For you transition, to hold your shoes up verticaly, best to use is dental floss or elastics.
Then you can attach either the front shoe to your water bottle cage and the rear shoe to your skewer.
DONT ATTACH TO ANYTHING TO CLOSE TO YOUR DERAILLEUR!
Sounds stupid, but I have seen it! a few times.
Another option is to attach a ziptie to somewhere on the frame and then that leaves you with a nice spot to attach the other end of your floss or elastic.
Personaly, I like dental floss better, because its a clean break and I have had a few times when the elastic dont break immediately or I know this one chick whos elastic flew into her rear casettes!
To help keep you shoes straps wide and open, you can use some paper clips to keep everything open and in place.
Also putting a pin at the end of your shoe straps will prevent any chance of your shoe strap getting lose and out of
its little tunel <--very vague description I know!
Maybe I'll get you a photo!
As for your race morning breaky.
Its a very very personal thing.
Best option is to eat whatever you eat before your regular morning trainings....And a cup of coffee