I have a friend who is a competitive IMer but was hit by a car in his first race after he retired from his job. He was recovering from major injuries and needed somethig to motivate him so he challenges me to a sprint triathlon. I say yes and work my butt off to beat him, which I did, by a scant 30 seconds, which he lost in transition. I out ran him but he out biked and out swam me, it was quite close. We continued the rivalry the following year and put on our own triathlon, we called it Tribabes vs. Grumpy Old Men triathlon. It was a ton of fun but he mopped the floor with me. I'm waiting for him to age some more. ;)
At IM CDA, I was suffering on the run at mile 18. I saw a man ahead of me, running slowly but running. He had "62" written on his calf which made me realize I was being a major wussy for my internal whining, so I latched on to the back of him, matching him stride for stride. He heard me behind him and asked me to join him and we pulled each other through the final miles. He was fighting for a Kona spot (he was 3rd in his ag and didn't get the slot) but he was so encouraging toward me, he said several times that he couldn't believe how well I was doing in my first Ironman. At mile 25, he told me to run ahead and get a good photo. I felt bad about leaving him behind but he insisted, and I ran the most satisfying and glorious mile of my life.
I have a great appreciation for the older men in this sport. Any stories out there you would like to share?