Friday, May 22, 2009

FL 70.3 Race Report, Johnny G, and other Self Important Blow Hards

Well, the FL 70.3 was a disappointment. I did everything right leading into the race, including avoiding the pre-race BS. I did see one guy from Team Timex (don't know who he was) swimming at the YMCA on Saturday. He was flexing in front of the window for the women on the treadmill and walking around like a peacock. Every person there was laughing at him. There was another team from New York who were on the crowded bus talking about how "great" they were going to do. This race had a lot of low key folks, which is why I like it. The "pointy end of the field" had an extraordinarily high amount of triathlon weenie assholes. The only thing great they did was look like fools.

This race, like just about any WTC race in Florida, was lawless. Two large peleton screamed through the field. The second one was broken up by a crash that sent 14 to the hospital. Any male racing from Mexico or Brazil were drafting. The funniest one was a rather large Mexican guy drafting a really small American gal. She couldn't have been more than 100 lbs but this 200 lbs guy was on her like white on rice. The marshals were completely ineffective with zero penalties in the first tent. The automobile traffic on the course was like any training ride during rush hour. Only the good will of a woman in a black Mercedes allowed me and a few other riders to have clear road until we caught the next group of cars. Cyclists were crossing the center line and other dangerous riding behavior that one day will get them killed.

My Race:
The pre-race stuff, well, I was running a little late but got my act together in transition quickly and luckily had no problems. I was out of transition early and very relaxed.

The swim started great. I was left of the first buoy but wanted the super fit guys to lead the way. They did, and I tucked in right behind them. I never got touched in the first 800 meters and at the first buoy I was right behind Bruce Genari. I went around the first buoy and got punched in the neck by a guy screaming at me. He said I was "hitting him" I swam a bit of heads up and said I hadn't touched anyone. He tried to hit me again and missed. I swam away three times and he grabbed my legs and started punching me in the calves of both legs. After three attacks on me, the water polo player rage came out. I'm not proud of it but it was time to fight back. I punched him in the ribs and then under the ribs knocking the breath out of him. Fight over. The damage was done. It was impossible for me to turn my head to breathe and as I type this I cannot turn my head without pain. The swim was long between 4 and 10 minutes depending on who you want to believe. I swam easy and it felt good at the time.

The bike started fine. I went through mile 20 in under 55 minutes, but was unable to be in the aerobars for longer than 60 seconds. The rest of the ride was a complete disaster with no power (my only triathlete strength these days). My back and neck were in severe pain. I told myself that if I rode slower than 2:55 I would get checked out at medical. I came in at 2:54:38. Keep going.

On the run, I started quite good with 8:54, 8:38, 8:41 and then the wheels fell off. Pain was screaming down my back, leg and arms. I would literally run 400 meters and then walk 200 meters. This repeated for the remainder of the run. I was pretty worried for a little while, but I was still moving forward. I saw David Rozelle running with one leg in the distance and knew I wasn't going to quit. He was doing the race on one f'ing leg. Bad pain or not, I'm going to finish.

I did finish in what was a completely terrible race. I am proud for not quitting. It was more than an idol thought believe me. I was concerned about my long term health which is far more important.

Johnny G - The founder of Spinning
I got a comment to the blog I wrote about six months ago from the man himself. I refuse to publish it, or any other dribble other than an apology from him. You may remember that Mr. G and his organization believe that the word "spin a thon" infringes on his ownership of the word "spin" as it applies to indoor cycling and that the use of "spin" effects his brand. This is why we had to change the name of the ALS Spin a thon to Cycle for ALS. Mr. G went on to say he gave $50,000 to Augie's quest - a number yet to be confirmed. He also made several statements where he didn't have all the facts about my association with John W..

I used to believe that what he started was great. Now, in my opinion, I believe Johnny G is just out for himself and what he preached in the beginning of his Spinning movement is all just bullshit in an effort to make money. I've been teaching indoor cycling for 13 years now. My classes are packed with waiting lists longer than the class themselves. I'm proud to call them cycling classes and have no affiliation with him whatsoever. I regret giving him the $278 it cost to certify me back in the day.

I ask for a boycott of anything "Spinning" or Johnny G related until he apologizes for how he treated our event and stop calling his event "the first indoor charity cycling event" it wasn't - we weren't even the first indoor event and we started our event three years before his "first ever" indoor cycling charity event. You'd think that a guy who has a full time person searching the internet for people's use of the word "spin" with their events that he would have researched if he had the first "indoor cycling charity event". What he probably has is the first indoor "spinning" event because everyone using the word "spin" or "spinning" has to pay him a fee and hasn't done an event. I dunno...just an opinion. Stop hiding behind email and attorneys Johnny G. It is people like you who perpetuate the nation's opinion of southern California. False. Fake. Arrogant. Self absorbed.

Pro Athletes and Others Not Carrying Spares had a podcast that made a great point about athletes not carrying spares. Pro athletes should carry a spare in order to try and get a check. One pro I know lost out on a check because he didn't carry a spare. It was a shame, because even if it took 2:00 to change a tube he still could have been 1st, 2nd or 3rd based on his lead at the time.

Amateurs not carrying spares. What the hell? Are you so "good" that you DNF at the first flat? For anyone, this is unacceptable. You finish every race unless you need medical.

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