It was a hot day. It is a great city. Its a great venue. We had mostly successes in finishing, although Don did not make it unfortunately. His back seized up on him on the bike around mile 66 and he gutted it out to 73 before he finally had to call it a day. He is a multi-time Ironman, so he knows when to quit.
There was a big snafu on this situation, however, so I never made it to my afternoon volunteer position. I got a call that he needed to be picked up in transition. This was just before 3 pm, just before I was to check in. So I figured I would hang around the transition until he got there, see what needed to be done, and take it from there. We waited, and waited, and waited. We checked the med tent twice, walked all around the area, sat and waited some more, even called back on the number of the cell phone that had called me. Nothing. No Don.
We found a very nice place to sit and watch the bike in and run out area, so I did get to see many of the bloggers, just didn't get a one-on-one with only a few. We waited until the cutoff of the bike, 6pm, and then he finally showed up. Its a long story where he was for 3 hours, and that of course didn't make the situation any better for him. We went back to the hotel eventually so he could get cleaned up, rest a bit, and get a bite to eat, and then headed back down to the finish area to wait for others.
Let me tell you, this finish line is the tops of the races I have been to before. All IM race finishes are unbelievable, but this was so cool! The finish is at Fourth Street Live! a street with open air eating areas, Hard Rock Cafe, bars, shops, boutiques, etc. So incredible. If you do this race for any other reason, it would be for the finish line. And of course, the volunteers there were incredible too. I did talk to Karen (Waddler). She had devoted most of her day to volunteering, so hats off to her!
Another note about the bike. I asked Don about the traffic in LaGrange. He didn't seem to know what I was talking about, so apparently the athletes weren't as put off about that situation as the spectators, because I wasn't the only one shocked at the open road situation.
The finish area, while it is so incredible, is way too far from the transition. They need to do something about that. I would say its a good mile from transition, so too far for people after that type of race to get back to and get their stuff or cars.
More later. I have a plane to catch.