The 70.3 Half Ironman Triathlon & Chapter  FL1-S Rally

Saturday November 10th was a busy day for many of our chapter members. This day would consist of two annual events that our chapter takes part in. The Half Ironman 70.3 Triathlon in Clearwater and Chapter FL1-S's rally in Brooksville.

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For those members that participated in the portion of the Ironman bike ride, there was a 5:45 AM riders meeting before we headed out to the area on the beach were the event was to start. Unlike last year, the weather this year was much cooler (50 degrees) when we started for the beach.  Fortunately, by the time the event had started, the sun had risen and the air temperature was starting to moderate. We couldn't help to think that these brave souls participating in the event were headed out into the Gulf of Mexico, were the water temperature was 68 degrees.  Then exit the water and run through the showers to was off the salt and then hop on their bikes for 56 miles. And if that wasn't enough, head back out for a 13.1 mile run. There are 1,624 athletes from 52 countries registered for the race,  443  women and 1181 were men. We probably had the best seats in the event, in that we ran the marshals around the bike course and were at most times within a few feet of the participants. I couldn't imagine how proud and determined that young man , who was a single leg amputee -a casualty of the war in Iraq, as he peddled his bike, up that steep incline and with just that one leg. He was just one of the participants that was an inspiration for all that took part in this event.  For a more detailed account of the event you can use the following link.

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Following this event some of our  members headed out to Brooksville in order to joy other members who were already at Chapter FL1-S's rally.   The 50's theme was quite fun and the turnout was very good. There was lots of food, prizes and fun. Our chapter won the award for having the largest representation. I suppose that if they had an award for those having the most fun we would have won it also.

Click here for more photos taken at the rally

As the sun headed toward the western horizon we headed back home. The ride down the rural roads, with an occasional wisp of burning oak from a fireplace, was very enjoyable. Enjoyable riding in Florida had finally arrived ! 

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