Elise Winter and Kelsey Withrow both traveled East this week to compete at USAT Nationals in Wisconsin. Although Winter has qualified for USAT Nationals in the past, this is her first year racing this event. Withrow, a professional triathlete, will be racing in the Elite Super Sprint triathlon Saturday afternoon.
We checked in with both athletes for a quick pre-race Q&A!
What are you most looking forward to about racing at Nationals?
I am excited to be racing against some of the nation’s top age groupers in my age division. There are some fast athletes and it will be an honor to toe the line with them.
Have you had a chance to preview the course and if so are there any parts that you think will be a strength for you?
I drove the bike course today and plan to swim the swim course tomorrow. The bike is, for the most part, flat and straight. I’m looking forward to being down in the aero bars for almost all of it and just going hard. I heard the swim will have sight buoys every 100m. so with that, and some fast swimmers to draft off of in my wave, I’m hoping to have a good swim.
What is your goal for this event?
I would love to be top 20 I my age group, top 10 would be amazing.
Favorite Pre-race Meals:
Dinner the night before I have grilled chicken, brown rice, and a baked sweet potato.
Morning of I have a couple eggs from my chickens, coconut milk latte, and a piece Dave’s killer bread toasted with Justin’s maple almond butter. But having to improvise a little in Milwaukee since I didn’t bring my chickens.
Pre-race Rituals: No rituals, I just like to warmup with a short jog, a quick spin (if possible) and a swim. Usually listen to music while setting up transition.
Post Race Treat: That beer that has been looking at me for the last couple of weeks.
About 3 weeks ago you raced a Half IM and now you are about to race a super sprint. How did you mix up your training to get ready for short distance race?
For the past 2 weeks, I’ve been mimicking the intensity of the sprint course. Every few days I will do a mock super sprint race in the gym where I do most of my training. I start with rope slams to take place of the swim then hop on the trainer then run. I do a lot of intensity for my long distance training because I work and don’t have all the hours in the day to train.
The Super sprint race is a unique format that has you doing two rounds of swim/bike/run. Do you think this will played to your strength as an athlete?
I come from an ITU background so I am very familiar with that style of racing. I also race bikes so I love the crit format of the bike.
What are your goal(s) for this event?
I came here to win.
Pre-race meal: Pasta
Any pre-race or race day ritual: Lots and lots of coffee
Favorite post race treat? A very large beer(s)