Race Preview: Lake George
The NECTC hits its third state in as many weeks, this time visiting New York for the Lake George Triathlon Festival. The olympic race at Lake George has become a staple of the NECTC schedule and one of the most popular races among our athletes. Lake George is nicknamed the Queen of American Lakes, is over 32 miles long, and drains into its northern partner, Lake Champlain.
The swim course at Lake George goes off from a small beach. Athletes will swim in a counter-clockwise out and back loop. The water is typically relatively warm and wetsuit legal. At the time the race goes off athletes can expect flat and calm waters.
The bike course is a single loop courese with a few hills, decents, rollers and flats. In the past racers have had some pretty fast bike splits as the roads are in great condition for racing.
Finally, the run course is a two loop course with rolling terrain, as you can see below.
Lake Geroge brings out another competitive field, including winners from both Cranberry and Challenge Maine. There will be over 65 males and 45 females competeing, and 14 universities.
Male Race Favorites:
The male race sees a rematch between Spencer Ralston (St. Michael's) and Dylan Morgan (West Point) who dueled at Cranberry with Ralston edging out Morgan by only 7 seconds. This time around we are racing an olympic and not a sprint, so it will be interesting to see how the two fair with the change.
Spencer Ralston (St. Michael's): Winner at Cranberry. Ralston will need to put some time into Morgan in the swim and bike if he wants to be successful and hold off Morgan's impressive run leg.
Dylan Morgan (West Point): the ture story here is if the Olympic distance race will favor Morgan because of the lengthened run portion, or if it will put him in too deep of a hole before the run even starts.
Honorable Mentions: Andrew Keenan (Drexel)
Female Race Favorites:
It's hard to go against those BU ladies who won the female team championship last year, especially since they followed it up last week with a podium sweep. However, Columbia's Taylor Fogg jumps into the mix this week in her first race of the season, Angelica Dickson and the West Point ladies are back, and Drexel's standout Meghan Smith will be toeing the line. This really is a stacked field. It will be intersting to see how the change in distance will effect the Dickson vs Smith battle from Cranberry.
Angelica Dickson (West Point): Our second place overall female last year and winner at Cranberry this year. Dickson has started off the season right where she left off, at the top.
Taylor Fogg (Columbia): Fogg finished 3rd overall in the conference last year and was nipping at the heels of Dickson in the conference championship. This is Fogg's first race of the season and it will be interesting to see if she is ready to close the gap.
Meghan Smith (Drexel): Well this lady threw off my predictions at Cranberry by coming out of left field; not so fast this time around. Smith led Dickson at Cranberry out of the swim, and went into the run nearly tied. Although Dickson was able to finish slightly ahead, you never know how doubling the distance will effect things. It will also be intriguing to see how she fairs against Fogg.
Catherine Sedy (West Point): She finished just about a minute back at Cranberry so it is hard to take her off this list. With this stacked field a podium would be a solid result, a win would be surprising, but not out of the question as she is the strongest biker of the group.
The BIG 3 (Boston University): I think this is their official name now, at least for me. (Natalie Tukan, Ellen Witkowski and Stephanie Lie) This was their order on last week's podium and I have a hard time changing it, although Witkowski was quite close to Tukan last week. The real question is whether one (or more) of these ladies will be able to crack a podium at such a stacked race.
Female Team Favorites:
The BIG 3 (referenced above) are going to be tough to beat. Even if none of them get on the podium, they are one of the deepest teams racing. West Point has a chance, but is really going to come down to the performance of their 3rd, and 4th finishing ladies.
Male Team Favorites:
West Point is my favorite. Their team's top 4 is pretty strong. I think it will be Drexel, Coast Guard and UConn fighting for the remaining two podium spots, and it is a tough one to call. Should be really interesting to see a repeat of last week's battle between UConn and Coast Guard, but one of these 3 teams will not be on the podium.