We seldom hear people criticize BMW for offering an alternative to Mercedes Benz, or Pepsi to Coke...So why should anyone bemoan a long-distance race series as an alternative to IMNA?
I want to one day race at Kona, so I'll cough up the dough one more time to try and get there. But I'm really excited about this race distance.
I like different race distances though, I like Muskoka, I like the Around the Bay 30K in Hamilton and the Soldier Field 10M in Chicago. Sure, the races are longer than your standard Oly or 10K, but they don't present the incredibly difficult, and risky challenge in preparation that characterize Ironmans and Marathons. Its difficult at best to keep the preparation for an Ironman from consuming the life of a working triathlete...And a marathon isn't a piece of cake either. We're pretty much betting all of our marbles when we sign up for IMoo, IMLP or CdA...
Maybe Tri 101 won't ever be the elephant in the room, but it would be nice to have that race series out there.
Since doing my first 30K, I thought it was a great distance because I can do a lot of 2 hour runs. They're manageable week in and week out, but once I try and hit the 2 1/2 hour runs for a marathon prep I really start to feel the pressure and I suspect most have the same experience. If it were possible for a running race and a triathlon to be related, I think the 30K and the 101 distances are.
So we have a challenging event that isn't Ironman. Fantastic. If Tri 101 is trying to be Ironman they'll fail and I really doubt that's their goal. But if they want to take something from Ironman, they should take the spirit of the World Championship venue--racing in paradise. Paradise, The Woodlands, Texas is not.
Really, I hope that the distance and their brand isn't "too smart" for their customers.
And paradise, er...I mean, The Woodlands is on my calendar.