Thursday, June 22, 2017

Daybreak Start List + Video to Get You Hyped!

In addition to the start list below, here's an awesome video shot by SLTC featuring race director Cody Ford & SLTC president Adam Lee. Shout out to Nathan Last for editing and everyone else involved!

May be missing some last-minute sign ups, but here's the lion's share of the field

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Tuesday, June 20, 2017

DinoTri Preview!

The infamous DinoTri is taking place this Saturday in Vernal, UT. As we've done with other races, we reached out to a couple experts to get some intel on the course & race in general. Big thanks to Dan Trott (AKA "The Danimal") and Cagey Veteran Christopher White for their time and insight on this race.

Only a couple days left to claim a spot, so go grab one if it sounds like a good time!


The Danimal: The DinoTri is a fantastic race. I really enjoy the laid back, old school vibe and challenging, fun course. I decided not to make the trip to Vernal this year with a toddler and a newborn but I hope to make it back soon.

C White: DinoTri is a great little race held annually in Vernal. This race has a good local feel and is super laid back. Because the location is somewhat remote, the race is usually pretty small. I’ve done it the last two years. In 2015 there were 60 people in the Olympic and 110 people in the sprint and last year there were 50 people in the Olympic and 74 in the sprint. Because the race is small yet USAT sanctioned, it is usually pretty easy to qualify for nationals.

Pre Race

The Danimal: Like many races in Utah this is a split transition race so make sure you get your bike checked in the night before and you know the game plan for the morning shuttle from the USU Vernal campus (Finish/T2) to Red Fleet State Park (Swim/T1).

C White: Packet pickup will be the night before the race. You will also drop your bike off at the swim venue the night before the race. The swim is held at Red Fleet State Park which is at the bottom of a huge hill. They have people watch the bikes overnight so they will be safe. When you do drop off your bike, be prepared to have it inspected before you drop it off. Make sure your brakes are functioning and that your bar end plugs are intact, it’s a USAT rule. On race morning, you will drive to the finish line and set up your T2, then board a bus to drive to the swim start. You will be given a garbage bag with your race number written on it for your wetsuit, goggles and anything else you happen to bring with you to the swim. I wouldn’t bring anything important with you such as cell phones or car keys. Better to just not risk it. I usually just ride up in my race kit so I have less to put in the bag on race morning.


The Danimal: You will be treated to fantastic scenery and chilly water at Red Fleet State Park. Be sure to pack your wetsuit and warm up beforehand!

C White: Last year the water was comfortable, but bring your wetsuit. They usually send the Olympic racers off first - men, then women, then the sprint athletes to follow again men, then women. This race is a deep water start so you will jump off the dock and tread water until the race director shouts GO! Sprint athletes do one 750 m loop and Olympic athletes do two. You will exit the water on a boat ramp and run up a hill into T1 where you strip your wetsuit, stuff it into a bag and head off on the bike.


The Danimal: The bike leg is the highlight of the course. The course starts with a quick and STEEP climb out of Red Fleet State park. You can see below that I had to assume the triathlete position of shame (i.e. not in the aerobars. I was also thankful for the 28 tooth cog I had on my bike. The organizers have a chip mat at the top so you can see how you did on the climb relative to your competition. After another smaller but also steep climb the bike is a ripping downhill past Steinaker reservoir all the way back to Vernal. This section is a lot of fun. At this point, the sprint course heads to T2. The olympic course makes a turn and heads up dry fork canyon which is a longer and lower grade climb. Olympic racers will climb up the canyon about 6 miles and then hit the turn-around for a quick decent back to Vernal.

C White: Red Fleet is at the bottom of a big hill, which means you have to climb that hill on the bike ride. The climb peaks at about 2 miles. For sprint athletes it is almost all downhill for the rest of the 13 mile ride. Olympic athletes get the same downhill, but then ride up a different canyon and climb again for about 6 miles. The last eight miles of the Oly course is all downhill. Because this ride has a lot of downhill and because it is out in the deserts of the Uintah Basin, keep an eye out for wildlife. You will be going fast and you wouldn’t want to have a collision with an animal. When I did this race in 2016 I ran over and killed a rabbit while going about 40 mph. It was one of the most terrifying moments I’ve had on a bicycle. When you finish the bike, you will cruise into T2 in the parking lot of the college in Vernal and prepare for the run.


The Danimal: The run course is a kind of cross shape with multiple 180 turns around the USU Vernal campus. The advantage of so many turn arounds (or disadvantage, if you run like I do, ha) is that you can keep close tabs on your competition. Each lap is 5K so the sprint racers will do 1 lap and the olympic racers 2. It is flat and not a lot of shade so it can get toasty.

