Qr shop talk




QT2 camp in Florida recap by Pedro GomesBrad DeVaney fitting Pedro Gomes on his Quintana Roo PRsix

QT2 systems, a coaching group based out of Boston, MA with athletes all over the US and the World, promotes a winter training camp every year in February with all its professional athletes. Founder and head coach of QT2 , Jesse Kropelnicki, along a few other coaches work with these athletes daily. The camp was again held in Clermont, FL, lasted for 17 days and covered over 85 hours of swimming, biking, running and strength. Although the volume itself looks pretty high on paper, we actually had a bunch of days where we only swam meaning we also had others where we went really hardcore: out before sunrise and back after sunset. That's actually the number #1 training tip you will get if you ever embrace the QT2 philosophy: take the hard days EPIC HARD, the easy days EPIC EASY. Easier said than done, I'm know. 

While most triathletes present actually have their Elite/Pro card up to date, most actually don't just do triathlon. Some are moms and dads, others still have their full or part time desk job or have too many commitments at home that sometimes distract them of the little details about training. The main purpose of the camp is to actually separate these people from their routine and distractions. During those 17 days, coaches want us to not only train at our best but also nail every aspect of it such as nutrition, hydration and recovery. Either you were out on your Quintana Roo or on the couch in your Normatec boots, we were asked to be focused on training and not have external elements affect it. Obviously this' not always possible, even during a training camp but it's fairly easier when you are away from your home and know it's only for a short period of time.  

Every year new pro athletes join the squad and this' also the opportunity to be around other QT2 veteran athletes that share the same training philosophy, follow the same attention to detail and it will be the jump start for newcomers to become more at ease with the routine they need to set back at home.  

As in previous years, Brad DeVaney and Sam Voigt from American Bicycle Group made the trip down South from their home base in Chattanooga for the camp. During their stay we had the opportunity to connect with both and collect some data of our position on the CD0.1 and PRSix. Brad DeVaney has been fitting athletes for years and his expertise will reveal crucial on our comfort on top of these high tech bikes. While having a fast bike is important, comfort and aerodynamics of rider is something you as an athlete always have to adapt to your personal needs and body flexibility. Of all of things I've learned during their visit, I take two that are very important: you do want to be aggressive on the bike (low) but you don't want to be too low as it will affect your ability to push the pedals. The other thing that plays a huge roll in aerodynamics of a bike+rider, is the head position. Think of it as a tear drop, where the helmet opens the bubble so you want it to be as low as possible, without affecting ability to push pedals, and as leaned forward as possible. While in most cases it's easy to tweak this with only raising or lowering the paddings on your aerobar, on my case I was actually riding the pads at the right height and was only by opening them up (width of elbow position) that allowed my shoulders to relax, open up and lower the head. Out of curiosity, I use the Trimax Carbon aerobar from Vision and it comes with either R or J bends. In terms of aerodynamics, the J bends are better. Also, if you want to add water bottles to the bike, the priority should be the following: 1) in between aerobars; 2) down tube; 3) behind the seat. The seat tube is the last one you want to use. Small things that will save you seconds.

With all the training, recovery, fit sessions and talks, we did have time to actually know each other well. I've been with QT2 for three years now, I've seen a few small tweaks on training approach from Jesse from year to year but I honestly feel that this camp is always the base of our winter training, where we always all learned new things and become better athletes year after year. The video shows all the 'fun' we had. 

QT2 camp video

See you on the road,

Pedro Gomes

Bent Andersen is the World Champion 

Bent's Hawaii Ironman 2014 race report

2014 was my 14th Ironman in Hawaii. I have had some challenges during the last 2 years, but since July, I have been able to train all three disciplines without pain. This year I felt ready for the World Championships and I was excited to see if I was able to win my age-group one more time. This is my first year in the age-group 50-54 division. 

On race day I woke up at 03.30 a.m. and felt ready. After having had some breakfast, we went to the transition area. On my way, before we arrived to the transition area, I ran 2 km including 3 intervals with increasing pace. It felt good to prepare the body for the race.

In the transition area, i got "body marked" and had 500 ml of energy drink. I controlled that my bike was ready and that the pressure in the tires was okay. At 06.35 a.m., we were allowed to get into the water and do some warm up. 15 minutes later, all age-group men started the swim. I felt good and had a nice swimming with a good pace all the way. My time was 1.00.58 and not impressive, but acceptable on a day with many waves. I felt good when I went out of T1 with my bike. I felt strong and it was easy to keep the right pulse during the 180 km on the bike. I kept my focus on the energy and salt intake all the way. At 150 km, i felt a little tired, but I kept my pace and finished the 180 km in 5.00.33 hours, the fastest bike split in my age-group. I entered T2 as the first man in my age-group, a lead of 9 minutes to no. 2 in my age-group.

