Saturday, October 02, 2010

2011 Lottery is Open!

The lottery for the 2011 Ironman World Championships is now open. This is obviously a topic near and dear to my heart. Looking around blogs and twitter-verse, I was surprised to see how much opposition there was to the Lottery. People are saying that the lottery is lame and that the lottery people "don't deserve to be there." I understand what these people are saying, and I hope they will understand me when I say that they are morons.

First, a disclaimer: there are a lot of people out there who say "if I ever do Kona, it's going to be because not qualified, not through the lottery." And that's fine by me. It's a fantastic goal and a great accomplishment and more power to them.

Getting back to the lottery... it wasn't created by NBC as a desperate attempt to boost ratings. It's been around pretty much as long as the race itself. And who knows... maybe the race founders created the lottery as a sneaky way to make it easier to sell the TV rights with all of those human-interest stories about the "everyman" doing the race. Doesn't matter. The point is, the Ironman and the lottery have been connected since the start. Hate the lottery, hate the founding fathers.

I've heard the argument that no other sport lets "average people" into their championship matches. Well, not many other sports have 2000 people competing at once. And not to take anything away from all of those age-groupers who reach the podium, but if you're going to have 20 first-place finishers in a "World Championship Race", I think it's safe to say that the rules are a little different here.

I personally prefer to say that people "qualified" for Kona rather than "they earned their slot." Because I feel that I too earned my slot. Oh, maybe not with a fast finishing time, but maybe the Ironman gods smiled on me for the support I've given other racers over the years, and I have good race-karma, (To clarify, nothing pleases me more than to mock triathlon hippies with all of their voodoo magic training ideas. But I'm not about to mess with the Island gods. That's bad mojo.)

So to anyone who is racing in Kona next week who feels like I don't belong there, don't worry about me. I promise I won't be in your way during the swim or won't cut you off on the bike course. You just go ahead and do your little striving-to-the-podium thingee. But verily I say unto theee, (that's right, verily): I deserve to be there more than you do. And I guarantee you my supporters are better than yours. So there.

(And no, I'm not entering the lottery for next year.)


Blogger celmore said...

I totally agree with your post. How many people have gotten their spots because they we passed down because the top 3 athletes in there age group couldn't go to the race!

I'm registering!

Good luck!!!

10:24 AM  
Blogger monica said...

i'm quite the opposite. i'm pretty certain, the ONLY way i'll ever get to kona (and i do wanna go) is to get in through the lottery. even if my mom still believes i can qualify...

10:04 PM  

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