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So it seems my ninth season of racing will go out like a lamb, whimpering into winter instead of roaring like the hurricane that brought it to an abrupt end.

As Hurricane Joaquin made its way toward the Mid-Atlantic coast earlier this month, race organizers scrambled to make decisions in the best interest of everyone's safety and well-being. Ironman Maryland officials—wary of out-of-town travelers swelling local population numbers and hence, creating addition people to evacuate should it come to that—cancelled the race, asking athletes to stay home. The race was rescheduled for October 17 and, undoubtedly, has resulted in a frustrating and protracted taper for hundreds of triathletes.

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My last race of the season also was wiped out by Joaquin. On October 3rd, I'd planned to travel to Gunpowder State Park for the Baltimore Triathlon, a race that caught my attention when it debuted last year. Coming two weeks after the Savageman 70, it was intended to be an enjoyable end to another long season of training and racing. However, it was also my last opportunity this year to qualify for the 2016 USAT Nationals, an honor that, so far, has eluded me this season.

To be honest, I wasn't entirely disappointed that the race had, at first, been postponed. If you've ever raced in the pouring rain, with temperatures hovering in the upper 40s, you'll know what I mean. It's miserable. I was, however, crestfallen when the race could not be rescheduled due to insufficient safety personnel available on the proposed new date.

But I must give props to Elite Race Management for their timely and detailed communications regarding the status of the race, and for investigating every possible alternative for rescheduling the event. When that failed, race organizers offered a heartfelt apology along with the opportunity for participants to claim their race shirts and packets. In addition, Elite Race Management has extended a 50 percent discount on the 2016 race registration fee. Which is more than they had to do. So I will be there. I have no idea what's in store for my 2016 race season, but I do know I will be headed to the Baltimore Triathlon next October.

Perhaps it was serendipitous turn of events anyway. In my last taper ride before the Baltimore Triathlon I noticed that my bike seat was unusually low. When I tried to adjust it, I discovered that my frame was cracked; a condition that could potentially have been dangerous if, in a race scenario, my seat had suddenly dropped while riding. With the race just days away, I had devised a plan B to get me through the race, but it is probably just as well that I was not riding a jury-rigged bike. So instead of ending my season with a race, I am racing to get my bike rebuilt with a new frame in time to enjoy the last of the beautiful fall weather. Soon I will be relegated to the trainer for a few months of uninspiring indoor riding while I await the beginning of a new season.

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