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2013 Rev3 Quassy HalfRev Race Review

Race Name: Rev3 Quassy HalfRev

Race Location & Country: Quassy Amusement Park, Middlebury, CT, USA

Date: June 2 2013

Race Category: Male 45-49

Why did I do this race? Within driving distance(3.5hrs). Supposed to be a good prep race for Ironman Lake Placid, which I am doing 2 months later. Heard Rev3 races are very well down and organized.

The Swim

1.2 mile clockwise triangle. Fresh water lake swim. Very clean. Running start from beach. Wave start. 2nd leg was VERY difficult to sight due to swimming directly into sunlight. 3rd/last leg was had sun on left side breath, but eventually went behind trees. Buoys good distance apart. Had paddleboarders on inside and kayakers on outside provided helpful to keep straight when I could not sight buoys. This swim was a personal fastest swim for half-iron distance at 32:45 minutes. Also, I was in the very last wave of the race, which kind of sucked. Did a lot of passing all day long.

The Bike

REv3 Quassy Bike Finish

56 miles. Hilly to say the least. I think almost every road had the word “Hill” in it. I really like this course despite the amount of difficulty. I liked the variation of it. With the hills come some very fast downhills too, which you need to take full advantage of. I was a little cautious on some of them since I had not ridden the course before. The one downhill that ends near a reservoir, was a little tricky as it made a right turn at the bottom which forced me to take the turn a bit wide into the opposite lane. The course was not closed to vehicles too, so extra caution is required. There were 2 aid stations on the course the were perfectly placed distance-wise for my hydration needs. I definitely tried to conserve some energy on bike for the run, but still ended up with a 3:11 time(~17.5mph). Considering the ~6400 ft of elevation gain, I was ok with that.

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The RunREv3 Quassy Run Start

13.1 miles of more hills. This run course was brutal! Other than the first mile or two, it seemed to be up and down after that. The worst was the dirt road with what seemed to be an endless hill. This course took all I had and then some. I have not seen that many people walking since volunteering at IMLP last year. Temperature also did not help as it was humid and in the mid-80’s. It  was shady in spots and I am sure if you were either faster or in an earlier wave you may have gotten more of that. Aid stations were pretty much every mile to mile and a half. They even had salt tabs at some of them. They were also well stocked with ice which is usually out by the time last wave people like me come through. At around mile 9 you run by the finish at the park and then head out for another 3 or so miles. While this provides a little boost from fans, it is short-lived as you head away from the finish line. The hills continue too. For future reference, make sure you save a lot of energy for this run. I finished with a 2:05, which considering the terrain, I am more than happy with.

 

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Transition

Transition is probably one of the best I have seen. Each spot is marked with your name and bib # on the wooden framed “racks” on the ground. The frame has a narrow section to stick your rear tire of your bike and a wider section for your bag. Your race gear is then laid out in front of the wood box. It is very clear what real estate is yours and there is adequate room. I was 3 rows from the swim and entrance and run exit which was nice. Bike in/out was a bit of haul, but still not too bad.

Transition Setup

 

Race Organization

Race was very well organized. Venue was a good location base for race, although I had a bit higher expectations for Quassy Amusement Park. I thought it was more along the lines of Dorney Park, but it was basically just a more glorified carnival. Nonetheless, it provided ample room for race expo, registration, store and feeding area.

My one gripe, which is actually a gripe with many races, is the “mandatory” pre-race meeting. First off they are usually Rev3 Quassy Pre-Race Meetingin the middle of the day, which pretty much disrupts you for doing anything unless you are hanging out at the venue which we usually don’t do. The other thing is they are anything but mandatory. No one is checking off your bib # when you show up. I did get some helpful information, but stop with the mandatory crap.

Post-race food was good and they even had a good variety even for a plant-based vegan. Baked Ziti, salad, veggies and another veggie-pasta casserole was all you can eat. They even had veggie burgers, which I would not have know about if not for the girl behind me didn’t not ask. They also had burgers and hot dogs too, for the carnivores.

Top Tips

  • Wear polarized/tinted goggles for swim. Sun on second leg makes for difficult sighting. Use the lifeguards instead of buoys.
  • Be ready for hills. Spin easy gears on the climbs and bomb the downhills. Save your legs for the run.
  • Pace yourself on the run. Go easy, but consistent on the big, dirt road climb and remember there are more hills after that.

