Friday, December 19, 2008

Foot In Mouth Disease

Very nice to see a good news item regarding our beloved sport of triathlon in the Sports Business Daily yesterday:

Triple Threat: Triathlon Not Being Slowed By Economic Crisis
During the current economic crisis, triathlon is "thriving ... from the beginner's sprint distance to the veteran's Ironman," according to Don Norcross of the SAN DIEGO UNION-TRIBUNE. USA Triathlon this year has seen its membership increase 15% to 115,000 and the World Triathlon Corp. has "jumped from 16 half-Ironman races in 2006 to 34" this year. Also, Triathlete magazine's circulation has climbed to 70,000, a 10% annual increase. Norcross noted what makes the sport's "mushrooming growth more fascinating" is that it "takes serious bank to race triathlons." The N.Y. Triathlon last summer raised the entry fee for its '09 race from $175 to $225, and "sold out the 4,000-plus spots in less than 30 minutes." Also, the '09 Ford Ironman Arizona, at $500 per entry, "sold 2,000 spots in one day." Industry sources said that there are "multiple reasons why the multi-sport is faring well." Demographics "play a part" -- Triathlete Publisher John Duke said that the average household income of the magazine's subscribers is $177,000. Duke: "I don't think they're the people getting laid off. They're the people laying off." Norcross also noted "high-end bikes are still being pedaled out the front door." California cycling store B&L Bike & Sports Owner Jeff Rowe: "We haven't seen the hit car salesmen have seen" (SAN DIEGO UNION-TRIBUNE, 12/12).

Unfortunately, I find Mr. Duke’s comment to be terribly insensitive and narrow-sighted…this economic crisis is hitting every family no matter their demographic status and/or professional position. I happen to know quite a few triathlete, executive level, top earners (including myself) who are finding themselves without a job at this time.
“Triathlete Publisher John Duke said that the average household income of the magazine's subscribers is $177,000. Duke: "I don't think they're the people getting laid off. They're the people laying off."”


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