In Minnesota it’s Better to be Lucky than Fast

Last week I saw an article on Minnesota Tri News where Jerry talked about how excited he was for the upcoming triathlon season. In Minnesota, that means several ultra-competitive Duathlons before the water is close to being a ‘swimmable’ temperature.

With the onset of race season in Minnesota, that also means the beginning of all the race give-aways from Gear West Bike & Tri. We would love to be the originator of this idea, but we can’t.  But we do get to claim that we give away the largest amount of prizes (variety and dollar amount) to the every-day non elite athletes that attend each of these races.

This past weekend, I spent nearly 4 hours putting together the Gear West Gear Bags that will be given away at 26 races as well as the 7 pairs of Zipp/SRAM wheels, the 25 Blue Seventy or Aquasphere Wetsuits, the 9 Kurt Kinetic Trainers, One Lexa Road Bike, the more than $4,000 in gift certificates, the $3,000 in Bib numbers, and the nearly $11,000 in swim caps. The total dollar amount on the give-aways is $41,530 and the swim caps/numbers is $13,880.

Just as I was finishing, one of my boys came out to get me for dinner. His eyes popped when he saw all of the Gear Bags and he said “can I have one?” He was a little disappointed when I shot him down, but then he started guessing on how much the bag was worth. Like most kids, he doesn’t have a keen eye when it comes to the value of an item, so he started guessing at $45. He kept going up, but almost didn’t believe me when I told him $600 per bag. He counted the bags and (being quite good at math) came up with the figure of $15,000 for 25 bags. Boy he made me proud.

After getting this stuff ready, I realized that I should stop training so hard (since I can’t win any races anyway) and simply attend more races. In all the years I have raced my top earnings for a season is $1,200. I am not complaining about that, but if I would win just one set of Zipp wheels I would be ahead of that. A gear bag every few seasons would leave me ahead. With all these races, the number of opportunities to win is amazing. Just think, there are 27 races with about 120 different winners and the prizes that I am counting start at $100 and go up to $2,000.

Although I am excited to see the competition this year, I am just as excited to see who is going to win the prizes. Minnesota has the most competitive athletes in the country. We have the most multisport races in the country. We also have some of the very best run events in the country. And we certainly have the best race day give-aways in the country. What is better than getting something for nothing? Not much. Once again at each race I enter this year I will be hoping my number is drawn. After all someone has to win and it might as well be me!

In Minnesota it is better to be lucky than fast.

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