Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Can Lance Make Ironman Go Live?

Lance rides 2010 Tour Down Under. Credit
Only Lance is good enough for live TV? What about Chrissie Wellington, Craig Alexander, the Raelert brothers, Mirinda Carfrae, and all the other professional triathletes and age-group qualifiers who have graced Kona's Ironman World Championship stage?

If this post starts to not make sense, it's because I'm a bit enraged from reading this Bloomberg article--and thank you Timex Sports for sharing. It's not the article itself and not even that the World Triathlon Corp. is trying to capitalize on its biggest asset--having The Lance Armstrong race triathlons and finish second in his first 70.3 race--to gain live coverage of the infamous 17-hour event that takes place on Hawaii's Big Island in October. It's that Lance can have such a draw on the sport, and that Comcast's NBC network might actually agree to a live airing.

Triathlon is not all about Lance Armstrong. Sure, it's cool to follow him at the races--I'm 100 percent guilty of checking his progress in Panama two weeks ago--but I didn't go to ironmanlive.com just to see his name. I looked at all of the pros, men and women, to see how they stacked up in swim, bike, run, and how several finished a 1.2-mile swim in under 20 minutes, a feat that seems near impossible (ah, currents).

But apparently, as suspected, Lance drew more traffic to the Ironman website and is helping to spotlight the sport. Great for triathlon, which has already been on the rise and now might explode, but bad for other professionals in the sport. Or so I think. If I were in Craig Alexander's or Mirinda Carfrae's shoes, or anyone else who's raced Kona, I'd be wondering why I wasn't good enough to bring these sorts of accolades to the sport. Why Lance Armstrong and not the battle between Mark Allen and Dave Scott, or Chrissie Wellington going without a loss at the Ironman distance and winning her fourth championship? Then again, maybe it'd just fuel my fire to go faster.

Photo grabbed from AngusKingston at flickr.

1 comment:

  1. The same reason no one watched golf before Tiger Wooods. Just like other golfers realized he was good for the sport so would triathletes.



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