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2013-11-04 9:38 AM
in reply to: nancylee

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Subject: RE: Is Ironman approaching the market price tipping point?

Originally posted by nancylee Disclaimer: I will NEVER do an Ironman. But $700 is a huge amount of money. It is a month's worth of groceries for a family of 4 where I live. That's going to promote the idea of Ironman as a rich man's sport. The bikes cost thousands. The training takes hours and hours. It already is a very expensive sport, even at the lower levels. The nice thing about a marathon is that all you really need is a good pair of sneakers and a couple of hundred dollars. It is a romantic race, an Everyman race. Everyman can see himself doing it, which is good for the sport. Not just because of the distance, but because of the cost, the Iron Man is not seen as an Everyman race. Which is great if you can do it. I am in awe of those who do. But it does not make the sport relatable. People are not going to clamor to have it on the networks, like the marathon was yesterday. It will have a limited audience, and the more expensive it gets, the more limited its appeal, which is not good for it, IMHO. I mean, how many polo matches do you watch? Horse jumping? Both super expensive sports, with no appeal to the common man. Is this the future of tris? Only appealing to those who participate? The sport will hit a limit someday. I hope it doesn't hurt it.


Actually, a lot. That is why I think triathlon is going to take a back seat. My first love is horseback riding.  Now I have to choose among those two, and I'd settle on doing both sports without competing.  Talk about expensive. My board for my horse was $550 a month!

2013-11-04 9:52 AM
in reply to: TriMyBest

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Dallas, TX
Subject: RE: Is Ironman approaching the market price tipping point?
Originally posted by TriMyBest

It's been a while since we've had a discussion about this.  They've raised the entry for IMFL 2014 another $50 over this year to a new high of $700.  (IIRC, four years ago for the 2010 race, it was about $500?)

I had two athletes who volunteered yesterday.  They were able to get their registration for next year at the race site this morning without any trouble, and didn't complain about the price tag.

Another athlete of mine planned on trying to get in online today, but when he saw that they raised the registration another $50 to $700, he and his wife decided it wasn't worth it, and pulled the plug at the last minute.  Instead, we're looking at a Rev3 event for him instead, because the cost is about $250 less, and their events tend to offer more for the athlete's family.

Since there are more options now, such as Rev3 and Challenge, do you think a lot more people will be likely to choose another event because of the escalating cost or maybe for other reasons too?


When certain IM's stop selling out in a few minutes, then it will approach its market price tipping point. Right now there are a lot of IM's that don't have any shortage of people signing up and paying the fees.

2013-11-04 10:04 AM
in reply to: Socks

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Subject: RE: Is Ironman approaching the market price tipping point?

Originally posted by Socks

I don't do IMFL because its branded I do it because its drivable and easy.  The housing is easy and cheep the venue is easy and my friends and family know it well.  I don't have a big drive to do a bunch of different races.  When my now 75 year old parents come they know where to go and what to do.  I have a busy ;life and I am willing to pay for easy. 


I'm in a similar situation.  IMFL is a 5.5 hour drive from my house, and is in an area where my wife and kid could be easily entertained for the day while I'm out abusing myself.  Not to mention my area where I train is very similar in both climate and terrain.

I imagine that if I ever decide to to a full, it'll be IMFL and I'll volunteer the year prior to be able to register. 

2013-11-04 10:29 AM
in reply to: wannabefaster

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Subject: RE: Is Ironman approaching the market price tipping point?
One would think that a marathon isn't a great spectator sport, but millions do watch it. I think it is because it appeals to the part of each of us who thinks we could do one one day.
2013-11-04 10:30 AM
in reply to: RussTKD

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Boise, ID
Subject: RE: Is Ironman approaching the market price tipping point?

I am signed up for my 1st IM, it will be IMCDA. I sucked it up and paid the fee for a few different reasons. 1, I may only do one IM. I can't say for sure how I will feel in the future but currently I kinda feel like this is a bucket list thing that I just want to get done. I enjoy the HIM distance and can see doing that more in the future, I haven't done the IM yet so can't say for sure if I will ever want to do it again. 

Part of the reason I think this is a one time deal is the price. But I signed up for the spendy one cause I want my 1 time to be awesome and I think the WTC will do a good job of putting on an awesome race.

Other reason for IMCDA is it is an 8 hr drive for me and I have family that live 3/4 of a mile from the start line. Free place to stay plus good location for my wife to get around and spectate, plus people for her to hang out with equals a win for me. I considered Tahoe but after hearing about the inaugural I think I made the right call on not doing that as a first. 

As we discussed in the "decline" thread, there may be less newbies and many people crossing the IM off the bucket list which could contribute to lower sign up numbers. Also once I do a WTC race if I want to do another IM I will likely look for a cheaper race. Kona does not interest me so I have no problem with a non branded race once I get my first experience out of the way. 

2013-11-04 10:36 AM
in reply to: RussTKD

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Austin, Texas
Subject: RE: Is Ironman approaching the market price tipping point?

As I've signed up for another WTC race for next year, I guess I haven't found my own personal tipping point yet.  Where that point will be, I don't know - but I do know that it's close especially when things like the $35 "service fee" from get added into the equation.  

I've done both WTC and non-WTC branded races (IMAZ and B2B) and I can tell you that I had a fantastic experience at both races, but for different reasons.  The short answer for ME is that there is no shortage of IM distance races now, and as long as I can continue to keep doing them, I'll most likely choose races based on where they take place.  My IM race is already set for next year (Chattanooga), but the DH is currently deciding between doing a Rev3, Challenge, or HITS race for a possible IM next year.   

2013-11-04 10:58 AM
in reply to: RussTKD

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Sarasota, FL
Subject: RE: Is Ironman approaching the market price tipping point?

If I ever do an IM it would be a bucket list type effort just to finish under the cut offs.  I've given some thought to doing Louisville, mostly because I still have a lot of family just across the river in southern Indiana and it might be nice to combine it with a family vacation.

One of the things about being a financially secure 60-year-old empty-nester with college tuitions in the rear-view mirror, is that I have a higher level of disposable income than a lot of folks.  So an entry fee in the $1K range wouldn't be a deterent for a one-time effort.   If I were a starving college student, still had young children at home, or was considering doing multiple races to attempt to KQ, I'm sure it would be a much tougher decision.

The tougher decision for me wouldt be deciding how to re-allocate my time commitments to work and my other hobbies/interests in order to provide enough time for IM training. (Not to mention praying that my body wouldn't fall apart along the way).


2013-11-04 12:58 PM
in reply to: TriMyBest

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Subject: RE: Is Ironman approaching the market price tipping point?
I'm surprised we don't see more demand based pricing at IM races. Sort of like sporting event tickets. The price of a Bulls vs. Heat game is not the same price as a Bobcats vs. Heat game. It's still an NBA game, and they still play four 12 minute quarters, but the price is different based on the known demand for each game.

So while some races could jack their prices up over $1000 and still sell out, it's not that way across the board.

Another thing I wouldn't be surprised to see is the WTC jack up their prices and give volunteers who want to sign up a discount. For example, if the current price is $650, jack up general entry to $800, but if you volunteer, you're a current year athlete, or on site, you're price is $650. Everyone else is $800 which are more likely the people that need to travel for the race. In that case, those are the people more willing to eat an extra $150 because it's just a drop in the bucket compared to their overall all in costs.

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