon Race Report - Eric Engel In case you missed it, the Wisconsin World Sprint Championships were held in Lake Mills, WI last weekend. This event featured some of the World’s Finest local athletes from around Madison and Milwaukee. Thousands hundreds gathered on a rainy and windy day at the Mill.


Swim: The rain began to fall about 25 minutes before the start of the race. The elite wave was the first to go off on the 400 yd rectangle swim. There were about 20 men and women in the elite wave. I positioned myself on the right side of the front row as we waded into the water. The gun went off and it was a sprint to make the first buoy about 100 yds off shore. I made it to the buoy in 3rd place and got into my rhythm on the back stretch. I watched 2 other races pass me before I made the turn for the final 100 yds. I knew before the race there were a couple of fast swimmers including some ex-college swimmers in the field, I just needed to minimize the gap out of the water.

Once I made it to shore I peeled off my TYR Hurricane wetsuit and sprinted towards T1. I heard a spectator in the crowd yell out, “:35 seconds back of the leader.” I was happy with that and I could see the lead pack making their way into transition. (Swim: 6:03, 12th fastest overall split)

Lake Mills Triathlon - Eric Engel Swim TYR Freak of Nature

T1: Once into transition I grabbed my Rudy Project Wingspan 57 and ran my bike out of transition. I made up 10-15 seconds on some of the leaders in transition. (T1 – 1:28, 5th fastest overall split)

Bike: I could still see all the leaders on the bike so I pushed hard to close the gap before we got too far into the race. It was only 15 miles so I know I needed to stay close to the front. My power meter wasn’t reading on my Garmin so I had to just go on feel. I passed two guys right away, which put me into third. About a minute later I passed the 2nd place guy. I had the leader in my sights, a local triathlete I was very familiar with from the Madison area. He is a GREAT runner so I knew I needed to be leading off the bike in order to win. I kept him in my sights for the majority of the race before deciding it was time to put the pedal down. At about mile 11 or 12, I cranked past him, hoping to put a time gap between us on the run. (Bike – 36:32, fastest overall split)

T2: As I came into transition, I knew I was leading the race, but I also knew I only had a 15-20 second gap on the 2nd place athlete, who happened to be a great runner. I hopped off the bike and quickly threw on my shoes. (T2: :40 2nd fastest split overall)

Run: I ran out of transition and onto the gravel path not looking at my pace, I was running to keep the lead. A few minutes into the race I began to hear footsteps, not good. I was passed around the 1 mile mark. I tried for 20 seconds to match his pace, but my legs just weren’t there. I struggled to keep a 6 min/mile pace the last 2 miles as I glanced behind me looking for the 3rd place athlete. He never came, so I ran into the finish. (Run – 18:23, 9th fastest overall).

Lake Mills Triathlon - Eric Engel RunOverall: 1:03:03 – 2nd overall and 1st in my 25-29 AG

Lake Mills Triathlon - Eric Engel results

Lake Mills Triathlon - Eric Engel Finish


Up Next: Today marks 13 days from IRONMAN Coeur d’Alene. I loved this race last year and I am hoping to re-qualify for Kona.  Pre-race report coming soon! Thanks dropping in! -E

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