2014 Illicito - Wind and drag are your biggest competitors on race day, but we've outsmarted them with a new weapon. The Illicito takes QR's game-changing SHIFT Technology to a new level by removing the left-side seat stay. Simply put, at the most drag-heavy yaw angles of the wind tunnel, the Illicito records the lowest drag coefficient of any modern design. Period.
1987: The Wetsuit
The Chronicles of Turbeau Curbeau
Matt, can you tell us a little about yourself?
I grew up playing traditional team sports like Football, Basketball and Baseball. I played baseball into my college years and when that was over I spent most of my time in the weight room. After college I began work in Public Accounting where I worked for PricewaterhouseCoopers and earned my license as a Certified Public Accountant. After 4 years in the Corporate World I decided to take a chance on a different life path and give the sport of triathlon my full attention. I moved out to Portland, Oregon where I lived with my Brother and his family. In Portland I made friends with the great guys at Athletes Lounge who gave me a job and became my training buddies. I had a great 8 months out on the West Coast but came back East when my brother left Portland to begin is Residency as a OBGYN in Asheville, NC. Once back East things in triathlon kept rolling and ultimately led me to Boston, MA. Tim and Cait Snow of Brockton, MA have graciously welcomed me into their home and I currently reside in the basement of their house. I work with Brian Hughes at Fast Splits Multisport in Newton, MA as well as Coach with QT2 Systems. All in all life is good and I am loving where I am at!
Fitter and Faster With Devon Palmer
Haley Chura: The Happiest Person On The Start Line
Growing up, I always knew I would be a triathlete. My parents competed in the Bud Lite triathlon series during the 1980s and my first newspaper feature was a picture of me in my 'racing stroller' at the 1988 Lilac Bloomsday Run in Spokane, Washington. My parents competed in triathlons, road races, trail races, and they even went open water swimming. As a kid, I truly believed those were the kinds of things all grown ups did.
When did you start doing triathlon?
After graduating and wrapping up my college swimming career at the University of Georgia in 2007, I took a job at an accounting firm in Atlanta. Within my first month, the firm's Managing Partner convinced me to run a marathon with him. I beat him by a minute. Luckily, instead of firing me, he decided our rematch should be a local half Ironman. The race was only a month before the 2008 Olympic Swim Trials and I think I trained more miles in the pool than on either the bike or run. I destroyed the swim field then watched nearly every person in the race pass me on the bike and run! The only person who didn't catch me was my boss, so at least I was still a winner around the office!
After that race my good friend Betty Janelle convinced me triathlon would be much less painful if I trained for the bike and run. With Betty's guidance I hired Matthew Rose as my coach, joined the newly formed Dynamo Multisport team, and set out to do my first Ironman in 2009.
Why did you start doing triathlon?
I was happily retired from swimming for about 30 minutes before I missed it and knew I needed to do
something else. I felt I had reached my potential in swimming, but running and biking gave me new opportunities to grow. The distances and destinations of triathlon appealed to me, plus once I started meeting people I was hooked. It's a very happy and healthy community and I love being a part of it.
What have been some of your favorite races so far?
Hawaii will probably always be my favorite race. There's so much tradition on that course and Kona is just a magical place. My first pro win was at the 2013 Ironman 70.3 New Orleans. Just two weeks before the race I left my accounting job to pursue triathlon full-time, so breaking the tape in Louis Armstrong Park was really emotional! I also love Ironman Brasil. That race feels like a laid back version of Hawaii. Floripa is a gorgeous race venue and I thought everyone in Brasil was super nice. I also made some really great friends on that trip.
What keeps you motivated?
Being relatively new to the pro ranks, I learn something every time I race. I love being able to celebrate small victories in both training and racing, but still know there's so much room for improvement. I've also met some ridiculously great people through this sport and I being around good people makes me really happy.
What races do you have planned for this year?
I'm planning to kick off my year at Ironman Los Cabos at the end of March. After that I'll likely race Ironman 70.3 New Orleans in April, then Ironman 70.3 St. Croix and Ironman Brasil in May. After Brasil I'll probably evaluate the first half of the year and from there, I'll make a plan of attack for the second.