C White: The run for this race is really cool. There is a HUGE roundabout just south of the college and the run is centralized around that roundabout. You first head south to the roundabout and head west for the first of three out and backs. Next is south out and back, east out and back and, for the sprinters, north into the college parking lot for the finish and post-race party. Oly athletes will do another loop to complete the 6.2 mile run. For the sprint, the run has about 70-90 feet elevation gain over 3.1 miles so it’s pretty flat. The nice thing about so many out and backs is that you will see your friends and family who might be racing while you are running and any competition you might be hoping to gain on.

Post Race

The Danimal: A couple final tips. Last year we made a weekend out of it and camped with my wife and kid at Steinaker on Friday and Saturday night. We made a quick side trip up to Flaming Gorge after the race. Dinosaur National Monument (race name sake) would also make for a nice side trip. I also recommend the burger at Vernal Brewing Company for post-race refueling.

C White: The party and the food are pretty good after finishing. They have always had the usual fare: oranges, bagels, bananas, chocolate milk, but this race also has coolers full of ice cream, and Great Harvest bread and butter which is one of the most amazing things I’ve eaten after a race. The awards and medals do not disappoint. In 2015 I happened to get 2nd overall in the sprint and got this really cool slab of sandstone. Last year the overall trophies were these really neat metal cutouts. The finisher medals have never failed to disappoint either. For more info on this race or to sign up go to

Main Site: DinoTri

Next several on the local calendar to consider!

Jun 24:  Daybreak (S & O) - South Jordan
DinoTri (S & O) - Vernal
Jul 8:   
Echo (S & O) - Coalville
Jul 15:  
Topaz (S & O) - Delta

Jul 15:  Toughman Utah Half
Jul 15:  San Rafael Classic Triathlon - Huntington

Sunday, June 18, 2017

Results Breakdown: Rock Cliff 2017

Congrats to all who got out and raced at Rock Cliff!

This post has more detail behind the results breakdown methodology if you're interested.

Along with other Utah races, we'll use these results towards SWAG ANNOUNCEMENT 2017Remember we take the average of your 3 best local races (overall %) for "Most Improved Triathlete" awards, rankings, etc, so plan your season accordingly!

The next few qualifying races on the Utah calendar are:  

Jun 24:  Daybreak (S & O) - South Jordan
              DinoTri (S & O) - Vernal
Jul 8:   Echo (S & O) - Coalville
Jul 15:  Toughman Utah Half

Rock Cliff OLYMPIC

Rock Cliff SPRINT

Friday, June 16, 2017

Rock Cliff Start List

Below is a preliminary look at the Rock Cliff start list. Of course you can't put a lot of stock in the self-projected times, but hey, it's kinda fun to sort it that way.

Rock Cliff Olympic

Rock Cliff Sprint

“It is not the critic who counts; not the wo/man who points out how the strong wo/man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the wo/man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends her/himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if s/he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that her/his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.” - Theodore Roosevelt

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Recon Mission: Daybreak Course Preview

Time for another recon mission! Special thanks to Utah Tri Buzz contributor Christopher White for shooting this footage of USTriSports' Daybreak Triathlon, taking place June 24th.

Daybreak was voted a Top 10 Utah Race and is considered one of the coolest venues on the local calendar.

This preview isn't affiliated with USTriSports, so our bad if something isn't perfect.

Check out the course video below, and please share with friends/family who may consider this fun event in the heart of the Salt Lake valley.

Main site: USTriSports

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Rock Cliff Preview!

Another week, another great local race! Rock Cliff is a PEOPLE'S VOTE: TOP 10 UTAH RACE taking place this Saturday. As we've done with East Canyon and several others, we reached out to a couple experts to get some insight on the course & race in general.

Only a couple days left to claim a spot, so go grab one if it sounds like a good time!

Tyson Alexander

While we all may be focused on the elevation gain, the exact route, and making sure we don’t miss a turn so we can be as fast as possible - if there was ever a race to just do for pure enjoyment – Rock Cliff might be it. Located near the beautiful Jordanelle reservoir and surrounded by nature, this race is as much a tour as it is a race.


This is a two transition event, with very limited parking at either transition area. If you are driving, you’ll need give yourself enough time to park in Francis and ride your bike to the transition areas. This bike from the parking lot in Francis to T2 is an easy 3.85 mile ride that is downhill. You can either wake up your legs, or coast right in to the transition areas.

You’ll set up T2 (which is a grass field on the west side of the Rock Cliff campground/nature park) complete with a permanent restroom structure.

From T2, you’ll walk down to the boat ramp and swim start to T1 (distance of about .5 miles). Here you’ll have a great view of the Jordanelle reservoir and be able to mentally prepare for the clever onslaught of inspiration that Aaron Shamy will treat you with. Please don’t miss this part – it is a highlight of any RaceTri event.


