Friday, October 29, 2010

Ironman Access my 2 cents

Would I be remiss as a triathlete if I did not comment on this?

The WTC (as you ALL already know) dropped the IRONMAN Access program this week only to rescind a few days later in response to the SOCIAL media BLOWING up over it. It's been so interesting to hear all the remarks. Thusfar I've only found one or two that did not totally trash WTC and IM for being greedy money grubbers.

No one fessed up to purchasing this $1k gem.. though people did because it was stated that it was FULL only days later. Of course FULL has not been qualified as it was never announced how many slots were available. And who knows if that wasn't announced just to 'stop the presses' while they made their little video about rescinding.

I'd love to give the WTC the benefit of the doubt ... thinking that they really did have the athletes in mind, but it is a hard pill to swallow. I think they made a good move in rescinding in response to all the negative comments. And I really don't think it was 'too late'. They made a blunder.. yes. People were pissed.. yes. Does Ironman (the brand) still stand for a HUGE thing in people's minds.. yes. Ironman is representative of the 140.6... I think it will take a long time for people to truly get past that. Not to mention the whole qualifying for Kona thing.. the triathlon of all triathlons.

I think David of Chicago Now makes some interesting statements about the whole thing. While I don't agree that people "thumbed their noses at the other race directors and let them know, "you are an after thought Rev3 or Silverman, a cute diversion after we do the Ironman."" I do believe that people have/had a certain respect for the long standing Ironman brand and are sad to see that tarnished by the goal of being a mega money maker instead of a dream creator and are a little afraid that they won't be able to get to the race they want .. so they can get to the THE RACE they WANT.. Kona. Many people get into this sport after seeing KONA on TV. So there's SERIOUS brand awareness.

I do think that a lot of Ironman money is now going to go to the non-IM races such as REV3 , the Great Floridian and Silverman... for a lot of reasons. It creates variety. These races bring a different feel to them. REV3 is growing like wildfire.. who knows what they are going to have to offer their athletes over the years. People are starting to believe and realize that it does not matter whether your 140.6 was branded IM.. it's STILL 140.6! It's STILL a huge accomplishment.. YOUR accomplishment.

I love Run Faster Mommy's open letter to the WTC. It says so much about where Triathlon is going. People are seeing the accomplishment not the brand. Things are changing. It's going to take a while, but they are.

You've got to check out the sweet video at Swim Bike Live. HYSTERICAL!

What do you think? Did the WTC just shoot itself in the foot and we are going to just watch them bleed out or are they redeemed?

Now get off the computer and stop obsessing over the BS and get your work out in folks. It might be the off-season, but there is still work to be done!


  1. This way quite the hot topic the last few days. I went on and on about it yesterday, but in short I just don't care if the WTC remains the dominant player in triathlon or not.

  2. Patrick.. true dat. Just doesn't really matter. And we all need to make our 'vote' w/ our cash money. That is the only message any race organizer (huge conglomerate or not) is going to hear! :)

    To read what Patrick has to say ..

  3. I originally got into the sport of triathlon after watching the 2009 Kona event and thinking this is awesome. I only knew of Ironman and thus I wanted to be an 'Ironman' but since starting my blog and reading what everybody has to say it is no longer necessary.

    Would it be nice to hear 'you are an Ironman' one day? To me yes, but if I go 140.6 at Rev3 what difference does it really make?

    I am committed to 70.3 IMCA and will probably do others but it just doesn't hold the same presence it once did and that was before this fiasco of Ironman Access.

    I had wanted an M-Dot tattoo to say I did it, but now I am going with 70.3 on the inside and 140.6 on the outside and if it is an Ironman great, but if not I still did it.

    It is the journey and the distance not the brand I am focused on.

  4. I love your graphic of the M-dot filled with a money background. lol!

  5. Thanks for the link love. ;-)

  6. The good thing is the next day they canceled the program.