You were part of an NCAA national champion swim team and swam at the Olympic trials, you have several IM swim course records and in 2013 you were the first professional woman out of the water at Kona; how does that affect your race strategy?
I think it means I'm the happiest person on the start line! My swim background gives me a lot of confidence, and not only for the swim portion of the race. I've had the honor of training with some of the best athletes and coaches in the world and everything they taught me continues to carry me through races today. I know what it takes to win in the pool, and I don't believe open water and the open road are too different.
What does a typical day in the life of Haley Chura look like?
A normal day probably starts with lots of laughter and laps in the pool. I swim with the Dynamo Masters swim team and the group camaraderie makes every workout pure joy. After that I might hit the trainer or the road, depending on the time of year and duration/intensity of my bike workout. I do a lot of my running off the bike, so whether I have a 15 minute or 15 mile run, you can be sure my running shoes are nearby.
Is there anything else that you'd like to share?
My parents have taken a bit of a break from triathlon in recent years, but last week I got a very interesting text message from my mom that read, 'I want to buy a Qunitana Roo.' I think 2014 could be a big triathlon year for the whole Chura family!
Be sure to check out haleychura.com, and don't forget to follow @haleychura on Twitter!
Training Update With Peter HurleyPeter, the last time we talked was right before your race at HITS Naples. How did it go?
Well, it was a very tough swim. In fact, a man died of cardiac arrest. The water was very rough. My wife, Lorraine, had a PR, with a good bike and a fantastic run. I had my worst swim. I am working on overcoming hyperventilation in the first 200 yards of open water swims. The choppy water interrupted my usual routine of dealing with that hyperventilation. Made up some time on the bike, but had to wait four minutes to use the restroom. I had an average run. You will note that I actually finished 6th, as the individual listed ahead of me in the results did not finish the swim. Overall, it was a positive experience, shook out some cobwebs and let me know where I need to focus my training.
The expo was well attended and we had our tech rep, Diego Ruiz, assisting us during the weekend. I almost forget to mention that Diego took first place in his age-group in the Sprint at Naples.
What are you doing to work on your swim? That sounds like a problem; how will that affect your race at Ironman Florida?
Ever since I started doing triathlon, I have struggled with hyperventilating on the swim. It's something that I have been trying to work through for years; right now I am doing Masters Swimming a couple of times a week, and I am working specifically with a swim coach to try to address this issue. It's a funny thing; I grew up in Massachusetts and spent a lot of time on the coast, but for some reason, come race day, I hyperventilate during the swim. The race at Naples really pointed out that this could be a big problem for the swim at Ironman Florida, so my coaches and I decided to switch to Ironman Chattanooga. By doing a race that is in my backyard, I'll be able to train in the same river that will be in the race, and we'll be better able to do simulate race conditions in our workouts.
How has your training gone since Naples? Your next race is the Husky Long Course race in Australia- what have you doing to prepare for that?
Well, the weather here hasn't been very good, and as a result, I've missed a lot of training. Last weekend my wife and I decided to get away from this weather, and we were able to sneak down to St. Petersburg for a long weekend of training. This was the last 'big' weekend of training before starting my taper, and my wife and I were able to get over eight hours of training in. So that was nice. My volume has been about 11 hours for the past few weeks, and next week as I travel down to Australia we'll drop it down to about six hours. At this point, the Husky race is a 'B' race, with my 'A' race being Galveston 70.3 in April.
What is your travel schedule going to look like? Are you just going to Australia?
I'm leaving next Monday, the 17th. I'm supposed to arrive in Australia on Wednesday, the 19th. That will give me a few days to recover and do some work with our Australian dealer, Pedals Plus, before my race on the 23rd. After that, I'll be going around to meet with our dealers and suppliers: I'll be going to Cebu to meet with YKK, then off to Seoul to meet with Cephas, then over to the Taipei Bike Show, where I'll meet up with Steve Dunn. After that I'll be heading to Hong Kong to meet with Wung Pang, and then I'll make a quick stop in San Francisco to see my son. All told, this trip will be about 17 days.
