I had something happen to me today that has never happened to me before, I had a flat tire during a race. I have completed over 30 triathlons and 15 bike races and events, and never had a flat during the race or event. I have had flats during training, before the race or event, or after the race or event, never during. The first time I had a flat before a big race, I was running late when I got to the event. It was a Friday night; it was the first race of a four race stage triathlon, the American Triple T. I had to change it three times before I managed to get it on and inflated, and this was before I got my bike down to T1 and racked.
The reason I am writing is to remind everyone to stay as calm as possible when something goes wrong. A friend I follow on Facebook has a saying, “slow is smooth, smooth is fast”. When you get in a rush and allow your nerves to take control, you cannot really accomplish your task very well. I have watched numerous people changing tires on the roadside during races and events. The ones who look like they are moving slowly and methodically seem to always be in control, and finish the task quicker than the athlete who is rushing, over inflating the tires, not getting the CO2 cartridge, on the stem properly letting all the gases escape without inflating the tire, or throwing their bike and/or wheels across the ditch.
Try to remember the saying “Slow is smooth, smooth is fast”.