I felt ready for the marathon. By 12 km, the lead was only 4.30 minutes. The hill up the Palani Road was tough and I focused on keeping the pace towards Energy lab. I had been able to run for 3 months before the race, but I hadn't had enough time for basic training. I knew it would not be possible to run a good marathon time this year, but I had to do my best and stay focused until the Finish line. After the turning point in Energy lab Wolfgang Schmatz, who won this age-group in 2012 and 2013, came even closer. At 38 km, Wolfgang and I ran side by side. I ran his pace and I felt that I was able to push a little harder. I also knew it was necessary in order to win our age-group. On my way down Palani Road I decided to run as fast as I could the last 1,5 km. After 9 hours and 31 minutes, I heard the words "You are an Ironman" and even better, "Bent is the World Champion". It was such a hard day as it was very windy and the temperatures were high. 

This victory means a lot to me, as I have had many challenges in 2013 and the beginning of 2014. In January, I was told that I am born with a heart failure.

I got a pulled breast muscle in December 2013. I went to the doctor who also controlled the blood pressure. It was much too high, so she wanted me to have my heart checked at the hospital. I went to the hospital and they found out that I am born with an aortic valve with only 2 leaflets instead of 3. They couldn't understand how I have been able to do sport at such a high level for so many years without noticing any problems. The doctor wouldn't tell me it was okay to continue doing triathlon until he was sure that it would not be dangerous for me.

I could not imagine a life without triathlon. Not until May I was told it is okay continuing doing triathlon.

I will need surgery in some years, but I will not need to change my lifestyle. My heart is very strong and looks good. It is not enlarged. It seems that my body simply adopted to the situation during the years. I have never felt that anything was wrong and I do not worry any more. Now I get some medicine for the high blood pressure and I am ready for more challenges.

Thank you so much, Quintana Roo, for sponsoring me. Your support means everything to me. 

 QR signs 7-time Ironman Champion Chris McDonald 'Big Sexy' to Race on a PRsix at the Ironman World Championship
Chattanooga, Tennessee (October 6, 2014) - Quintana Roo (QR) is excited to announce that Chris 'Big Sexy' McDonald will race at the Ironman World Championships on QR's new flagship bike, the PRsix.  The agreement will have McDonald on a QR for the next three years.

"Chris McDonald is one of the top Ironman athletes in the sport," said Mac McEneaney, Director of Sales and Marketing for Quintana Roo. "He's got a great image, a loyal fan base and a team of racers who understand what he's about.  We like everything he stands for.'

The agreement was scheduled to begin on January 1, 2015, but the timeframe was moved up once McDonald had a chance to spend a couple of weeks on his new PRsix.  

'The bike handles amazingly in all conditions from windy flats to winding hills,' Said McDonald.  'I have seen the numbers from the wind tunnel, and I have taken the bike out on a 140+ mile ride, I am certain I am on the best bike for me in Hawaii.  To be associated with the pioneers of the triathlon bike and a company that has deep roots in triathlon is a blessing.'

In addition to sponsoring McDonald, QR will work with his Big Sexy Racing Team as well.  The team has approximately 100 athletes who train and race all over the world in Big Sexy Racing Gear.

'The Big Sexy Racing Team is an extra bonus to the agreement with Chris,' added Peter Hurley, CEO of Quintana Roo.  'When you have a talented group of triathletes who support a pro, they naturally want to affiliate with those partners.'

Anyone who would like to meet McDonald next week can stop by the QR booth at 5:30 pm on Tuesday, October 7, during the opening night of the Ironman World Championship Expo for a meet and greet with him.  If you would like to learn more about Chris McDonald, visit his website www.chris-mcdonald.net or follow him on twitter: @bigsexymcdonald.

About Quintana Roo: Quintana Roo was the first company to create a triathlon-specific wetsuit over 25 years ago, and then a tri-specific bike two years later. QR remains the only company in the world wholly committed to triathlon by focusing solely on creating the best fitting and most aerodynamic, functional triathlon bikes in existence. Follow QR at quintanarootri.com and @quintanarootri. 

It's Personal: Jess Smith

How is triathlon 'Personal' for you?
Triathlon couldn't be more personal for me.  It is not just a hobby or a passion, it's a lifestyle.  Triathlon has taught me discipline, goal setting, how to deal with disappointment and success.  Through triathlon I have met the most amazing people sponsors, teammates, and almost all of my best friends.  I now have a world-wide network of peers with whom I can communicate, share experiences, and rely on for information and inspiration.  Triathlon has taught me so much about the person I am and also about the person I want to be.  Mostly importantly it keeps me healthy and extremely happy!

