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2010-06-27 11:29 AM
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Subject: RE: Philadelphia Insurance Triathlon - Olympic Race : Official Thread
WCTri - 2010-06-26 6:34 PM be careful out there. the river has possibly taken one person this triathlon!


This is quite tragic, but let's not blame the river until we have the details.


2010-06-27 12:22 PM
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Subject: RE: Philadelphia Insurance Triathlon - Olympic Race : Official Thread
Someone on ST is reporting that they closed the course early due to heat issues.  Can anyone confirm this?  It is definitely a hot day; however, I didn't know they closed courses due to heat.  (I'm sure this race was made even hotter due to it changing to a du.  Running makes a body much hotter than swimming.)
2010-06-27 1:07 PM
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Subject: RE: Philadelphia Insurance Triathlon - Olympic Race : Official Thread
phillybarb - 2010-06-27 12:22 PM Someone on ST is reporting that they closed the course early due to heat issues.  Can anyone confirm this?  It is definitely a hot day; however, I didn't know they closed courses due to heat.  (I'm sure this race was made even hotter due to it changing to a du.  Running makes a body much hotter than swimming.)


I don't think so.  I was at the run turnaround and they came by at about 11 a.m. to tell us to close it down.  There may have been a few final people they pulled off the course, but the turnaround was down to one or two people every couple of minutes just before we packed it up. 
2010-06-27 1:23 PM
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Subject: RE: Philadelphia Insurance Triathlon - Olympic Race : Official Thread
Hmm, Rivercast was Red, swimmer goes missing....I think Lars might have a lawsuit coming his way if the guy doesn't turn up alive...

I
2010-06-27 1:32 PM
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Subject: RE: Philadelphia Insurance Triathlon - Olympic Race : Official Thread
jessm - 2010-06-27 2:07 PM
phillybarb - 2010-06-27 12:22 PM Someone on ST is reporting that they closed the course early due to heat issues.  Can anyone confirm this?  It is definitely a hot day; however, I didn't know they closed courses due to heat.  (I'm sure this race was made even hotter due to it changing to a du.  Running makes a body much hotter than swimming.)


I don't think so.  I was at the run turnaround and they came by at about 11 a.m. to tell us to close it down.  There may have been a few final people they pulled off the course, but the turnaround was down to one or two people every couple of minutes just before we packed it up. 


I finished in 3:07 and was in the last wave.  I was surprised when about 20 min later I heard them announce that the final runner was coming in and the course was closed.  The last wave was Clydes and 45-49 and 50-54.  Seems odd to me that they would only give the last wave 3:30 to finish the race.  Especially since it's the "larger" and somewhat "older" athletes... For what it's worth, I fall into both categories.

On a serious note... how very tragic for that athlete's family.  I read that his wife and his son were waiting for him at the swim exit.  So very sad.
2010-06-27 2:48 PM
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Subject: RE: Philadelphia Insurance Triathlon - Olympic Race : Official Thread
steel099 - 2010-06-27 2:23 PM

Hmm, Rivercast was Red, swimmer goes missing....I think Lars might have a lawsuit coming his way if the guy doesn't turn up alive...

I


Rivercast is an estimate of the water quality in the river, based on historical links between rainfall events and bacterial levels in the river water. It is not based on actual, real-time water quality testing. Even if bacterial levels WERE high (and I doubt that they were, or they certainly would have canceled the swim), that isn't something that's likely to cause a drowning....

My heart goes out to the family of the missing athlete, but a "Red" rating on Rivercast had nothing to do with whatever happened to him.


2010-06-27 3:24 PM
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Subject: RE: Philadelphia Insurance Triathlon - Olympic Race : Official Thread
steel099 - 2010-06-27 2:23 PM Hmm, Rivercast was Red, swimmer goes missing....I think Lars might have a lawsuit coming his way if the guy doesn't turn up alive...

