Congratulations to RRR members Kate Tormey, Bruce Yang, Mitch Pollack, Gokhan Ozuner and Bill Carpenter for completing the Ironman U.S. Championship triathlon race on Aug. 11. All their hard work was rewarded with outstanding performances in the 140.6-mile endurance test.
Held for the first time in New York City and vicinity, the race began with a 2.4-mile swim in the Hudson River near the George Washington Bridge, continued with a hilly 112-mile bike ride encompassing two counterclockwise loops of the Palisades Interstate Parkway through New Jersey and Rockland County, and culminated with a 26.2-mile marathon incorporating steep ascents along park service roads, crossing the GW Bridge and finishing in Riverside Park along the Hudson.
Conditions were inhospitable, to say the least. A broken sewage line in Tarrytown earlier in the week resulted in several million gallons of chlorinated raw sewage emptying into the Hudson. Race officials ultimately deemed the water safe to swim in, and the triathletes heaved a collective sigh of relief. But no relief was forthcoming on race day, which saw temperatures climb into the mid-80s with brutal humidity. One competitor, a 43-year-old man from Hong Kong, died after experiencing distress near the end of the swimming leg.
Despite the unfavorable elements, our intrepid multi-sport athletes mastered the three diverse disciplines exceedingly well. Kate Tormey paced the RRR group with a final time of 12 hours, 7 minutes, 46 seconds to place 19th in her age division. Her splits were 52:23 for the swim, 5:55:43 for the bike, and 5:03:18 for the run.
Bruce Yang was next with a clocking of 12:44:41 (1:02:38/ 7:01:16/ 4:24:56). Mitch Pollack followed soon after Bruce, finishing in 12:45:29 (52:19/ 6:40:18/ 4:53:48). Gokhan Ozuner, an ultramarathon veteran, completed the journey in 13:55:24 (1:00:43/ 7:18:23/ 5:08:39), and Bill Carpenter also dipped under the 14-hour mark in 13:58:51 (58:26/ 7:33:05/ 4:56:16). Bravo to all five of these stoic athletes.
Above, from left to right:
1. Bill Carpenter biking down the palisades
2. Bill Carpenter with Town Line Road in the background
3. Bruce Yang is an Iron Man
4. Bruce Yang at check-in