Where Is The Love?

[caption id="attachment_6803" align="alignright" width="264"]endurancesports_media_news_triathlon Source: Powerbar[/caption] Where is the love from the mainstream?  Where is just a simple article or mention of the sport of triathlon from the big guys?  For some reason last night I was going through ESPN and clicking on different links when I thought to myself:  Does ESPN have anything about triathlon?  How about coverage of Kona or the fact that Challenge Family is announcing a new race every other day? Here is what I found out when I went through ESPN.com, CNNSI.com, FoxSports.com and CBSSports.com: ESPN:
  • Clickable links to the following sports: recruiting (that's a sport?), poker, cricket, rugby, bowling.
    • Call me crazy but none of these sports is really that much bigger and certainly not better than triathlon or endurance sports in general.  If we were in Australia or New Zealand then yes Rugby but it is certainly not a bigger sport than triathlon here in the United States.
  • ESPN does have a twitter account for their Endurance section.  The twitter account is: @ESPN_Endurance and has only been around since May of this year.  A following of 1,145 and a total of 103 Tweets.
  • No writers for their endurance section or blog.  All of the posts on this section appear to be syndicated from Triathlete.com, VeloNews.com and Competitor.com.
  • Clickable links to Bowling.  I guess this sport is bigger in the US than I originally thought.  I know I watched it on ABC's Wide World Of Sports as a kid.  I was a county doubles champion when I was 12 and joined a league last year for a few months but I find it hard to believe this would generate more interest than an endurance section.
  • Cricket.  Really?  Cricket is so popular in the United States that it gets a link over endurance sports?  I am sure there are stories about cricket players over-coming pain and agony but endurance sports is built on them.  Talk to anybody in the transition area of a triathlon and they have a story to tell.  One of over-coming alcohol or drug dependence.  Others looking to lose weight and still others wanting to challenge their bodies and minds.
  • Air Racing.  I have not clue what this could be and did not even bother clicking on the link because my patience had been fully tested at this point.
I guess kudos should go to ESPN for having the most coverage of the sport of triathlon and endurance sports in general but it is a fairly weak section.  All of the information there is just re-hashed and nothing new or poignant.  I bring up the poignant part because this morning while watching SportsCenter there was a story about a boy with autism who is on his high school football team kicking field goals.  Maybe its the offseason and my body is all out of whack or maybe it was just a touching story but I got choked up watching this boy and his parents talk about playing football and what it means.  Yesterday, ESPN carried a story about Justin Tuck wearing a bracelet in honor of a kid he met who died from cancer.  It was touching and I thought what about all the stories of people racing for others. If you read Susan Lacke at all you will know that she has a friend (Carlos Nunez) who is battling cancer.  He is the one that led Susan into the sport of triathlon and clearly he knew what he was talking about because she is an Ironman and a tremendous author in helping us Age Groupers stay grounded in the sport.  Recently, Susan was training for a Boston Marathon qualifying time but has now scrapped that so that she can race with Carlos at Ironman Arizona in 2013.  Carlos is a 13-time Ironman and is an inspiration to me even though I have never met the man.  His ability to fight the good fight and live his life his way is incredible. Read a few articles from Susan about Carlos:
ESPN, CBS, FOX, CNN please stop skipping over triathlon and endurance sports and find somebody (even me) to focus on writing the inspirational stories that exist.  In a world full of obesity, alcohol and drug abuse, depression, etc we need to have those feel good stories that lead us to do things that we once thought were impossible.  Endurance sports gives people a shot in the arm, and not just the athletes.  Go to an Ironman race and watch the spectators and volunteers.  They are just as excited as the athletes.
Jason Bahamundi

About the Author:

I grew up in New York and lived there for 34 years until I got divorced and moved 1600 miles to my new home in Texas.  I love New York and miss it but that does not mean that Texas hasn’t been great to me because it has.  It was here that I discovered endurance sports and specifically the sport of triathlon.  Triathlon has given me new life through all the challenges it presents.  I no longer look at life the same way and I can say that is in part due to my endeavor into this sport.

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