Peter, how do you train during a trip like this? Besides the fact that there is about a 16 hour time zone difference, how do you find places to swim/bike/run?
One thing I've learned with the time zones is that you just have to do your best. I'll use some sleeping pills on the plane, but that doesn't always work. You never really get used to it, and I'm never able to sleep more than four hours at a time. You just try to take as many naps as possible throughout the day. As for finding places to train, I use the Poolfinder at swimming.org to find pools near where I am staying. Because most of my trips are to meet with our dealers, I can usually borrow a bike from them and bring my own shoes and pedals. And you can always find a place to run. Just like with sleep, it's a matter of doing the best you can.
I should mention how hard it is to pack for a trip like this. I'll be leaving 45 degree weather and arriving in 85 degree weather in Australia. Then it'll be 95 degrees in Cebu, then 35 in Seoul, then 75 in Taipei and Hong Kong, 65 in San Francisco, then back to 45 degrees. It's hard to prepare the body for that.
Josh West and His Shantae RooMeet Josh West, "just a dude" who named his bike Shantae' Roo.
Josh how is triathlon 'Personal' for you?
I wish I had a more exotic story to tell here, but I'm just a dude. This interview may turn out to be a creative low-light for the Quintana Roo Blog. I like black coffee and burritos, and I hope others would say that I promote a 'green' lifestyle, encouraging sustainability through efforts to reuse and conserve.
My relationship with the sport of triathlon is 'personal' because for me it serves as a platform for self discovery. I've found that the hours I spend learning to become comfortable with uncomfortably hard training efforts serve me well in other aspects of life. After grinding out the training required for Ironman, I've learned not to sweat the small stuff. I can't think of anything better than a long solo bike ride for thinking my way through whatever life throws my direction.
When did you start doing triathlon?
I did my first sprint triathlon in 2006, on a borrowed mountain bike. As is a common first experience among those of us lucky enough to stumble into this sport, I was heavy on enthusiasm but pretty light on understanding. I had bike gloves but forgot to bring any fluids. I swam with my race number pinned to my tank top. I loved every frantic minute of it.
Why did you start doing triathlon?
I was fresh out of college, and was looking for a positive outlet for my time. I'd done a pretty good job of drinking beer, staying out late, and eating pizzas at 2am while an undergrad at the University of Florida (Go Gators!), and I was in serious need of a lifestyle change. I grew up as a surfer bum on the gulf coast of Florida just a few miles north of St. Petersburg, where the world famous St. Anthony's Triathlon is held. I had a loose concept of what a triathlon was from reading the local newspaper's coverage of the race, and these triathlete characters I would read about held this sort of exotic mystique for me. I didn't have a background in any of the three sports, but I had this notion that triathletes were the fittest of the fit, and I wanted to have a crack at it.
What have been some of your best/favorite races so far?
Let's go with favorites. My wife Leigh and I moved to Chapel Hill, North Carolina 3 years ago, and I'm really proud of the triathlon scene in the Old North State. In 2013 I raced Ironman 70.3 Raleigh and the Beach2Battleship iron distance triathlon, and thought both races were incredible. Both of these events are on my calendar again this year, hopefully working my way up the podium in 2014.
What keeps you motivated?
Simon Whitfield calls it 'The relentless pursuit of athletic excellence.' I'm not sure the athletic excellence in the context Simon refers to is in my future, but I am driven by a desire to see what I can achieve in triathlon. No one will ever accuse me of being a gifted athlete, and in fact I'm not even the most talented person who shares my bathroom.
I didn't start swimming, biking, or running until I was in my 20's, but this sport rewards long term consistency, and I remind myself of that every single day. I'm lucky enough to have a wife and a few local supporters who seem invested in my pursuits, and that makes it just a little easier to get out the door on a cold morning for a swim. Additionally the health benefits and friendships I've fostered over the years through training and racing some days feel like a fringe benefit, but other days they feel like the whole point.
