MICHAEL LOVATO | Professional Triathlete




Trakkers Pro Team Launch: Our Fuel and our Duel

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Saicony car

Many of you have probably heard about this already; in fact, many of you have tweeted about it already. For those of you who have not – and for those of you who do not believe it – the rumors are now confirmed: Team Trakkers has challenged the Trek/Kswiss team to a duel at Rev 3 Knoxville.  And they have stepped up and accepted our dare!

2010 is shaping up to be the year of the team in the sport of triathlon, and Team Trakkers will not be outdone.  While gathering for our Pro Team launch this past weekend in Austin, Texas, our competitive spirits – and the Shiner Bock – got the best of us, and we threw down the Five-Thousand-Dollar Challenge.

Our beer-and-pizza happy hour on Friday night served multiple purposes: we were there to meet one another; we were there to meet with our sponsors; we were there to talk about the season; we were there to meet the public; and, of course, we were there to have some fun.

Somewhere along the way, we got caught up in a little trash talk, and while managing to accomplish all of the above, we also got ourselves signed up for a bit of a schoolyard brawl on May 9th.

But before any of these antics got underway, Dede Griesbauer, Richie Cunningham, Brian Fleischmann, Amanda Lovato, Jacqui Gordon, Carole Sharpless, and I all went through the rigors of a full-blown Liz Kreutz photo session.  Kreutz – the photographer who chronicled Lance Armstrong’s Comeback 2.0 last year – directed and managed our shoot, while making sure that each and every one of us had top-quality images for our websites and our Trakkers promos.  Liz is a true professional, and being the subject of her photos is a fun and smoothly run experience.

No team camp would be complete without a few training sessions, and for good measure, we were sure to throw in a few swim, bike, runs. Friday morning got under way with a nice dip in 68-degree spring fed Barton Springs Pool.  Even with the upcoming races for three of our teammates, the tone of the workout was lighthearted.  We rewarded ourselves with a post-swim coffee and breakfast over at Austin Java Co., one of the locals’ favorite spots.

The next morning, we donned our green kits once again to lead a group ride through the hills of Austin. Each team member, and a few lucky extras, got to test out the Trakkers devices, which meant proving to everyone who watched the playback just how fast (or slow!) we rode the course.  Everyone agreed that Trakkers is going to change the way we view our sport—big time!

Saturday afternoon gave us the opportunity to slow it down a bit, and to showcase our generous Team Sponsors: Saucony, First Endurance and Kestrel.  At our Expo, Carrie Bartlett showed off the 2010 Saucony line, while allowing folks to test out the shoes; Robert Kunz handed out samples of EFS and Ultragen, while answering anyone’s nutrition-related questions; and four fully decked Kestrel Airfoils were on display for all to see.

As the expo closed out, our team gathered for one more group session: a short run around Town Lake.  Testing out our new green race kits, we jogged about, while Jay Prasuhn of Lava Magazine willingly followed behind with his camera.  Naturally our conversation turned back to the challenge we had laid out before us.

Challenges are what triathlon is all about.  Sometimes it’s a challenge to finish a tough day; sometimes it’s a challenge to beat your neighbor; and sometimes it’s the challenge of setting a new PR.  But in almost all cases, those challenges are all worthwhile because of the people we get to share them with. And in this particular case, Trakkers Pro Team is excited to share a season of challenges with one another, with our Amateur Team, and with all of our supporters and sponsors.  And we really look forward to kicking the pants off the Trek/ KSwiss team next month!

Challenge Rules:

Two Teams compete.

Top two men finishers count; top one female counts (per team).

Cross Country scoring: overall place counted as points, lowest point total wins.

Winning team gets $5000 from Trakkers, to be spilt amongst team members competing.

1 Comment(s)

Scott Skalny on 4/15/10 said:

i can’t wait to see the results of the challenge!!

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