I just got back from Davis and besides being a little sun burnt I feel really good about my races. My times weren’t spectacular by any stretch of the imagination but they were respectable. (All the results are now online, you can see them here) Now that I have some real times for short course meters it will make it easier for me to sign up for the UCLA meet later this month.

I drove up to Davis Saturday morning and was at my brother’s place around 3 in the afternoon. The original plan was to save a few bucks and stay at his place. Once I got there I realized that wasn’t really the answer. His room was a stainless steel toilet away from being a prison cell. He offered up a gross couch in a common room… this wasn’t going to work out. I in turn hit up my old friends over at Expedia instead. The Best Western was totally worth the $100 bucks instead of getting some kind of mite from a questionable couch. After I checked in I went and explored all 4 blocks of downtown Davis. The thing I like best about Davis is the full acceptance of bikes as an actual form of transportation. There were bikes, bike lanes and bike racks everywhere. I wish I could get some of that action around here!

Anyways back to the action… after an unintentional tour of the Campus I found the pool. It’s really nice compared to what I’m used to. My one big complaint: no friggin shade anywhere. Davis is hot and sunny and the pool and pool deck are reflective so there is no escape if you’re there on a sunny day like, you know, today. Shit. I look like Hank Hill with my shirt off because I swim indoors so I was pretty worried about this whole sunshine thing. It felt about 85 degrees and I was out there in a sweatshirt with my hood up trying to not burn the crap out of myself… it didn’t work. Luckily I didn’t really start feeling it until hour 4 of my drive home, tomorrow is going to be awful.

The races went really fast which was nice. There were about 9 heats per event for the women and 10 for the men and they still managed to jam through 5 events in 3 hours. My main worry was starts from the blocks because I don’t have any to practice with. But once I did my first one I got over it really quickly. My starts were solid and my goggles didn’t leak on me. Turns out riding 50-60 miles a week helps with jumping :) My butterfly was good, back and breast were a little not so good but decent, and my free and IM were really good for me. I still have a lot of time to shave off my times but it’s a start. My 100IM in particular went really well. I pulled out to an early lead in the Butterfly leg and managed to hold off everyone else for the last 75. I got a little prize for winning my heat, a UC Davis swim cap, not particularly useful for a bald guy… but hey I like free stuff so it was cool. Plus I just like feeling like I won something.

Here’s my times for the five events:

50m Fly: 31.65
50m Back: 38.10
50m Breast: 39.37
50m Free: 30.86
100 IM: 1:17

Overall I finished in the middle of my age group. Everything except my backstroke was below my seed time guesses. I’d like to get my fly and free times under 30 by the end of the year. I’m going to have to put some more work into my backstroke, I used to be a decent backstroker back in the day. Ultimately it looks like fly is still going to be my non-freestyle goto event. Not sure when I want to get brave and try to race a 100 though. I really like doing the IM too. Not sure if I’m ready to race a 200 IM but the 100 is shaping up to be a new favorite event.

Ultimately I met my swimming goals (good fly and free, avoid embarrassing myself in the other events) and I got my just rewards… sweet, sweet, wonderful waffle fries… oh how I’ve missed you.

isn’t it beautiful?

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