My wife Melissa finished the Danskin triathlon yesterday. I had the opportunity to support her and be her own personal sherpa. She wore the old school original white Trifuel top which I let her use for the day.
We arrived early, and got her gear over to transition. She went into the transition area, racked the bike and set up her area.
The swim waves started right on time a 7am. I gave Melissa a good luck kiss and she went to wait for her swim wave, number 20. I was able to get a good position to view the swim.
Her wave came and off she went. Melissa was a swimmer and water polo player in the past so she was comfortable with the open water. She came out and ran to the transition area.
I followed along and got in position to see her off as she left on the bike. She got out of T1 pretty quickly and I was able to catch her eye, get a picture and cheer her on with the cow bell in a span of just a few seconds. Then she was off.
I ran back to the car to drop off the clothes she wore before the swim. I ran back and got in position about a hundred yards away from transition to see her come back.
I guesstimated her time and was waiting for her return so I could cheer her on again.
I heard one of the competitors yell to a volunteer that a cyclist was down and to get medical. A minute later another person yell over that number 1806 was down. That was Melissa number.
I ran back down the course, and my cell phone started ringing. It was not a number I had on caller ID but considering the circumstances I answered the call. The woman on the other end asked if this was Scott and that Melissa crashed on the bike. She told me where she was and I was there a few moments later.
My heart was in my throat as I saw the bike leaning on a fire hydrant and Melissa was laying on the ground. I felt a little better as I got closer and could see she was moving.
The woman who called told me she had somebody go get medical.
Melissa was a bit scraped up and her right knee was very swollen and bleeding a little.
Surprisingly she didn't look as bad as I feared but she was hurting. She was able to sit up and calm down a little but she was still crying from the pain in her knee. She apologized about the bike and I told her not to be worried about it.
While she was catching her breath I moved the bike and I could see the front rim was bent and the right pedal was stuck into the dirt next to the fire hydrant.
Apparently what I was able to piece together from what she told me was that the last mile was tight and she was trying to stay right(we reviewed the USAT rules of course) and let others pass. It seems more than 1 person was trying to pass her at a time in the one lane of road everyone had to share. She ran out of room and the pedal might have hit the dirt over over the curb and the front wheel hit the curb, which were near the fire hydrant. It looks like she came to a dead stop, banged her knee on the unforgiving fire hydrant and went over the handlebars. Fortunately her momentum took her onto the grass next to the road.
The bike was now unrideable. I asked if she wanted to continue and she did. I gave her the bike to push and we moved way off to the other side of the course to stay out of the way. I walked with her to make sure she was okay. She limped along and pushed the bike the final mile into transition.
The race officials allowed me to go with her to make sure she was okay. She changed
into her running gear and slowly work her way out of T2 for the last leg. It was difficult to find medical assistance and I was able to get and anti-bacterial wipe from a volunteer area and clean up her leg. The medical tent was near the finish and she did not want to go off course to get checked. It was a sprint and only 3 miles remained so she decided to walk for now and see what happens.
I stayed with her on the edge of the course to make sure she was okay and keep up her spirits. It was difficult(to say the least) to see her limping along and crying from the pain, but she kept plugging along.
I kept with her for a little over 2 miles and then let her finish while I ran the short cut over to the finish.
I got there in time to get the camera and cowbell ready. I saw her in the distance and she was running slowly with an odd limping gate but she was finishing strong. I yelled, rang the cowbell, and even got a few pictures as Melissa was able to finish despite her injured knee.
I was so proud of my wife, she was awesome!
Of course we got her over to the med tent and they were able to bandage her up.
I played the part of a good sherpa/husband and gathered her gear from transition. I packed up the car and drove her home.
Post race - I cleaned up the wife and got her lounging on the couch with her leg elevated and iced up.
Today we went to the doctor and got some xrays and we are waiting for the results.