Reflecting on the 2014 IBO World Championship I recalled the two other world championships. In those I placed 24th then, a year later, 4th. What I’ve learned from other sports I’ll apply to archery and see where it leads. Considering another two other world championships, duathlon and triathlon, it occurred to me I’ve been lucky in sports.
Cycling was good too me and for me. Through cycling I got to experience my first National Championships and race outside of the US. It also provided a foundation to expand into other athletic endeavors.
Some friends I trained with decided they’d do a triathlon. I’d trained with the top triathletes in the world while cycling, four of them world champions, two considered the greatest of all time and one the greatest age group finisher, Bruce Buchanan. All of these folks were very fit. I joined my friends’ group of would be triathletes.
While they trained for a triathlon, I relearned how to run and swim. Running I could go great distance at a slow pace. That paid off at a long course duathlon. The race was a qualifier for the USA Team to the World Championships. The day was hot, nearly 100 degrees, temperatures I’d trained in all my life. Essentially, I got lucky; the heat didn’t bother me as much as the faster athletes. I placed 3rd place, qualifying for the USA Team.
That World Championship was an experience. Being in the parade of countries during the opening ceremony, the colors, and the fans were amazing. As amazing as it was it didn’t compare with the Ironman World Championships in Kona, HI.
The Ironman World Championship is the Super Bowl of triathlons. Thousands of fans line the course and the finish on Ali’i Drive is iconic. For many it is an experience of a lifetime. The race is hot, beautiful, exciting, long, painful, fun, emotional and windy. Crossing the finish line and being greeted by my wife, she escorted by crowd of dancing children was truly remarkable.
Shooting at the IBO World Championship was number five of the world championship events I’ve competed. Honestly, I wasn’t ready. Still, I’d qualified, could drive to the event and it would be great preparation for 2015, when I hope to be more ready.
Of these five world championships my best finish, cycling, was 4th. My worst finish was in archery. The longest training effort to reach a world championship was cycling while he shortest was archery. The results align with the time and effort. But, like the duathlon championship, I got lucky and was able to compete. Opportunities like a world championship are few, I figure if you can take the shot.