I am a fan of Ironman racing. Coverage varies race by race but there is always someone I am rooting for at these events. Usually with domestic races I know a few of the pros and there are a few local athletes to check up on. Even if all the coverage available is sporadic updates and tweets from people who are at the race I pay attention. I’d love to see consistent video coverage and much more frequent official live updates of the pro races. A few of the races have that level of coverage but not all.
The Rev3 organization really emphasizes live coverage of the pro races as well as a post race pro race recap video. It would be great to see Ironman take those steps for all their full distance events. Ironman Europe actually already does nice race recap videos of their pro races on YouTube, I recommend watching them during trainer rides to get fired up! A few simple steps and Ironman could really get more value out of the pro races. I think it would be good for them, good for the sport, and definitely good for us pros as well. Andrew Messick, WTC CEO, has already taken some smart steps to get the pro races more organized (regional championships, rotating 70.3 world championship) but there is much room for improvement. I am optimistic about his leadership in developing Ironman as a real professional sport. Of course I wish they would make the changes now rather than step by step over the coming years but it is not a perfect world.
Right now I am really getting excited for Ironman Wisconsin. As far as I’m concerned as a midwestern pro it may as well be Kona. There will be hundreds of Minnesotans racing and hundreds more Minnesotans spectating. There is no better place for me to race in front of everyone who supports me. I am also excited because this will be my first ‘serious’ Ironman. Looking back at my preparation for my first two (IM AZ 2010, IM FL 2011) the training I’m capable of now is at a whole different level. Those races both went ok so I am hoping this one will go well!
Even if you have no interest in ever doing one yourself I really recommend making the trip to Madison to watch Ironman Wisconsin. I’ve watched many years and the race weekend is a blast! Be a fan!
As an added bonus, this year Ironman Wisconsin will feature a vicious Gopher-Badger Ironwar. I am not one to stir up any fanatical feuds, riveting rivalries or vindictive vendettas but I am really looking forward to putting those Badger Boys in their place. Shout out to Blake Becker, Thomas Gerlach and probably Paul Eicher!