The Purpose of Cheating?

I have been wondering if I should blog about this, whether it would come out the wrong way (i.e. me being bitter) but I figured “Hey…what the Hell” and I am going to go ahead an do it.

While the Crystal River series is one of my faves there is something that gripes me that I noticed on the first one, but that came to a head on #2. Usually on races there are points along the course that”check” you as you go by … either electronically or by hand, to make sure people do not “cut the course”. This means taking stock that all riders and runners are doing the full length and are not going a shorter distance improving their times. I have wondered why someone would do this … you’re in this sport to improve yourself, get fit, etc. so what purpose would cheating like that fill? Just to get to stand on a stage and accept something (trophy, award) that you know you didn’t earn, while at the same time pushing someone out of the stage that DID earn it.

We saw this happen Saturday for the first time, though we had suspected it.

There is one guy (name withheld to protect the “innocent”) that we see at the pool often (part of a local triathlon team that we also belong to). He is about my weight (250-ish) but about 5’7″ and has a HUGE belly. He swims like a fish … very smooth with great breathing technique, and actually rides well also, but being our weight there is only so fast that we can run. I have been perplexed by him since we saw him at a race in Madeira. He ALWAYS beats me … and not by a little either … by A LOT. But only in one portion. He has me by about a minute in the swim, and averages over 20 mph on the bike (doubtful but believable).

But on the run …. Lord …. this guy must be superman ….

I run on running days at about 12:00-13:00 pace. This is while NOT swimming and biking before it. During a race I can get around 14:00.

I have seen other tri-athlete friends on Daily Mile run at 8:30 pace. Moving quick by my standard, and they are IN SHAPE.

I watched as this certain person got called to the stage as #5 in the Clydesdale’s. He is standing up there with others 10-15 years younger than he is and BUILT. He beat other guys that we equally as built and in shape. So We started wondering what his times were. When they posted we looked it up.

His pace on the run was 9:00.

9:00 ?????

AFTER swimming and biking ?????

We saw this guy start the run … there is NO way he was moving at a 9:00 pace. That’s only 30 seconds slower than Jen B. and KC, and they are RUNNERS.

What started sticking in my head was when I was walking at the beginning of the run I was behind two elite level guys that were finished and were walking back along the course to encourage others (one reason I LOVE this sport) and they were commenting on a guy they saw cut the course (they described him to a T because they said he was wearing a ‘TEAM insert name TRI SUIT’) and they were wondering what the purpose of cheating in an event like this would be.

I don’t understand it either. Maybe some fellow Tri’ers reading this can explain? I went to the DRC website and on feedback just said that people were seen cutting the course on the run and ended up placing so they need to start checking people at turnaround points. Nothing else I can do right?

I am FAR away from standing on the stage. I finished 10th this time and just to finish 9th I’d have to cut 20 minutes off my time, so it’s not that I would have finished any better than I did, but if I ever get to that level I would want to be damn sure I earned it. What’s the use of getting recognized for something you didn’t earn?

Can someone enlighten me???

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