WTC, Ironman, Mdot.... WTC (World Triathlon Corporation) owns or is Ironman
When I think of Ironman I think of my passion, my friends, my life, my business and a bit of pain but a lot of adventure and accomplishment.
Some hear Ironman and get angry? What I say?
Why? I've heard it all.. My favorite is the complaint that they are "ripping " us off with high race fees. They (Ironman) are just trying to make a profit. Here is the deal WTC is a for profit company!!! They have continued to build a brand that is growing every day. It is a brand that triathletes are willing to pay for.
Do people accuse Apple of ripping of people for high priced phones and iPads? Triathlon is a choice. You make the choice to race or not. If the race it too expensive choose another one. If the iPhone is too expensive, buy an Android. ( and wish you had an Iphone)
Why is an Mdot (branded race) more expensive? Lots of reasons.. But yes people will pay so why should they discount? But you also know what you are getting? Closed roads, stocked aid stations, marshals; quality medical, Kona slots and a crappy back pack and an ugly shirt. BUT you get the experience of a world class race. You want home grown, go race home grown - it's a choice.
There is a lot of negative PR about WTC these days from the 50 Women to Kona to the end in of the lottery... neither of which I comment on.
But a lot has changed since I did my first ironman in 2008. Here is why I think they are better
1- there are so many more races - 15 in North America
2- so many races that they don't all sell out in 24 hours. You can still get into Coeur d'Alene, Whistler, Muskoka, Lake Tahoe, Cabo or Cozumel for 2015. When I started every race sold out in 24 hours thus 12 months of planning ahead was mandatory. Now more choices.
3- transfer policy. Hello? This is an great deal and one, due to my 12 week hiatus from running, that I have first hand experience with. I had a deadline of May 1 for Whistler ( if I was not running 3 miles / 3x a week than Whistler was off the table). That is not happening so I opened a ticket with ironman inquiring about a transfer. 72 hours later, $50 and I am registered for Lake Tahoe. Sweet.
4- insurance $40- (no brainier going forward after this injury). I signed up for St George 70.3 when I knew I could not race Oceanside. Clearly never imagined I would still be sidelined. In any case I did get the insurance but could not race. 3 weeks out I filled out the form, had the Dr sign it and mailed it in. 1 week after the race $275 check arrived. Nice.
Transferring and refunds were among the biggest complaints with Ironman- they listened and acted. Thank you!!
Now fix the bloody race day tracking (although it is improving), ditch crappy pizza post race and we are golden!