Wine Country Racing

full_vm_retail_v2.aiA contingent of fiesty Hypercat athletes descended on the beautiful country side of Santa Rosa, CA for a toasty day of multisport racing over the weekend.  Contested on Saturday, August 1 were the Full Vineman, Full Vineman Aquabike, Half Vineman Aquabike and Barb’s Race Half Ironman events.  The Full Vineman is the oldest independent iron distance triathlon in the United States. The 2.4 mile swim, 112 mile bike and 26.2 mile event offers a formidable challenge for all racers and draws many a top long course triathlete to test their endurance mettle.  Quickly growing in popularity are the Full and Half Aquabike events which challenge athletes to race a swim/bike combination following the same course as the triathlon events. Barb’s Race is the only all-female half-ironman triathlon in the country and its cause (to fight cancer) spirit and competition makes it a very popular August event in Northern California.

We like wine!

We like wine!

This year, several Hypercat athletes choose to compete in the Aquabike events as part of their preparation for other later season events. These ‘training event’s provide the ideal opportunity to simulate race conditions for Ironman and half ironman racing without the recovery costs of the run leg.  Steve Fung of Orinda, CA had a strong day setting a new personal best in the 2.4 mile swim and riding a strong 5:44:38 for the 112 mile bike leg. Steve’s overall time of 6:51:14 placed him 5th M35-39.
Considering Steve suffered two (!) flat tires near 90 and 100 miles, his time and finishing place is even more impressive.  No doubt that the flat tires cost Steve valuable time that might have enabled him to give his coach, Rachel Casanta a ride for her money. Rachel finished 2nd female overall, behind fellow pro Teri Albertazzi,  in a time of 6:44:10. She also set a personal best for the 2.4 mile swim (1:09:56) and clocked a 5:30:15 for the 112 mile bike.  

Wine is good!

Wine is good!

Jen Kibler of San Francisco is currently preparing for Ironman Arizona this November. Jen competed in the Half Vineman Aquabike as part of her training preparations.  Rewarded for her efforts on warm, sunny day Jen placed 1st in the F25-29 age group and showed she is well on her way to becoming an Ironman!  Congratulations Jen! barbs_race_color41

The race production staff at Vineman certainly had their hands full with the Full Vineman and Aquabike events being contested simulataneously. Add to the mix, the all-women’s Barb’s Race Half-Ironman and you have one large multisport party!  Two Hypercat Racing athletes, Tracey Roeder and Catherine Hackett were both first time half-ironman competitors. Roeder, mom of two, competed at the Wildlfower Olympic and Escape from Alcatraz earlier this year.  During the summer she juggled her training with family, work and life’s demands. Tracey triumphantly crossed the finishline at Barbs in 6:25:18 for a 17th place F40-44 finish!  Tracy now has her sights on the California International Marathon on December 6th.

Catherine Hackett, a teacher residing in San Francisco surprised herself as showed that yes, she can do it! Hackett finished her first half ironman (and only second triathlon ever) in 7:37:04 finished 48th F35-39. Way to go Catherine! Your students will be so inspired! Catherine is now focusing her training on preparations to run the New York City marathon this November.

Vineman Aquabike and Full Vineman Festivities

Wine is Nice!

Wine is Nice!

Coach Rachel Casanta made a soft return to racing with her entry into the Vineman Aquabike, a 1.2 mile swim and 56 mile bike. Rachel showed that she won’t give up or give in to the struggles with her back. She finished 3rd place overall women in the race.

Following the Aquabike, Rachel joined Coach Phil Casanta and Hypercat and San Francisco Triathlon club athlete, Tilden Moschetti to volunteer for the Full Vineman. The intrepid trio sprayed athletes with cool water, handed out cookies, fruit and drink from 2pm until 11pm on the run course.

Throughout the warm afternoon, many pictures were snapped to remember the day by.

Flavio and Rachel

Flavio and Rachel

Shower anyone?

Shower anyone?

Coach Phil kept athletes cool with a nice, quick roadside shower. By the end of the day, he was as wet from providing the ‘showers’ as the athletes who were showered!

Just a quick stop!

Bill Escobar of the Rincon Triathlon Club of Ventura also made  a quick pit stop and took a few moments to get a picture taken with Coach Rachel. Bill is the president of the Rincon Tri Club and does a lot to support and give back to the Ventura area community. As the night wore on, it got dark, but the fun continued.

Food is good!

Food is good!