With everything I’ve had going on with school in the past couple weeks, I completely forgot to post about the Ironman World Championships, held in Kona, Hawaii on October 21, 2006. This race is considered one of the ultimate endurance tests in the world, and is the triathlon world’s equivalent to the Super Bowl.

What makes this race so special is that there are qualifying spots available to us average “age-group” athletes, who get a chance to race alongside the best in the world. Participants either need to qualify through another Ironman event, or win one of a few spots available through a lottery.

There were a number of athletes from the KW area competing at Kona this year. My marathon training partner, Wolfgang Schmidt, qualified in Arizona in the spring, and Bob Dawson qualified in his first Ironman at Lake Placid in July. Both of these guys are in their 40’s, and I am amazed at what phenomenal shape they are in. From talking with them over the past few months, I have really realized the commitment required to train for an Ironman. These guys think nothing of 6-7 hour training days. While training for the marathon, I did all my long Sunday runs with Wolfgang, and learned a lot about what it takes to hold up over those distances. It’s been a great inspiration to hang out with these guys and see how they train.

Anyway, both of these guys had great races. Wolfgang’s finished in 11:34:48, and was 108/166 in the M45-49 categoy, while Bob finished in 10:49:26, 123/215 in the M40-44 age group. Awesome stuff when you consider that they’re up against the best in the world. Congrats guys – hopefully one day I will be there with you!!

PS – Read the official Ironman race wrap-up. There was a 6.7 earthquake on the island the week before, which made things interesting!

PPS – Down below I posted about Dick and Rick Hoyt. There were back again this year. Read about it here!


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