I had a pretty good race in Subic despite encountering some rough patches on the day. I had a bit of bad luck on the bike after a few rough sections past the u-turn point - my front bottle cage came loose and I dropped my bottle! I had actually just skipped grabbing a bottle at an aid station, as I thought I still had a full one left, and didn't want to carry any more 'extra weight.' You can trust that I was mentally kicking myself for riding at km 50 with zero bottles and no idea where the next aid station would be.
After about 25 minutes of riding without hydration, I was starting to panic. Filipino elites Joseph Miller and John Philip Duenas passed me at that point, and out of desperation I accelerated and rode up to John and begged a bottle off him (he had three). He handed me a bottle filled about a quarter full with water. I was disappointed, but beggars can't be choosers. Towards the end of the course there were two more aid stations, but both handed small water bottles (no squeezy type bike bottles). I was already feeling hungry and my eyelids were starting to droop at this point, but I just told myself to try and keep Joseph in sight, and I'd get to T2 where there would be gels and sports drinks. Normally I eat four GU gels for 90-km, but on some days, in some conditions, I guess you just need to eat more.
Note to self: Carrying an extra gel won't hurt, and skipping hydration stations on hot days is a big NO-NO.
You could tell that the guys behind the event are experienced triathletes themselves - the attention to detail was very impressive. Lots of giveaways, prizes, and FOOD pre and post race! And the support from Mayor Ortega and the local government of the city of San Fernando was in full force. Shoutout to all the volunteers and policemen who manned the busy streets for us that morning.
Special thank you's to JB and Jonathan from Tri Union, who took such great care of us over the weekend. We really enjoyed our time with you and all the triathletes from up North. We hope you continue to grow the sport in La Union!