The water will be amazing. It will also refreshing and brisk, and we all know that those are just fancy words for cold – but you honestly cannot beat the idea of an open water swim in one of the most amazing reservoirs in Utah, surrounded by green hills and mountains. While you are attempting to keep your tempo just right – please take a moment to realize how lucky we all are to live and play in such a fantastic place.

The swim is a 3 point loop and sprint races will do one loop and Olympic racers will do 2 loops.

At the swim exit, there is a short climb up the ramp into T1.


Regardless of whether you do the sprint course or the olympic course, the first half will be a steady, low grade uphill climb on Hwy 35 which happens to be a spectacular view. After the turnaround, the second half of the bike will be a speedy descent back into the state park/T2 with a tour of the town of Francis mixed in. Be sure to thank the local law enforcement that will be on the course making sure that all of the participants have a safe day.


Off the bike, you will be treated with a fun and unique run course through the Rock Cliff Nature Center and Interpretive Trail. Dirt trails, bridged boardwalks, and one stretch of highway will be the path for your 5k or 10k run with nature. You will run through an active ecology featuring over 100 different species of birds and fish located in this area. If you aren’t too concerned with a PR, you could stop at the various signs throughout the park and learn a fact or two about the American White Pelican or the Double-Crested Cormorant - and that’s to say nothing of the Northern Goshawk.  (editor’s note: I kept hollering ahead at Tyson to stop and educate himself on the Northern Goshawk at last year's race, but he DID NOT OBLIGE, beating me by 16 seconds).

Here's a look at this year's run course, which per our understanding has been altered slightly due to Mother Nature:


This finish area may be one of the best local spots of all. If you didn’t know better, you might look around during the awards ceremony and wonder if you are actually at your annual family reunion. Giant cottonwoods and the lack of parking lots, cars, stores, or civilization will help you appreciate what a great race Rock Cliff is.

There is enough space here for a vehicle to come pick you up at the finish/T2 – or you can ride your bike 3.85 miles back to Francis where you parked.  


Mandy Oscarson

I'll always have a soft spot for Rock Cliff - it's the race that almost broke me in 2013, and is the race I qualified for USAT Nationals at in 2015. This will be my 5th year doing Rock Cliff, and I love it!

It's almost always chilly before this race, so wear layers to keep warm pre-race. Also make sure you have a bag that will be easy to ride to the two transition areas with, since most people park at the nearby town and T1 and T2 are in different locations. And don't forget your ID in your car!

The swim tends to be cold - with a river feeding it, Jordanelle Reservoir is cold even in July and August. My tested and approved technique for overcoming this is to put your face in the water and blow bubbles a few times before your wave starts - until the shock of having your face in the cold water wears off. This will help you have a much smoother swim start and will prevent you from hyperventilating and/or choking during the first 200 meters. One year I did it, my face felt frozen until the first buoy. If it is cold, just keep reminding yourself that the swim is the shortest part of the race - just go slow and steady and you'll warm up and be out of the water before you know it!

The bike is deceptively challenging. The way out is mostly a false flat. If you're doing the Olympic, you start wondering where the heck that turnaround is, checking your brakes periodically for technical problems. My mantra for bike courses like this is - this hill won't last forever! And indeed, the way back is super fast. As a friend once advised me, just relax into the downhills and enjoy it!

This run in one of my favorites in a tri (other than Spudman). You get a mix of everything - road, dirt trail, beautiful scenery, and uphill/downhill. I love catching glimpses of the river, which always takes my mind off of fatigue or pain.

Most (not all) age groups tend to have a small field for this race, so if you're trying to qualify for Nationals, this is a good one to go for it. Good luck and I'll see you out there!

Next several on the local calendar to consider!

Jun 24: Daybreak (S & O) - South Jordan
DinoTri (S & O) - Vernal
Jul 8:   
Echo (S & O) - Coalville
Jul 15:
Topaz (S & O) - Delta

Jul 15: Toughman Utah Half
Jul 15: San Rafael Classic Triathlon - Huntington

Results Breakdown: East Canyon 2017

Congrats to all who got out and raced at East Canyon!

This post has more detail behind the results breakdown methodology if you're interested.

Along with other Utah races, we'll use these results towards SWAG ANNOUNCEMENT 2017Remember we take the average of your 3 best local races (overall %) for "Most Improved Triathlete" awards, rankings, etc, so plan your season accordingly!

The next few qualifying races on the Utah calendar are:  

Jun 17:  RockCliff (S & O) - Francis
Jun 24:  Daybreak (S & O) - South Jordan
              DinoTri (S & O) - Vernal
Jul 8:   Echo (S & O) - Coalville
Jul 15:  Toughman Utah Half

East Canyon OLYMPIC

(FYI the source file didn't split T1 & T2 so we had to back into combined transitions)

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East Canyon SPRINT

(FYI the source file didn't split T1 & T2 so we had to back into combined transitions)

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