I


There are a lot of reasons why this swimmer could have gone missing, pretty much all of them are not the result of bad race directing.  I think we need to wait for more information to be released before we start talking about lawsuits.
2010-06-27 5:36 PM
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Subject: RE: Philadelphia Insurance Triathlon - Olympic Race : Official Thread
I second those latest comments... this is one of the better run races you'll find. 
2010-06-27 7:32 PM
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Subject: RE: Philadelphia Insurance Triathlon - Olympic Race : Official Thread
I enjoy the race, too, and think its overall very well done - but I wouldn't want to be answering that question in front of a jury.
2010-06-28 4:52 AM
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Subject: RE: Philadelphia Insurance Triathlon - Olympic Race : Official Thread
Body of triathlete recovered and identifiedPosted:  06/27/2010 11:03 PM Derek Valentino, a mail carrier and father of two, had worked hard inpreparation for his first triathlon. He never really got the chance tocompete. Sunday night, almost 34 hours after Valentino entered the water forthe swim leg of an amateur sprint triathlon, police recovered his bodyin the Schuykill River. Valentino, 40, of Prospect Park, “worked veryhard for his family,” said a friend, Samantha Savukinas. He was the father of two boys, ages 15 and 17, and had been avidlytraining for Saturday’s event. “He tried very hard for the triathlon,and he’s very loved and will be missed,” said Savukinas. The search for Valentino’s body consumed most of the day yesterday andcanceled the swim leg of Sunday’s Philadelphia Insurance Triathlon,the main event on a weekend that drew scores of triathletes to thecity. Competitors instead ran two legs of the race and biked thethird. "We did it out of respect for the man's family," Richard Adler, racedirector, said of the change in plans. "The competitors were veryunderstanding.” Valentino worked for the U.S. Postal Service for about 20 years, saidSavukinas. He went into the water about 8:22 a.m. Saturday with a waveof about 100 swimmers in the 40- to 44-year-old age bracket. Theswimmers entered on the Martin Luther King Drive side of theSchuylkill, not far from Montgomery Avenue. They swam to ColumbiaAvenue bridge and returned to the spot where they had started, adistance of about a half mile. The police department’s marine unit recovered the body in the river at1500 Martin Luther King Drive, authorities said. A search was launchedfor the missing athlete after he failed to emerge by 9:40 a.m. Adlersaid that between lifeguards, kayaks, and marine boats, there were atleast 20 people watching the water at that time, but that no one sawanything unusual. "I think that we are probably considered one of the safest races outthere," Adler said. "But I think that this is, by nature, a dangeroussport. And I think the athletes know that going in. So we willabsolutely take a look at what we did, but I truly believe we werevery well covered out there, as we have been for the past six years." In a statement, Adler said all those involved in the triathlon “wantto extend our sincere and deepest sympathy to the participant'sfamily. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family at this difficulttime." From a competition standpoint, many athletes said that taking the swimout of the triathlon not only changed the playing field, but made itmore difficult to deal with the persistent humidity Sunday. None,however, questioned the decision to change the race from anOlympic-distance triathlon to a duathalon — which consists of a 10kilometer run, a 20K cycle, and finally another 5K run. "It was definitely the call they had to make," said Bevan Docherty,the two-time Olympic medalist who took home the men's title Sunday.
2010-06-30 1:35 PM
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Subject: RE: Philadelphia Insurance Triathlon - Olympic Race : Official Thread
The race was closed down due to safety issues with the heat.  I was in the medic tent when the lead doctor made the call.  The call was made due to the number of athletes that were coming in with heat stroke and heat exhaustion.  When my sister was being taken to the hospital their were 5 other athlete on their way.  They were clearly overwhelmed trying to deal with all the heat related issues.  It was a bad call to add the 3 mile run in the sun given the temperature at 97 not including the heat index.  They really needed more water stations especially in the long sections in the sun.  I am not impressed with the race officials--they clearly did not take proper precautions to keep their athletes cooled given the heat and considering they cut the cooling swim element of the triathlon.  I hope they will do a better job planning for this in the future.  They are lucky other athletes did not loose their lives on Sunday due to heat exhaustion.


2010-06-30 1:45 PM
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Subject: RE: Philadelphia Insurance Triathlon - Olympic Race : Official Thread
My thoughts are that we can all improve. I think alot of folks are plain under prepared and hoping they will do fine on the day. Many of us have to look our own selves in the eye and ask are we doing what needs to be done to survive/thrive on a day like that. I don't think many of us do.

Instead of blaming the heat, the RD, etc. we need to take responsibility for being fit for the challenge. I ran the whole day in the last wave so with the most heat and I kept seeing all the casualties and thinking that most of them probably weren't trained up.

Sorry for the rant but I just don't buy how the RD is at fault for a bunch of schlubs falling out during an olympic for crissakes.
2010-06-30 4:41 PM
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Subject: RE: Philadelphia Insurance Triathlon - Olympic Race : Official Thread
phatknot - 2010-06-30 2:45 PM My thoughts are that we can all improve. I think alot of folks are plain under prepared and hoping they will do fine on the day. Many of us have to look our own selves in the eye and ask are we doing what needs to be done to survive/thrive on a day like that. I don't think many of us do.

Instead of blaming the heat, the RD, etc. we need to take responsibility for being fit for the challenge. I ran the whole day in the last wave so with the most heat and I kept seeing all the casualties and thinking that most of them probably weren't trained up.

