The day of the race, I somehow managed to get myself out of bed at 3:30am and we left the hotel around 4:15am. After driving past it the first time, we circled the block and made it into the designated parking area. (There’s always at least one wrong turn every trip.) Thank goodness we didn’t have to pay for parking this time. Then we walked across the street to the transition area set up in one of the Disneyland parking lots.
The first task for the day was getting body marked. I guess this is quite important for triathlons, but they were pretty casual about it for the duathlon. As you’ll see later on in the photos, I had to have my race number written on my arm and leg. The volunteer forgot what she was doing and wrote the wrong number on my leg, then scratched it out and started over. Thankfully I was able to rub it off with a wet towel. So much for permanent marker.
Then I headed into the transition area. Only participants were allowed so Troy had to hang out on the other side of the fence and wait for me. The bike racks were labeled by number groups and the one I was assigned to was the third from the back on the right. (I committed this to memory so that I wouldn’t have any trouble finding my bike later.) Since I was just wearing one pair of shoes for the entire race, I didn’t have a whole lot to do to get set up. That meant we had plenty of time for taking photos! That’s my bike – number 407 – and my stuff on the red towel.
The coolest part of the race for me was that it started right in the middle of Main Street. All of the races I’ve done at WDW have started outside the parks. Despite all the participants, it was still a lot less crowded than on a typical day at the parks. I took full advantage of the opportunity and made Troy take a ton of photos of me to commemorate the day. It was especially nice that they allowed spectators to come into the park with us rather than making them wait outside the gates.
Of course I had to have a photo in front of the castle. I would have liked to go closer, but I was already past the start line and getting strange looks.
Then I went to my starting corral, and Troy went to find a spot up front near the starting line. Just before the start of the race, Minnie Mouse made a special guest appearance! Other than running through the parks, this was the only Disney-related element of the event.
The race started promptly at 6am. They brought each corral up to the starting line one at a time for a short pep talk, which I could have done without. But I thought it was a nice touch to have a confetti send off for each wave instead of just the first. By the time I made it up to the front in corral 4, the ground was covered with little bits of paper. Usually I don’t start so far up front in a race, but I wanted to make sure Troy saw me.