Wilkes-Barre pro-draft a la St. Anthony's '97 - ITU infection continues...

Wilkes-Barre pro-draft a la St. Anthony's '97 - ITU infection continues...

Post by Chaz The T » Sat, 30 May 1998 04:00:00


I dunno who on RST competes at Wilkes-Barre, but that venerable triathlon is
the latest to become an ITU points race (and therefore draft-legal for
the Pro race).  

 It's just such a damn friggin' shame that becoming an ITU points race (and
therefore an Olympic qualifying race) is synonymous with legal drafting for
the pros.  

I think Dan's got at least one USTS *non-DRAFTING* race that is also an ITU
points race, but I might be mistaken. Do the pros think they won't get in
enough practice doing pack racing between now and Sydney?  

But who in the hell understands that farce the ITU calls an "Olympic
qualifying system". Last time I checked, the ITU itself was confused.

 Sigh.

Chaz

 
 
 

Wilkes-Barre pro-draft a la St. Anthony's '97 - ITU infection continues...

Post by MayaWill » Sat, 30 May 1998 04:00:00

Gee Chaz,

maybe I am off base here, but I.M.O., the US pros need all the practice they
can in anticipation of Sidney 2000, That is if we can get even 1 or 2 men
qualified. The Elite level of the sport has no relevance to the average weekend
athlete and given the fact that 90 percent of these pros make less than $10,000
per year(And do not have much of a realistic travel budget.) you might cut them
some slack for wanting some elite field draft legal races in the USA.

Draft legal races are no more a threat to the traditional version of triathlon
than any other of the offshoots of the sport (ie:X-Terra).
So quit yer ***ing and give the kids a break.

Tom(Now dressed in a 3 layer Simpson Driving suit for protection aginst the
flames.)

 
 
 

Wilkes-Barre pro-draft a la St. Anthony's '97 - ITU infection continues...

Post by Wade Blomgr » Sat, 30 May 1998 04:00:00

: Draft legal races are no more a threat to the traditional version of
: triathlon than any other of the offshoots of the sport (ie:X-Terra).

Until (what do I mean until...it's happening NOW) every clueless novice
(no offense intended, we all were once) who has seen 'triathlon' on TV
thinks that drafting is the status quo, never reads the rules...never
even sees the rules (the joy of the one day trifed license) and wreaks
havoc in local age group fields by drafting and blocking, staring blankly
or reacting aggressively when...uh...instructed otherwise, and raising
the risk for everyone, including you and I.   It's not just a "threat",
it's reality and I don't like it.  

Wade Blomgren


 
 
 

Wilkes-Barre pro-draft a la St. Anthony's '97 - ITU infection continues...

Post by Stephen Fle » Sat, 30 May 1998 04:00:00

Tom,

No you are not off base. You are just being logical and rational where this
issue is concerned. No flames from this corner.

Why should U.S.and for that matter Canadian elite triathletes be handicapped
when going to international competitions.We have some serious talent in our two
countries. Athletes that could have a shot at the top spots in the future World
Championships and the Olympic Games.

I am glad you pointed out the fact that some of these "pros" are trying to get
by on what many would consider a poverty wage. The sad fact is, it's true. An
even sadder fact is the truely great talent that has left the sport because
there is so little money to be had.

People wonder why the Europeans and the Aussies are now starting to dominate the
sport. It's a complex issue and the reasons are many, but one thing is that they
are not dithering over drafting for the pros in standard distance races.They are
getting on with.

Steve Fleck

P.S. How is parenthood and the training for IMC going?

Quote:

> Gee Chaz,

> maybe I am off base here, but I.M.O., the US pros need all the practice they
> can in anticipation of Sidney 2000, That is if we can get even 1 or 2 men
> qualified. The Elite level of the sport has no relevance to the average
weekend
> athlete and given the fact that 90 percent of these pros make less than
$10,000
> per year(And do not have much of a realistic travel budget.) you might cut
them
> some slack for wanting some elite field draft legal races in the USA.

> Draft legal races are no more a threat to the traditional version of triathlon
> than any other of the offshoots of the sport (ie:X-Terra).
> So quit yer ***ing and give the kids a break.

> Tom(Now dressed in a 3 layer Simpson Driving suit for protection aginst the
> flames.)

 
 
 

Wilkes-Barre pro-draft a la St. Anthony's '97 - ITU infection continues...

Post by Stephen Fle » Sat, 30 May 1998 04:00:00

Quote:

> : Draft legal races are no more a threat to the traditional version of
> : triathlon than any other of the offshoots of the sport (ie:X-Terra).

