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Lava Blog

Dave Ruby

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Okay, will get some race report in and done: It was brutal hot. The swim epic in a canal that is one of the 7 wonders of the world. It was brutal hot. We were racked with our competition. Venezuela, Chile, Argentina, Columbia, El Salvadore, Mexico, Costa Rica so many more all lined up. And of course Panama!  Did I mention it was hot? Yeah like 36C. And the humidity? Yikes. Makes Hawaii feel somewhat tame.They provided exceptional on the race course. Volunteers, ice, water, energy replacement, etc. Off the charts. But damn it was hot.

 

  Highlight of trip no doubt spending time and being treated as if we were family with Gabes beautiful familia. Soccer games, eating like a local, grocery shopping, visiting friends and family, etc.  Everyone and I mean  everyone knows them. And all that do are blessed. We certainly were/are. I will even toss in a few more blogs this week it stoked me such. We are just a little more like a Panamanian again from this trip. And our outcome of the race? Pretty cool.Both Jodi  and I and won our divisions in some steep tough comp qualifying for Worlds. I myself am still quite partial to the off road stuff though. I do not train on aero bars. But the TT bike suited up and delivered the fastest bike split by 12 minutes in my division. Enough cushion to soldier the 1/2 marathon and stay in front. Jodi is just so efficient she just did her thing. Schooling.

Oh and I went 4 hrs. 58 minutes with a not- so- perfect race. Very stoked being a dinasaur and still cracking under 5 hours : )          GREAT vibes this trip wasIMG 2831IMG 2854IMG 2859IMG 2744

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Been off the blog quite a long time. I know I don't care for Facebook or any other social media. At all. Many love it. I am just not one them. But I do like to shout out to those whom assist and/or support us in our travels and competitions here. And again Coates Bicycles was there. Corey, Jack, Greg, the whole crew helped me put this recipe of a-of-somewhat-complicated TT bike together. It seems fast.

 

   Only two rides and lots of fit/stem/bar/seat adjustments and then  had to reluctantly fillet it and pack like a sardine into travel case. Ouch. I hate this part. Especially when it's brand new-just built and flawless. The TSA wil open it up in the morning looking for gawd knows what, and toss everything back in with not much care. Traveling and racing abroad: A new bike does not stay new long. 

   Panama in the morning. Long travel day. Our dear friend Gabe Fernandez and his beautiful wife will pick us up at the airport tomorrow night and take us to our hotel. We are staying at the race host hotel. That works. Race day will be a challenge. Temps read in the 90's and humidity? Off the charts.  Really looking forward to hanging with our Panamanian family of friends. This is our 4th trip to the country. Raced on the Caribbean side and sea first three trips. The Ironman starts with the swim in the famous Canal. Very stoked.IMG 2724IMG 2740

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Pretty stoked to visit and race in Panama for the 4th time soon. The previous 3 were Xterra off road triathlons on the Atlantic Ocean side. We still had to land in Panama City and venture the journey across the country to get there. This upcoming Ironman is right smack in the thick of it all on the Pacific side. Swim starts in the famous Panama Canal. Jodi is now in the race and I predict she will rock some world in her division. Or even most women for that matter.

    Pic here is the last TT bike I had. But been racing the road triathlons the past few years on standard road bike. With a clip on aero bar installed for race day. No biggy. Got the job done.

This upcoming course is pancake flat. Time trial in aero position 99% of the time. I think a Felt IA may be in order. Between Felt and Corey I get pretty hooked up so no brainer there. A few personal tweaks, some race wheels, and see Panama the best way one can: Starting with a swim in the Canal. Long mashing miles on the bike along the Causeway. Run course is along the seashore as well. Yep others do it different. I just prefer this method.8B8C2899-JODI-LavaRacingBW8B8C2926 copy-Lo-Res

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We have been fortunate to have traveled, raced and acquired dear friendships in our previous 3 trips to the beautiful country of Panama. Now with Ironman Panama (and no mas Portobelo) being held there this coming January 31st, excited for another visit. We had been talking of it all year long and Jodi surprises me by getting on line two days before by birthday and well: Bought me my gift! Jodi tried the following day from work for herself in disbelief..........Closed. Full. Sold out. Relays can register only. And now after a week of trying to convince myself it will still be great by myself. But think I am in denial. Will it be good? I am confident. Great? Nada. We race everywhere and everything (with the exception of her wanting and qualifying for Kona so much)!!    Panama in our minds is a paradise. Love both coasts and everything inbetween. Racing there is just icing on the cake. And unfortunately Jodi most likely will be not sampling any cake : (
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IMG 2579Right now on Wednesday about 10 hours since off the plane from Maui. Early a.m. appointments and still recovering. Very challenging course/conditions as normal. So many Euro's and other foreigners these Xterra races have taken off around the globe. So world wide. So many accents and I did not know most. Fast, fast, fast competition. I placed 10th and am so stoked. 7 -8 minutes either way and there were two hands full of others in my division. Very tight. Jodi raced so strong and placed 8th. Her field is not nearly as large but the girls that are racing are ALL fast. Jodi had the 2nd fastest run in her division and ran down many on the brutal steep hot course. Many crack on the run. I sampled some hamstring cramps but just soldiered on taking in everything I could @ the water/gatorade stops and they  could have been much much worse. Never a good thing when happens but again I was able to tame them down and soldier on to a very satisfying finish. Maui is beautiful.The people are beautiful. The trip and race: Exhausting. No denying that. Will post more pics later. Here is Corey's beautiful daughter Sophie. Cheering on her dad. Great job Corey.  That is one of thee toughest courses on this planet. Pics of bike are pre and post race. Certainly takes a beating.IMG 2576

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With Xterra World Championships 3 weeks out I felt the little zippy/all out/red line/pedal to the medal race held here last weekend a good indicator of where my speed(if I have any) is. Xterra is balls out but about 4x's as long in duration. Oh and hell of a lot harder.

  Chose to wear no wetsuit as Maui they are not allowed. No sense in pampering myself with buoyancy (yes I would have) since in a few weeks I will be swimming one mile open rough water without one. Also chose to ride my standard and very non aero road bike for the little extra work and drag (that and I got too lazy to slap an aero bar on night before).  Swim and run went well. Came into transition right behind 1st and 2nd place. Those two kids took off running like, well kids!  Got caught and passed by another runner mid way. Damage control to the finish and stoked with a 4th overall.  What does that indicate to me for Xterra? Nothing. They are two different beasts. But then again this will be my 6th World Championship race on Maui and I know what I can do there. And know what to expect (usually)

 

Surf City Cyclery was out in force and gobbled up lots of hardware. Pic here on podium are long timers and still fast fellas Marc Hapke and Kirk Fitzek. Triathlon with some old school. And old school works. Proof is in the pudding. I mean on the podium.IMG 2879IMG 2871