How did you do?

I PR-ed at the Half-iron distance with a 5:54:52 on what was an extremely difficult course, so I am pretty stoked about that. This race also gave me good confidence for my upcoming first Ironman at Lake Placid. It is a good test of your fitness for that race. During the run I felt like I was not doing well because it was so demanding, but when it was all over I was very happy with the result.

Rev3 Quassy Finish Photo

Verdict

Great race if you are looking for a difficult and challenging race. Good prep gauge for Ironman Lake Placid. Race is also very family friendly too. Family members are allowed to run down the race chute with you. Amusement park and beach provide additional things for kids to do and they also have other activities such as a glow in the dark 5k and adventure race. Rev3 is a class operation. Look out WTC!

Revving Up for Rev3 Quassy

This past week has been a scorcher. Temperatures were up in the high 80’s and low 90’s with brutal humidity. Thankfully, it is a race week and my training volume was a bit less. Although it may have been the fact that it was a race week that it was so tough. I always feel like crap during those easy weeks. Regardless I made it through and now I have a entire day off of training tomorrow since it is the day before Rev3 Quassy Half.

We made our way up to Middlebury, CT this afternoon. When we got on I-84 I spotted some heavy traffic further down the road and we detoured through the back streets of CT. It was pretty cool drive with the little towns and well forested land. I didn’t see any of the gross McMansion developments like we have at home. All the houses are well spaced out and each one is different.  One thing I noticed as we got closer to the area where the triathlon takes place is that almost every road had the word “hill” in it. And we drove up and down some nasty ones too. Should be an interesting race!

Quassy Amusement Park-Wooden Warrior

Quassy Amusement Park-Wooden Warrior

Eventually we got to the Quassy Amusement Park, which is ground-zero for the triathlon event. My wife and I were pretty excited to go and ride the roller coaster this weekend, but were a bit disappointed when we arrived and saw how small the place was. It is basically the size of a decent size carnival. The roller coaster is is wooden and pretty small. We parked the car and made our way to the packet pickup area and collected my bibs, stickers, and number tattoos. We then sauntered over to the pavillion area where they had setup the Rev3 gear store. I grabbed my swag bag which was basically just a visor and a couple of tickets to the park. I then purchased a new Rev3 “Purist” water bottle to replace the one I will toss during the race and my wife got yet another pair of Newton running shoes. I think we need to take stock in that company. They were 30% off and they gave her a free pair of socks and a hat.

Rev3 Quassy Gear Shop

Rev3 Quassy Gear Shop

Rev3 Quassy Transition-Very Nice!

Rev3 Quassy Transition-Very Nice!

Lake Quassapaug-Hope it look that nice on Sunday!!

Lake Quassapaug-Hope it look that nice on Sunday!!

Denise at Lake Quassapaug-Clutching her Newtons

Denise at Lake Quassapaug-Clutching her Newtons

Rev3 Quassy Swag

Rev3 Quassy Swag

 

We then headed up the road to Maggie McFly’s for dinner. It is a pretty cool Irish pub-style place with 2 floors and totally open in the center where bar is and all kinds of stuff hanging from the ceiling. We had to wait a few minutes and ended up getting this large corner booth. It was a bit weird sitting next to each other like that. I had some veggie pot stickers and veggie pasta dish which was pretty good. My wife ordered some vegetable medley side which ended up being a pile of corn with a piece of carrot in the middle. LOL! She sent that back for some asparagus which was just a bunch of it thrown on the plate. She also got a grass-fed burger which she said was pretty good. Place was pretty busy and you can spot all the triathletes coming in and out of the place.

After dinner we headed further west to Southington, CT to our hotel. I had originally booked a Courtyard in Waterbury, but later realized they had no refrigerator or microwave in the rooms. I then got on Hotels.com and switched it up for a Comfort Suites in Southington, which is a little further west. It is worth it to have some cooking facilities. The Comfort Suites had good reviews and they are pretty accurate. Place is very nice and clean and the room has all the goodies. Even have a sofa to chill on.

Well tomorrow is a big chill day. We are planning on hitting Hartford and New Haven with a stop back at the park to drop my bike off for transition and mandatory race meeting. I hate how those are right in the middle of the day! Anyway that is all for now.

You can also check out the Rev3 Live Update page for the latest Rev3 Quassy info.