> Until (what do I mean until...it's happening NOW) every clueless novice
> (no offense intended, we all were once) who has seen 'triathlon' on TV
> thinks that drafting is the status quo, never reads the rules...never
> even sees the rules (the joy of the one day trifed license) and wreaks
> havoc in local age group fields by drafting and blocking, staring blankly
> or reacting aggressively when...uh...instructed otherwise, and raising
> the risk for everyone, including you and I.   It's not just a "threat",
> it's reality and I don't like it.  

> Wade Blomgren


Wade,

With all due respect, using this analogy, the next time that I am going to play
pick-up ice-hockey, I think I'll just haul off and deck the nearest guy to me
with a right upper-cut. I see the pros doing it. I guess I can to.

Sorry for the hyperbole.

Steve Fleck

 
 
 

Wilkes-Barre pro-draft a la St. Anthony's '97 - ITU infection continues...

Post by PTBro » Sat, 30 May 1998 04:00:00

Kudos to Tom and Steve. We (the pros) need more support like yourselves.

 
 
 

Wilkes-Barre pro-draft a la St. Anthony's '97 - ITU infection continues...

Post by SteveBl » Sat, 30 May 1998 04:00:00

Quote:

>Until (what do I mean until...it's happening NOW) every clueless novice
>(no offense intended, we all were once) who has seen 'triathlon' on TV
>thinks that drafting is the status quo, never reads the rules...never
>even sees the rules (the joy of the one day trifed license) and wreaks
>havoc in local age group fields by drafting and blocking, staring blankly
>or reacting aggressively when...uh...instructed otherwise, and raising
>the risk for everyone, including you and I.   It's not just a "threat",
>it's reality and I don't like it.  

Wade hits the nail square on the head.  The damage televised draft legal races
-- no matter what the venue -- do to "our" sport is real, and is not worth the
dubious benefits of participation in the Olympics.

Newcomers to a sport emulate the pros they see, for good and ill.  Growing up,
my hero was Willie Mays.  On the whole, he presented a good role model.  With
one exception:  the basket catch.  I'd get out in the outfield and try to catch
flies by holding my glove at waist level.  Willie could do it, so why couldn't
I?  Well, the coach finally convinced me why, but not before his frustration
level and my error rate peaked.

Let's stop the problem while we still can.


Tellus Venture Associates

"Certainly the game is rigged. Don't let that stop you;
if you don't bet, you can't win."  R.A.H.

 
 
 

Wilkes-Barre pro-draft a la St. Anthony's '97 - ITU infection continues...

Post by Chaz The T » Sat, 30 May 1998 04:00:00

Steve said:

Quote:
>Why should U.S.and for that matter Canadian elite triathletes be handicapped
>when going to international competitions.We have some serious talent in our two
>countries. Athletes that could have a shot at the top spots in the future World
>Championships and the Olympic Games.

>I am glad you pointed out the fact that some of these "pros" are trying to get
>by on what many would consider a poverty wage. The sad fact is, it's true. An
>even sadder fact is the truely great talent that has left the sport because
>there is so little money to be had.

>People wonder why the Europeans and the Aussies are now starting to dominate
> the sport. It's a complex issue and the reasons are many, but one thing is that
> they are not dithering over drafting for the pros in standard distance races.They
> are getting on with.
>Steve Fleck

   I doubt anyone on RST has ever or would ever deny the talent potential of
the pros. And I'll bet the concern over nationalistic fervor ("Oh, the US has
fallen so far behind in competition") is highly overhyped. I think you misread
exactly how much (or how little) the age groupers care about the pros.
   Yeah, sure, we think they're awesome, and there's no denying their talent,
and that some of us use some of the pro performances as ultimate achievements
for ourselves. But you know what?  For the majority of current US age
groupers, what the pros want has no bearing on whether we'll show up to that
transition area early Sunday or Saturday morn.

   I'll wager that what does matter is that they (the pros) are doing the same
basic race as the age groupers are, under (more or less, with a nod to USAT's
pro rules) the same rules.  When a governing body (ITU) in all it's wisdom
decides to become a  champion of draft legal tri and change the bedrock rules
of what we consider near and dear then you get the kind of outrage oft
expressed on RST.

     Worse yet, which was my basic point, is that when the ITU dangles the
Olympic carrot to the pros and says "draft legal" and in turn, the pros begin
lobbying the race directors for ITU points races (draft legal), and then the
race director's  take our US pure triathlon mainstay races like St. A's, Gulf
Coast, Wilkes-Barre, Wildflower, etc. and infect them with this pro vs. age
grouper delineation you get a sport who's rules bend to the minority
representation (pros) and not it's fundamental bedrock (age groupers).

