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2013-06-16 9:15 PM

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Subject: No more 3D events for me
Just finished the Motor City Tri today with 3D. To sum it up, it will be my last event with 3D.


2013-06-16 9:41 PM
in reply to: coreycs

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Subject: RE: No more 3D events for me
Im curious, y?
2013-06-17 7:29 AM
in reply to: Shortyy

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Subject: RE: No more 3D events for me
Yes, please explain!
2013-06-17 11:18 AM
in reply to: coreycs

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Subject: RE: No more 3D events for me
The wait for awards and the raffle was loooooooooong. Enough to swear off them forever? Or was there something else?
2013-06-17 12:49 PM
in reply to: Miles around Midtown

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Subject: RE: No more 3D events for me
He's keeping us in suspense...

My only complaint was with the parking. I always try to roll in at the last minute and I ended up a good mile from registration. Then I saw a bunch of other late arrivals parking on Picnic Way, which was part of the course. Not sure 3D has many options if the Grand Prix is still taking up the big parking lots.
2013-06-17 8:10 PM
in reply to: Jay-Z

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Subject: RE: No more 3D events for me
Okay here we go.

There are just a few things that left a sour taste in my mouth.

-It started with checking in, no bike decals?!?! I could have walked out of transition with a real nice bike if I was that type of person
-Course safety, ie, concrete chuncks and merging the run leg right up against the bike leg in some locations.
-Screwing up the results. I checked the results several times before awards and it showed that I placed 3rd in my age group, then when the awards come up some cat that wasn't even on the list ended up placing 3rd in front of me?!?!, Not that big of a deal except I stood around thinking I was placing third, I would have left earlier.
-Some of the Volunteers were rude to spectators, not very helpful when asking for directions
-Jersey Singlet was crappy, would rather of had an event t-shirt

Sorry for the rant. Just a few things that I had on my mind. Kinda pisses you off when you spend $90 on a Sprint and this is what you get.

All in all, I still had fun. Placed 26th overall and 4th in my age group.

Cheers,

Corey


2013-06-17 8:44 PM
in reply to: #4778061


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Subject: RE: No more 3D events for me
You will always have to wait for awards and raffle at bigger events, that's how they keep people there. If they did awards early everyone would leave before the last 20 people finish and then those people would be pissed. There is not really a way to keep fast and back of pack people both happy.
At hawk island this year the elite men and women were finished by 9:15 and awards didn't start until 11:30.
2013-06-18 9:47 AM
in reply to: Swimmer98

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Subject: RE: No more 3D events for me
Originally posted by Swimmer98

You will always have to wait for awards and raffle at bigger events, that's how they keep people there. If they did awards early everyone would leave before the last 20 people finish and then those people would be pissed. There is not really a way to keep fast and back of pack people both happy.
At hawk island this year the elite men and women were finished by 9:15 and awards didn't start until 11:30.


Yes, but the folks who put on Hawk Island make all of the waiting worth it. The course is clearly marked, super safe and the volunteers are extremely friendly and well informed. I always stay until the bitter end at Hawk Island (even though I am no where close to placing in my age group) just because it's such a fun race. And they have plenty of yummy recovery food to keep me busy while I wait to cheer in the final racer and applaud the winners.
2013-06-18 10:06 AM
in reply to: kathmich

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Subject: RE: No more 3D events for me
Originally posted by kathmich

Originally posted by Swimmer98

You will always have to wait for awards and raffle at bigger events, that's how they keep people there. If they did awards early everyone would leave before the last 20 people finish and then those people would be pissed. There is not really a way to keep fast and back of pack people both happy.
At hawk island this year the elite men and women were finished by 9:15 and awards didn't start until 11:30.


Yes, but the folks who put on Hawk Island make all of the waiting worth it. The course is clearly marked, super safe and the volunteers are extremely friendly and well informed. I always stay until the bitter end at Hawk Island (even though I am no where close to placing in my age group) just because it's such a fun race. And they have plenty of yummy recovery food to keep me busy while I wait to cheer in the final racer and applaud the winners.
The only 3D event I have done is the Ludington Lighthouse Triathlon, but it's been pretty much my favorite event for 3 years running. That is partially due to the venue, but I've just found the event to be well organized. I will say that I was a little bummed that in the last year or two they stopped serving pizza to the athletes at the finish line, and they've given some horribly ugly t-shirts, but to me those are small things.

