My luck and good fortune continues with the addition of my Ultraman Crew!
This photo was taken in November 2008 at about 5:30 am, just before I entered the chilly water of Tempe Town Center Lake for the Ironman Arizona race. That's my son Connor and my great friend, Kelvin Shields.
I am so glad to have my 16-year old son Connor to be on my crew. Connor will be assisting our Crew Captain, Kelvin Shields. Those of you who read my book, Iron Ambition, know all about Kelvin and how he has been a big part of my professional life and an ardent supporter of my ultra endurance ambitions. Kelvin has completed the Ironman 70.3 and multiple marathons. So Kelvin can relate to what I will be going through and that's really important.
Kelvin is not just a dear friend, but he is also an exceptionally well organized person, a great athlete, he loves to plan and most of all, he is trained in emergency medicine, which is reassuring. Kelvin is scrambling to get everything in order for our trip to Penticton, British Columbia, Canada and is talking with Darwin Holt about what it takes to be a great crew chief.
We have secured all the plane tickets, the hotel rooms, the Crew Vehicle. We need passports to enter Canada and are getting those updated as well. At this point, with only seven weeks remaining we are focused on learning as much as possible about how the crew can assist me through each leg of the three-day event. We will arrive in Penticton on Wednesday July 29th and return on August 5th.
My biggest concern is to just finish each day within the 12-hour cutoffs. Connor will make sure I am well hydrated and eating and Kelvin will navigate from our Crew Car / Support vehicle and make cetain that I am staying within a safe band of time that will insure I finish prior to the cutoffs, but not so quickly as to risk burning out later that afternoon or the next day.
Having Kelvin worry about the cutoffs is likely the most important thing of all for me because my mind will not be constantly racing making calculations about what it will take to finish under the wire every day.
My biggest concern used to be the bike, and still is. But my confidence is gaining rapidly that I can complete the 170 miles under the 12-hour cutoff.