      Drafting sucks because it's not the race the age groupers do, want to
do, nor do we have any great desire lend our US age group support (recall that
age groupers support the US race directors & their races with pros usually
comprising 5% or less of entrants) to races that feel compelled to bend this
way because they need to "support the pros".   Hell, if you privately asked
most US pros with Olympic aspirations, they'll invariably tell you they'd
prefer draft free any day..it's the race they've done for years. But instead
ITU and the Olympics force them to defend doing draft legal races (much like
the Jill Newman diatribe in IT a few months ago).  Pathetic.

   I'm not being anti-pro-with-Olympic-dreams here. I'm merely saying that
 if the ITU is doing a different type of race they want to call "triathlon"
and we need some US qualifiers, then go create some *new* draft legal races in
the US, let the ITU give it's blessing and be on your merry way to Sydney.

Don't f*k with the well established time trial US tri's like Wilkes-Barre &
St. A's and put the race directors in the middle of the storm. Let the ITU
build it's own circuit. CART vs Indy.  

  And like other posts have noted, don't spew that word "triathlon" around
newbies  to the sport unless you take the time to discuss the context of the
word.  It's sad that I have to put the words "time trial" in front of the
original meaning to explain.

My rather strongly worded $0.02.
Chaz

 
 
 

Wilkes-Barre pro-draft a la St. Anthony's '97 - ITU infection continues...

Post by Wade Blomgr » Sat, 30 May 1998 04:00:00


: > : Draft legal races are no more a threat to the traditional version of
: > : triathlon than any other of the offshoots of the sport (ie:X-Terra).
: >
: > Until (what do I mean until...it's happening NOW) every clueless novice
: > (no offense intended, we all were once) who has seen 'triathlon' on TV
: > thinks that drafting is the status quo, never reads the rules...never
: > even sees the rules (the joy of the one day trifed license) and wreaks
: > havoc in local age group fields by drafting and blocking, staring blankly
: > or reacting aggressively when...uh...instructed otherwise, and raising
: > the risk for everyone, including you and I.   It's not just a "threat",
: > it's reality and I don't like it.  
: >
: >
: > Wade Blomgren

: >

: Wade,

: With all due respect, using this analogy, the next time that I am going to play
: pick-up ice-hockey, I think I'll just haul off and deck the nearest guy to me
: with a right upper-cut. I see the pros doing it. I guess I can to.

: Sorry for the hyperbole.

Damn, I SWORE I would leave it at "I don't like it" and not rise to
the inevitable "Steve Fleck say draft good, you stupid" retort.  But I
can't do it!  I am pathetic.

Now how did I know you would use this particular analogy?  I know!
Because it's the only one you can think of (and it still doesn't fit).

With all due respect, everyone who plays *** no-check hockey knows the
rules about *** or is quickly educated (your analogy would hold up
a bit better if you said body check instead of uppercut since last I looked
they still dish penalties for fists to the face in the NHL, despite the
Nielsen cachet).  I think you would grant that it is also much easier to
officiate, educate, and enforce with an official to contestant ratio
of 1/4 or 1/12 than, say, 0/500, not to mention the actual consequences for
violations (penalties, expulsion from the game or the league, or getting
your ass kicked in the parking lot after the game.)  So, hyperbolic analogy
not accepted :-).

And before you say "but I said pickup ice hockey - no officials"... I
don't do "pickup" triathlons (well, I do, but it's called training and
since I don't train with idiots who don't know the rules (of the road, of
the trail, of the pool, or how to draft safely) the danger of misapplied
uppercuts...I mean touched wheels...is greatly reduced).

Wade

 
 
 

Wilkes-Barre pro-draft a la St. Anthony's '97 - ITU infection continues...

Post by Alison Kepl » Sat, 30 May 1998 04:00:00

Way to go, Chaz and Wade!  We triathletes need more people who will
stand up for what we beleive in!

I fully support pros from any country in their Olympic dream, and I know
if I was that talented I would do what I had to in order to get there.
But I wish the ITU would stay _out_ of races that have been traditionally
draft-free, why not develop some new pro races that allow drafting, and
not put race directors in the middle of the storm?  I think there is room
 for both, but the way I see it is that the ITU is completely trying to
muscle out any draft-ILLEGAL racing for pros.

It is obviously to me that the ITU doesn't give a hoot about age groupers.
That is too bad, because who do they think is interested in triathlon?
I hope they're not naive enough to think that just because draftathon
is an Olympic sport that people will flock to it in droves.