What races do you have planned for this year?
My coach and I are taking the approach of quality over quantity this year. In May I'll race the USAT Long Course Duathlon National Championships. June will bring Ironman 70.3 Raleigh and Ironman Coeur d'Alene. After recovering well from CDA I'll race some of the great local events put on by FS Series and Jones Racing Company before gearing up for the Beach 2 Battleship Iron Distance race
again in October.
What can you tell us about Tailwind Coaching Concepts?
Tailwind Coaching Concepts is an endurance coaching service focused on the needs of age group runners and triathletes. Based in North Carolina, Tailwind provides both one-on-one and online training programs, as well as sport specific analysis and testing. Tailwind Coaching is a natural extension of my professional interests. I'm an Exercise Physiologist by trade, and I've been fortunate enough to apply this through work experience in college athletics, academic research, and currently in a hospital system setting. This fledgling company wasn't created to take over the world of endurance sports coaching, but rather to help a small number of people to become stronger, more confident athletes through promotion of sound training principals.
You founded it in 2012- what motivated you to do that?
It's been a goal of mine for years, and I'm now coming into a place in my life where I feel like I've gained a skill set and enough specific experience that will allow me to help others. While in grad school I was running with the women's cross country team, and getting dropped on a daily basis. The head coach was a wonderful mentor to me and eventually found a place for me as a graduate assistant.
Outside of some of the specific coursework that led me to Masters Degree in Exercise Physiology, I look to that experience as having the greatest positive impact on my professional career. It's a pretty powerful thing to put your trust in someone to help you reach an uncertain goal, and while I feel like some age group coaches take that trust for granted, a remind myself often of the responsibility others place in Tailwind Coaching.
How do you balance coaching with your training?
In terms of coaching, I keep things small. At any given time I have a group of 5-7 athletes of varying age and ability level. This allows me to have meaningful contact with each athlete on a daily/weekly basis. Since neither racing nor coaching can currently pay for my groceries, I work as an Exercise Physiologist for the University of North Carolina Hospital System.
Any training tips?
This isn't an original concept, but I think it's one of the most important lessons an endurance athlete can learn: Keep things simple, train hard, and be consistent with what you do.
So, you've named your bike 'Shantae' Roo.' That needs a little bit of explanation…
Right. I guess I posted that on social media, so I'd better own up to it. Shantae is my gorgeous Quintana Roo CD.01. Last year I decided that if I was going to be serious about training, it was time I got serious about the tools I used to help me train. She's the first bike I've ever owned that in some way wasn't a hand-me-down, bought solely because she provides me with the best combination of fit and performance.
As far as how she came to be called Shantae…Maybe I'm grasping for deeper meaning when there really might not be any substance there, but I guess Shantae Roo would be my alter ego- an embodiment of what I'm not. I'm a quiet, mellow dude who gets lost in a room, admittedly rather unathletic and in serious need of a tan. Shantae Roo is sleek and a little cocky. She has a taste for the finer things in life like Quarq power meters and carbon bottle cages. She has clean lines and just exudes faaaaast.
Is there anything else that you'd like to share?
This is where the 'pro' athletes usually take time to give a shout out to their supporters, and while I'm far from being a pro, I do have some people to thank for making my pursuits both viable and rewarding. My wife and my mother are both accomplished athletes, providing inspiration and support that I will never be able to adequately thank them for. My coach, Dave Williams, is one of the brightest and most passionate people I've met. Inside Out Sports is one of the best Triathlon stores in the country, and Cid and his staff have been an incredible resource for me. Fleet Feet Sports in Carrboro is trying to change the world through running, and I'm happy to be a part of what they are doing. Lastly, the Happy Tooth Dental Group has been giving back to the endurance community for years, and I'd like to tip my cap to Dr. Moray and his colleagues for their long time support of the North Carolina endurance community.
You can follow Josh West on Twitter @west_josh and Tailwind Coaching @TailwindCoach