Assuming I can get my leg healed up and back to training by late July, I am thinking of signing up for the 3D Michigan Championships on Belle Isle in September.
2013-06-18 10:46 AM
in reply to: MSU_Brad

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Subject: RE: No more 3D events for me
Originally posted by MSU_Brad

Originally posted by kathmich

Originally posted by Swimmer98

You will always have to wait for awards and raffle at bigger events, that's how they keep people there. If they did awards early everyone would leave before the last 20 people finish and then those people would be pissed. There is not really a way to keep fast and back of pack people both happy.
At hawk island this year the elite men and women were finished by 9:15 and awards didn't start until 11:30.


Yes, but the folks who put on Hawk Island make all of the waiting worth it. The course is clearly marked, super safe and the volunteers are extremely friendly and well informed. I always stay until the bitter end at Hawk Island (even though I am no where close to placing in my age group) just because it's such a fun race. And they have plenty of yummy recovery food to keep me busy while I wait to cheer in the final racer and applaud the winners.
The only 3D event I have done is the Ludington Lighthouse Triathlon, but it's been pretty much my favorite event for 3 years running. That is partially due to the venue, but I've just found the event to be well organized. I will say that I was a little bummed that in the last year or two they stopped serving pizza to the athletes at the finish line, and they've given some horribly ugly t-shirts, but to me those are small things.

Assuming I can get my leg healed up and back to training by late July, I am thinking of signing up for the 3D Michigan Championships on Belle Isle in September.


Those little things add up. It's like in the restaurant industry. Lots of buzz and excitement at a restaurant open, but unless they consistently produce a quality product with services and amenities similar to their competitors, at a similar price, they won't last. Consumers compare everything ..... was I greeted at the front door, were the restaurant and bathrooms clean, did I have a friendly waiter, are the prices reasonable, did I get free bread or crackers on the table, was my water refilled in a timely manner, how was the noise level, did the food taste good, was the temperature okay, and on and on and on.

It's the same with triathlon.....we observe and judge everything; cost, location, transition security, course safety and markings, proper race distances, swim start waves, swag, t-shirts, aid stations, volunteers, spectator numbers, post race food, awards, and the list goes on. Competition among race organizers is heating up. 3D had an early start, but unless they stop cutting corners and start paying more attention to what's important to their customers, they'll continue to lose market share. Two years ago I did three 3D races. Last year I did 1. This year I'm not doing any.

Pizza as a post race food should be mandatory in ALL triathlons :-) ...... So should Ice Cream, but I've never seen it :-(

One more mandatory post race aid should be a hose. At the Grand Rapids Tri two weekends ago they had a guy with a hose at the finish line tent. After finishing, it was a 20 ft walk to a tent canopy with about eight chairs under it, and it felt absolutely amazing to sit down, tilt my head back, and run the hose over my head for about 60 seconds. It was totally rejuvinating! Well done Andy Vidro ;-)
2013-06-18 11:59 AM
in reply to: DV 1

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Subject: RE: No more 3D events for me
Well stated, I agree!


2013-06-18 12:33 PM
in reply to: DV 1

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Subject: RE: No more 3D events for me
Originally posted by DV 1

Originally posted by MSU_Brad

Originally posted by kathmich

Originally posted by Swimmer98

You will always have to wait for awards and raffle at bigger events, that's how they keep people there. If they did awards early everyone would leave before the last 20 people finish and then those people would be pissed. There is not really a way to keep fast and back of pack people both happy.
At hawk island this year the elite men and women were finished by 9:15 and awards didn't start until 11:30.