Sorry for the rant but I just don't buy how the RD is at fault for a bunch of schlubs falling out during an olympic for crissakes.


x2.

It was a hot, hard race, but with proper training, nutrition, and hydration, it wasn't anywhere near impossible, as evidenced by the more than 1,800 finishers.  Addiing the 2nd run only took the total run mileage up to 9.3, and the total amount of time most people were on the course wasn't much different than if there had been a swim.  And, the so-called cooling effect of the swim, isn't that great when the water temp is 84 degrees, and it ends once you're on the bike.  I'm proud to say that our Team in Training team only had 1 DNF, and that was because of the cutoff, not because they weren't prepared for the distance or hot conditions.


Edited by TriMyBest 2010-06-30 4:49 PM
2010-06-30 4:41 PM
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Subject: RE: Philadelphia Insurance Triathlon - Olympic Race : Official Thread

Double post.



Edited by TriMyBest 2010-06-30 4:49 PM
2010-07-01 12:19 PM
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Subject: RE: Philadelphia Insurance Triathlon - Olympic Race : Official Thread
I received the following as part of a post-race email from the RD:

We have received numerous emails from you expressing your hearfelt condolences to Derek's family.  He was a husband, father, a dedicated family man, and a public servant. His family has expressed great appreciation for the support which we have all been able to provide during this difficult time. For those of you who would like to send a message to his family directly we have set up an email address at dereksfamily@phillytri.com where you can send your thoughts and notes of condolence.  We will compile all of them and present to the family.
 
For those who would like to make a contribution, a fund has been set up on behalf of his two children.  You can make contributions to:  Memorial Fund for Ryan and Jordan Valentino c/o TD Bank, 2600 McDade Blvd.,  Holmes, PA  19043
 
Finally, viewing and service schedule is as follows:
 
-Viewing:  Friday night, July 2, 6-9 PM, Cavanaugh's Funeral Home, 301 Chester Pike, Norwood, PA
-Calling Hours:   Saturday morning 8:30-10:30 am, July 3 at Cavanaughs
-Funeral Service:  Saturday morning 11 am, St. Gabriel's Church, 223 Mohawk Ave., Norwood, PA

2010-07-02 8:10 AM
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Subject: RE: Philadelphia Insurance Triathlon - Olympic Race : Official Thread
I will agree with the fact that there should have been more water along MLK. They were unevenly spread out and having some misting spots or more water "could" have helped a lot.

I agree that training and being prepared is the best thing to do. However, being up near the front in the first few waves, I watched many "fit" 20-something guys drop on my way back to the finish. I train hard and in the heat and I was down from my estimated 6:45/mi to a friggin 8:15ish on the majority of the run back. It was just brutal, training or not.
(i.e. Andrew Yoder dropped out!)

My thoughts go out to to the victims family and friends.


2010-07-02 12:27 PM
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Subject: RE: Philadelphia Insurance Triathlon - Olympic Race : Official Thread
phatknot - 2010-06-30 2:45 PM My thoughts are that we can all improve. I think alot of folks are plain under prepared and hoping they will do fine on the day. Many of us have to look our own selves in the eye and ask are we doing what needs to be done to survive/thrive on a day like that. I don't think many of us do.

Instead of blaming the heat, the RD, etc. we need to take responsibility for being fit for the challenge. I ran the whole day in the last wave so with the most heat and I kept seeing all the casualties and thinking that most of them probably weren't trained up.

Sorry for the rant but I just don't buy how the RD is at fault for a bunch of schlubs falling out during an olympic for crissakes.


First, I think this is an overestimation and an oversimplification of the circumstances and your preperation.  You can't "train your way out" of any situation. Your body has limits.  We enter Triathlons to push those limits.  If we could do this sort of thing every day, it wouldn't be a challenge.

Second, you do not train for an endurance event like this in 97 degree weather. *If* you do train extensively, it's probably in low 90's tops, and maybe not at hard. (You always push harder in a race.

Third, we DO train for this, it's called a triathlon. I train for swim/bike/run. Not run/bike/run.

Lastly, no matter how much training you have, things can happen.  The heat can just get to to you. Maybe you're having an off day, or your electrolytes are out of balance. Whatever.
And say it only happens to 3% of the racers, you're still looking at almost 50 people.
I think it's inconsiderate to blame it on the athelete not "being prepared."


To the post about the RD not being prepared;  they only got word, at most, the night before that the race would have to be changed. That's not a lot of time to make changes and new setups.  This has never happened before, and it may have caught them off guard. It's a shame, and maybe the RD could have done more, but I don't blame them if there was a convergence of events (drowning/river closed, and excessive heat) at the same time.
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