Monday, May 20, 2013

Recap: Iron Girl Atlanta

Iron Girl Atlanta was cancelled due to severe weather. BOOOOOOOO!!

This was very disappointing. I guess Mother Nature just didn't want to cooperate. At all.

Everything started out ok. Saturday morning I woke up bright and early (read: 4am) to drop my husband off at the Augusta airport for his flight to San Diego. I then caught a little more sleep before heading to the Run as One 5k with Team RWB. I was planning on walking most of it so my legs would be fresh Sunday morning, so it was a pretty chill run. I then went home, finished all my packing, and hit the road. My GPS took the scenic route over the longer but faster highway route to Lake Lanier, so I got there right at 3, in time for the course talk.

I always like to go to the course talk for races because I usually can't see the entire prior. A few things changed for this race from last year, so I wanted to hit the talk again. The swim course apparently was planned to be a weird trapezoid shape that finished on the same beach that it is usually held on, and was going to be a bit shorter as well. Also, the day before the race was scheduled, water was 65 degrees. I think that's a bit chilly.

After browsing the expo a bit, my friend and I walked our bikes over to transition to drop them off. It's a pretty good 15 minute walk over there, which you have to do in the morning, so we just got a little extra familiar with it. We dropped our bikes off, picked up timing chips and straps, and headed to our hotel for dinner.

After dinner and laying everything out to make sure we weren't forgetting anything, I got in bed to read at about 8pm. Since I'm usually a little edgy, I had some chamomile tea, took a few notes to remind myself to check my tires in the morning, and fired up my Nook. I think I was asleep by 8:30.

Around 3, I woke up and noticed that it was raining. Really hard. Also, very loud thunder. And lots of lightning. Uh oh. Not good. After drifting in and out of sleep until my alarm went off at 5, I kind of knew this race wasn't going to happen. Iron Girl announced that the event was cancelled right before 5am, and sent it out through email, twitter, and facebook. I feel bad for everyone who showed up when transition opened at 4:30. A while later, they announced that transition would be opening to pick up bikes and turn in timing chips.

After a little more sleep and a hot breakfast, my friend and I headed back over to pick up our bikes. They were also handing out the finisher's medals. Do you think I should hang it up backwards, or just stash it away? Here's the swag we got from the race: my bib, swim cap (red wave), bike helmet number (my bike number was already on my bike), a strap for the timing chip, which had pink velcro and the Iron Girl logo, and finally, the race medal. It's not like they could reuse them.

We also got wristbands which were put on at checkin, and we wore all weekend to get in and out of transition, pick up our bikes, etc. It helped us identify our fellow pissed off people at breakfast the next morning.

I know this is the sort of thing the race directors have no control over whatsoever, and I'm kind of waiting to see what will come out of it. I plan on emailing and asking if they'll be offering maybe some sort of priority waitlist status for ones that are already sold out (read: Iron Girl Columbia) or a nominal discount for next year. I feel that most races have insurance for major cancellations like this. I'm sure a lot of people were very disappointed, and out a lot of money.

So, after a lazy day of Barnes & Noble, Cheesecake factory, and REI, I'm now checked in to my hotel near the Atlanta Airport and getting everything ready to go for my flight tomorrow. I can't wait for some awesome time in San Diego!

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