Yes, but the folks who put on Hawk Island make all of the waiting worth it. The course is clearly marked, super safe and the volunteers are extremely friendly and well informed. I always stay until the bitter end at Hawk Island (even though I am no where close to placing in my age group) just because it's such a fun race. And they have plenty of yummy recovery food to keep me busy while I wait to cheer in the final racer and applaud the winners.
The only 3D event I have done is the Ludington Lighthouse Triathlon, but it's been pretty much my favorite event for 3 years running. That is partially due to the venue, but I've just found the event to be well organized. I will say that I was a little bummed that in the last year or two they stopped serving pizza to the athletes at the finish line, and they've given some horribly ugly t-shirts, but to me those are small things.

Assuming I can get my leg healed up and back to training by late July, I am thinking of signing up for the 3D Michigan Championships on Belle Isle in September.


Those little things add up. It's like in the restaurant industry. Lots of buzz and excitement at a restaurant open, but unless they consistently produce a quality product with services and amenities similar to their competitors, at a similar price, they won't last. Consumers compare everything ..... was I greeted at the front door, were the restaurant and bathrooms clean, did I have a friendly waiter, are the prices reasonable, did I get free bread or crackers on the table, was my water refilled in a timely manner, how was the noise level, did the food taste good, was the temperature okay, and on and on and on.

It's the same with triathlon.....we observe and judge everything; cost, location, transition security, course safety and markings, proper race distances, swim start waves, swag, t-shirts, aid stations, volunteers, spectator numbers, post race food, awards, and the list goes on. Competition among race organizers is heating up. 3D had an early start, but unless they stop cutting corners and start paying more attention to what's important to their customers, they'll continue to lose market share. Two years ago I did three 3D races. Last year I did 1. This year I'm not doing any.

Pizza as a post race food should be mandatory in ALL triathlons :-) ...... So should Ice Cream, but I've never seen it :-(

One more mandatory post race aid should be a hose. At the Grand Rapids Tri two weekends ago they had a guy with a hose at the finish line tent. After finishing, it was a 20 ft walk to a tent canopy with about eight chairs under it, and it felt absolutely amazing to sit down, tilt my head back, and run the hose over my head for about 60 seconds. It was totally rejuvinating! Well done Andy Vidro ;-)
That's just the thing, I did compare the only 3D race I've done to other races. I'm not getting slices of pizza anywhere anymore, so I can't really fault 3D for that when I haven't gotten any nearly anywhere. And as far as race shirts, there are few I like. I have liked 2 out of 3 of the GR Tri shirts. I hated the one their second year. I will applaud anyone who gives me a $10 option to order the tech shirt vs the cotton shirt.

I understand what you're saying as far as competing with other organizers, but as far as the one 3D event I have done multiple times, I put it right there at the top of my list for nearly everything. And I get more 3D fliers, brochures, emails, and such than I do for anything else.

And regarding the hose at Grand Rapids - I wish I could've experienced that. Despite the fact that I love that race, I was a little underwhelmed with their performance in regards to my injury (torn calf, which was the reason I never got to that finish line hose!)

Anyway, as another point, my participation in events tends to be more based around location/timing than anything else. I've participated mostly in events on the west side of Michigan (Grand Rapids, Grand Haven, Ludington, Tri Del Sol in Middleville, Greenville, etc). Finding something I can drive to relatively easily on race morning generally far outweighs a few other factors. If I'm going to travel for an event, I'm generally more likely to travel *far* away than to do in-state travel, except for that possibility of doing the 3D Michigan championships...but that is somewhat even based upon what is open that particular weekend.

Just my own prerogative!
2013-06-18 4:51 PM
in reply to: MSU_Brad

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Subject: RE: No more 3D events for me
Those fliers and brochures all cost money .... money collected by higher entry fees and pocketed by the elimination of such items as pizza. I'd happily pay $5 extra per race if it meant I had pizza at the end, but charge me $5 more and cut the pizza, and I'm grumpy :-)

The GR tri pizza was delicious. I took two big pieces, folded them together cheese side to the middle and ate them like a pizza sandwich. I assume it was Vitales pizza, the place where everyone parks. mmmmmmmmmmmmmm was it good!

