[edited to add (Sept. 29, 2009): I’ve gotten a number of hits to this page in the past few days, presumably because the Westchester Tri was this past week-end. Held in the rain, it apparently involved very hazardous seas and a tough bike. I congratulate a few people I know who did it. Apropos to what I wrote about 2007, the run course has now changed. So far as I can tell, additional mileage has been added and it is closer to 10K. Given the slow times — unlike the swim and the ride it the rain should have enhanced performances — the course may have been too long.]

I sometimes check-out the Westchester Triathlon Club site. There’s a thread on slots being kept open at the Westchester Triathlon for certain people willing to pony up extra cash for either a charity or, and this is nuts to me, by paying $495 to participate in a training program.

So I posted something about it in the WTC Forum. That race is already pretty pricey, and although you get a nice shirt (which I happen to be wearing right now because it’s a bit chilly), creating this extra fee doesn’t seem right. I wonder the extent to which the Westchester Tri community will raise a fuss.

SSRMC Relay, 2007 Westchester Tri, Dave, Bob, and me

SSRMC Relay Team, 2007 Westchester Tri, Dave, Bob, and me

I did the run portion of the 2007 Westchester Tri, and it was fun. I came out with a great deal of respect for those who had done all three disciplines, although I am skeptical that civilians can devote the time necessary to perform the best at each of them. I find it tough enough to do that just for running.

But in that race, the “10K” run was about 1/4 mile short, based upon my time and what someone else’s Garmin said. I also spoke to JR, a fine local runner and the wife of the guy who measured it with his wheel, and she shared my amazement that they would ignore the real distance of the run, and I knew it was measured correctly because the mile splits through 5 were spot on. There was no mile 6 mark. (To qualify as a certain type of tri, the swin, bike, and run must be within certain ranges.)

So I raised the issue with the race director. It fashions itself the “Premier Race in the Northeast.” I was blown off: the race didn’t care, no correction to the distance would be made (although, strangely, the results went out of their way to point out that the swim was too short). Then most triathletes to whom I spoke said that they didn’t care how accurate the course-measurement was, that they’re always off. For a runner, of course, this was inconceivable.

This has long bugged me. These folks work really, really hard. How could they not care?