Yes, I think draft-legal races will hurt the sport overall.  It already
has by creating a division with such passion on both sides.  Can't we
all just get along? :-)

Alison Keple
Mill Bay, BC

 
 
 

Wilkes-Barre pro-draft a la St. Anthony's '97 - ITU infection continues...

Post by Iron Pe » Sat, 30 May 1998 04:00:00

People know my attitude here on drafting; it is a shame that one of our
foundation races in the US is corrupted this way. I paid for the event this
year due to its inclusion in the Penn-Jersey Triathlon Series. I just hope they
keep the Pros and the Amateurs apart, doing their separate races,  with no
intermingling. I also hope that they enforce the no-drafting rules in our race
(Amateurs). There is nothing more scary than having a couple of people
millimeters apart while doing 25 miles per hour.

Here we go again...

"Iron Pete" Priolo        +--------+
                          |26      |
IMC'96: 10:36:37          |   Fe   |   '98 IMC, GCT, BSLT
IMC'97: 10:42:53          |        |
                          +--------+
                 "THE BEST ELEMENT OF RACING"

 
 
 

Wilkes-Barre pro-draft a la St. Anthony's '97 - ITU infection continues...

Post by Tricia Richt » Sat, 30 May 1998 04:00:00


Quote:

> People know my attitude here on drafting; it is a shame that one of our
> foundation races in the US is corrupted this way. I paid for the event this
> year due to its inclusion in the Penn-Jersey Triathlon Series. I just hope
> they keep the Pros and the Amateurs apart, doing their separate races,  with
> no intermingling.

 *snip*

Pete succinctly illustrates here one of the saddest things about the
infiltration of the drafting bug in triathlon.  We used to be so proud of
the fact that we age groupers got to be out on the same courses with our
heroes, the pros, experiencing the same challenges as they did (albeit at
considerably slower speeds).  Now, however, we find ourselves fervently
expressing the hope that we'll be kept separate.

I can't think of any other sport where age groupers and professionals are
allowed to compete together over the same course.  Now triathlon is
becoming just like the other sports.  Woohoo.

Thank heaven for Ironman.

Tri-Baby

                                     _
                                  -    o
     '             -  __o       -    </\_
 `     '         -    \<         - __/\
   /\o_         - (()) (())        -  /
^^^^^^^^^^    

"REAL Triathletes don't draft."
*** Ironman Canada 1997 - 13:04:09 ***
http://www.stanford.edu/~brooksie        

 
 
 

Wilkes-Barre pro-draft a la St. Anthony's '97 - ITU infection continues...

Post by Me » Sun, 31 May 1998 04:00:00

Quote:

> Way to go, Chaz and Wade!  We triathletes need more people who will
> stand up for what we beleive in!

> I fully support pros from any country in their Olympic dream, and I know
> if I was that talented I would do what I had to in order to get there.
> But I wish the ITU would stay _out_ of races that have been traditionally
> draft-free, why not develop some new pro races that allow drafting, and
> not put race directors in the middle of the storm?  I think there is room
>  for both, but the way I see it is that the ITU is completely trying to
> muscle out any draft-ILLEGAL racing for pros.

> It is obviously to me that the ITU doesn't give a hoot about age groupers.
> That is too bad, because who do they think is interested in triathlon?
> I hope they're not naive enough to think that just because draftathon

I hate drafting as much than anyone but why don't you go and watch the
race and maybe you'll see something thats not what you think.

CURLOO Australia

 
 
 

Wilkes-Barre pro-draft a la St. Anthony's '97 - ITU infection continues...

Post by PTBro » Sun, 31 May 1998 04:00:00

Wilkes-Barre is still going to be the same race for the rest of you. But, in
order for the US to send more than 1 person to the Olympics, we need
points!!!!! (ITU points).

Most pros can't afford to travel that much out of the country to get these
points, and I think that it is great that a few race directors are offering
their support and allowing us to race closer to home.

We need more draft races in order for us to gain experience. In other countries
(ie. Brazil, Mexico, Chile, Australia, Spain etc) every pro field race is draft
legal. And thier athletes are gaining valuable experience.

If I had my choice, I would love there to be no drafting. We as athletes have
the right to choose which race to do and not to do. But I have a hard time
seeing that if a race director allows drafting for the pros, the race will
become less enjoyable for the rest of you.

There have always been different rules for the pros.(ie. wetsuit rules, passing
zones, blocking, even different courses). So even without drafting, it is hard
for ameteurs to compare their times to the pros.

I hope that because a few race directors choose to help us by offering us the
chance to gain valuable points and experience, you choose to still participate
in these events, and have fun out there!

Pat (one of the young pros living on $10,000)