When did you start doing triathlons?
The first race I registered for was the Florida 70.3 in 2006.  I had just joined a triathlon team and some of my teammates suggested it might be a good idea to try a shorter one first.  I ended up racing one Olympic distance tri a couple months before Florida and I was hooked!  Ironman CDA in 2007 was my first Ironman and also my 3rd triathlon ever.  To say I didn't quite know what I was getting myself into would be an understatement.  But I finished!

Why did you start?
I decided I wanted to be a triathlete 'some day' when I was pretty young.  I grew up swimming and always really enjoyed running.  I also knew how to ride a bike, what more do you need, right?  I'm not sure I have a single fast twitch muscle in my body, so I pretty much knew before I started that Ironman was going to be my distance.  A couple years after I graduated from college, I realized if I was every going to be the triathlete I always dreamed of being, I should probably get started.  I bought a road bike in early 2006 for about $500, threw some aero bars on it, and got to work.  

What have been some of your best and favorite races so far?
The races where I have been at my best definitely hold a special place in my heart.  For that reason I am extremely fond of Vegas (Amateur World Champion 2011), St. George, Utah (Amateur Champion 2011), and now Coeur D'Alene, Idaho (3rd Place Pro), three spots for breakthrough races.  I also love Ironman Arizona.  The crowd support is amazing and I usually know a lot of other athletes racing, which always makes the weekend more fun.  Not to mention it was where I first qualified for Kona (2009), and where I first broke 10 hours (2011).

What helps keep you motivated?
I am always working to get better.  As soon as I achieve a goal, I have a new one to work towards. I am lucky that I also have amazing training partners to keep me motivated.  They get me out of bed, challenge me at workouts, and inspire me to be at my best.  It definitely doesn't hurt that I get to train in some of the most amazing locations and facilities. Swimming in the Stanford aquatic center with Stanford Masters, riding and running up and down beautiful hills in redwood forests or along the pacific coast is enough to keep anyone motivated.

What don't you like about triathlon?
Laundry!  Sweat stained, stinky laundry!  My husband is also not a fan.

What does a 'typical' day in the life of Jess Smith look like? 
Most of my days start with a 4:30-5:00AM wake-up call and early swim session.  After swimming I commute an hour to San Francisco to work at the corporate office of Pottery Barn Kids, aka my 'other job.'  I work for 7-8 hours, sometimes running and lifting weights over lunch. Then it's back to Palo Alto for an evening bike or run session.  When the workouts are over, I usually have just enough time to stretch, make and eat dinner, get my clothes and food ready for the next day, then hop into bed at 8 or 8:30PM.  If I'm lucky I also have a little quality time with my husband. 

You've come off a fantastic 3rd-place finish as IM CdA; how did you feel coming into the race, and how do you feel now?
I was really excited going into this race.  With a lot more long bikes and runs under my belt this season, I felt more prepared to race Ironman than I had in the last three years.  My coaches and I designed what I thought was a great, and realistic, race plan.  I knew if I executed it well, and of course had good race luck no flat tires, mechanical issues, GI issues etc - I was going to have a great day.  It's Ironman so you never know for sure what you are going to get when the gun goes off, but it seemed like everything just fell into place.  It was the most fun I have ever had racing Ironman and now I'm more motivated than ever.  

It sounds like you really enjoy riding your Illicito- what's your favorite part about the bike?
I feel like this bike was made for me.  It's set up for easy adjustments so you can really customize the fit to any body type.  The ISM saddle that comes standard is the most comfortable saddle I have ever ridden, which is super important when you are putting in 200+ miles a week.  The bike is light, but stiff, handles extremely well, and is easy to maintain. It looks pretty sweet, too!

What else do you have planned for this season?

Next up for me is the Lake Stevens 70.3 in August and Ironman Wisconsin in September.  After that my season is TBD, but there will most likely be another Ironman or two.


Looking to avoid the hassle of traveling with your bike? Want to upgrade your ride for race-day? Quintana Roo has you covered! RentQR is a brand-new service from the friendly folks at Quintana Roo bikes in Chattanooga, Tennessee. They'll ensure you've got the right bike, the perfect fit, and have the bike set-up to your specifications on race-day. Visit RentQR.com to reserve your bike today! go


We'll be at the following events and look forward to seeing you.

IM Coeur d'Alene
IM Lake Placid
IM Louisville
IM Wisconsin
IM Lake Tahoe
IM Chattanooga
IM Kona
IM Florida
IM Arizona