Palm Springs, California
In 2018, we saw the addition of the race at Indian Wells. This race featured a very cold swim at 55 degrees F, and a flat fast bike course with a rolling run course on a golf course. This is not for the faint of heart with the swim course being very unique. It’s like a large V, you have to go through the middle of the V, no running the tangents here. With the cold water, officials knew before the race ever started that athletes would be in wetsuits, but they did NOT, have wetsuit strippers. Why?! No one knows. Imagine you just swam 1.2 miles in the coldest water you’ve ever swam in, only to get out and have to take off a neoprene cap, booties, and your wetsuit on your own. This sounds like an experience everyone should do right. Oh wait, you also have to put your stuff in a bag, toss it over a wall on your way out of transition because this is a split transition race. The quality of the roads here are rough. So rough that the race officials changed the course days before the race to ‘better’ roads. The course went by dogs that were attacking athletes. Lack of security in transition coupled with athletes who were forced to take shuttles to the start raised their anxiety giving them only minutes in transition to prepare their bikes yielded at least one bike being sabotaged. There were some controversial issues surrounding this race among some of the competitors. On the run course, the aid stations on the run ran out of ice and sponges before the normal 5:30 finish time crowd even got to the run. If you were behind this you were shit out of luck. I feel bad for the athletes who got to be the experiment in 2018. Many were left feeling shafted and/or cheated. I look forward to this race improving over the next few years. But because of all of this, I would not do this race.
Would I do this race? No