Thursday, October 28, 2010

New Ironman Passport: $1000 - Cut in line in front of the unwashed masses to register first!

I am going to cut to the chase: If you want special access to the registration privileges of an Ironman event of your choice, pay the World Triathlon Corporation (WTC) $1,000 and they will allow you to register for an Ironman event one week before the unwashed masses are allowed too.

Also, if you can't qualify for the Ironman World Championships race in Kona because you are not super human, they will allow you two positions in a lottery to get into that championship versus only one position for the unwashed and similarly unqualified masses.

This tells me two things: one they are a bunch of greedy people. Two the WTC must be doing something right to have such an oversupply of athletes to justify making this this offer with a straight face.

From the WTC website:
Today World Triathlon Corporation (WTC) launches an exclusive athlete membership program called Ironman Access. In addition to other member benefits, the program will offer advance registration for Ironman events worldwide before entries open to the general public. Membership into Ironman Access is on a first-come, first-served basis and will close once it reaches capacity


Above is a photo of the Ironman numbers I wore on both my bike and jersey. I look at them from time to time to remember what it took to allow me to get where I am today despite tremendous deficits. I credit that race and Julie Moss for convincing me that failure is temporary and that you can even "fail" your way to success. I kid you not.


Nicole said...

Check this out for a laugh about it all:

And they have since apologized for the whole mess, and they are going to refund the money.

Tony Austin said...

Give that man a "fixie" so he can backpedal! Crazy, huh?

I thought Facebook was going to arrange a pitchfork and torches party.

I got to post that video when I have time. Thanks for the links.

Sheila said...

Thank goodness, this program has now been rescinded.

Tony Austin said...

I thought you guys were going to crucify him and post videos on You Tube

phonon56 said...

This is such an interesting topic. I don't think we have the full story. Many athletes sign up for multiple events only to cancel once they have qualified for Worlds or Kona. This usually leaves spots but the staff have already printed up materials with their names, embedded info on chips, and created a database of the participants. Quite a bit goes into making sure the triathlete gets his data and information. This has been more important than assuring empty spaces.

One way around that is to get that 'overflow' of triathletes out of the way. There is a good chance they would have added a better cancelation for those athletes as well which would have opened up more slots for people in the long run.

I'm not sure what to think. After all, Ironman is a brand and a business and they want to grow. How do you grow? Add more ironmans in different locations and deal with the issues of securing more/less/exclusive spots. If you want a good ticket to a ball game, buy box seats. If you want to save costs, buy nosebleed seats.
If triathletes had kept quiet and voted with their dollars, I think it would have been more effective. It could have helped branch ironman into more competitive events and championships that were non-ironman brand. This, in turn, could have lowered costs in the long run....