The 3D HIM in Monroe last year had pizza.....and they were grilling burgers and hot dogs. It was the best post race food I've ever had. Why don't they do that everywhere?
2013-06-18 8:26 PM
in reply to: DV 1

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Subject: RE: No more 3D events for me
I should have cleared that up...most of the things I receive from 3D are email fliers. I do get the one or two newsletters from them.

I had no idea GR had pizza, I don't recall it the last two years. Another reason to be upset I had to pull out of the race at T1 with an injury.

Either way, honestly, if they take that pizza away and, instead, better train their volunteers to understand how to help an injured racer, I would appreciate it. It was disappointing that the first few volunteers were not even aware where the med tent was, especially as I was hopping along on one leg looking for answers. And if they would've responded to my email (sent over a week ago) yet, that would help more than pizza, too.

Also, I completed the swim. I made my way into T1. However, I am not listed in the results at all. Frustrating.

All in all I agree...I'd pay $5 more in every race to ensure I am going to have some delicious pizza after I finish!
2013-06-19 1:40 PM
in reply to: DV 1

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Subject: RE: No more 3D events for me
Originally posted by DV 1

Those little things add up. It's like in the restaurant industry. Lots of buzz and excitement at a restaurant open, but unless they consistently produce a quality product with services and amenities similar to their competitors, at a similar price, they won't last. Consumers compare everything ..... was I greeted at the front door, were the restaurant and bathrooms clean, did I have a friendly waiter, are the prices reasonable, did I get free bread or crackers on the table, was my water refilled in a timely manner, how was the noise level, did the food taste good, was the temperature okay, and on and on and on.

This is a really good analogy, and I totally agree with it. A lot of it also depends on your perspective as an athlete, some details are just more important to different people (competitive racers vs casual/social participants).

Pizza as a post race food should be mandatory in ALL triathlons :-) ...... So should Ice Cream, but I've never seen it :-(

YES! Ice cream and pizza should be mandatory, I don't care if it makes me sick.
2013-06-19 8:33 PM
in reply to: #4779260


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Subject: RE: No more 3D events for me
Yes, but the folks who put on Hawk Island make all of the waiting worth it. The course is clearly marked, super safe and the volunteers are extremely friendly and well informed. I always stay until the bitter end at Hawk Island (even though I am no where close to placing in my age group) just because it's such a fun race. And they have plenty of yummy recovery food to keep me busy while I wait to cheer in the final racer and applaud the winners.

Kath, i agree hawk is a fun race and its great to see new triathletes finish but I have to disagree on a few others. At hawk they always had the finishing runners crossing the runners going out. It was a simple change, just run on the left. They fixed this after 5 years so it is getting safer. There are still things at hawk that could be safer. If a swimmer really had respiratory distress those paddle boats would take a long time to get some to shore. I think all events have there strengths and weaknesses based on the venue and people running the event.
As for food at hawk island there were bean burritos and some fruit, at motor city they had Boston market with a plate full of choices plus other food and they had pop, water or head. I guess maybe it depends what you like.


2013-06-24 9:36 PM
in reply to: coreycs

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Subject: RE: No more 3D events for me
Interesting thread Corey!

I love racing Motor City. It is a flat fast venue and a social event for me. I see lots of folks I don't often get to see, and I love my tri peeps! That's why I'll probably do it every year!

3D has had lots and LOTS of issues with timing in many of their events, yet managed to do a fantastic job in at ITU Long Course World Championship in Vegas in 2011 when the swim was cancelled and timing went to a time trial start. It was done perfectly, on short notice and was no small feat! Why they can't seem to get Grosse Isle Du or Motor City spot on is beyond me!

And for the pizza lover, BLECH! I don't know how you can eat pizza after a race! Dont' get me wrong...I dig pizza. Just not after racing. :D

I will possibly do another 3D event this year, but again, it's because of the venue and my friends that will the there, not because of it being a 3D event.



2013-06-30 9:05 PM
in reply to: TrishM

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Subject: RE: No more 3D events for me
I'm sorry to hear about this discontent. I've always had positive experiences with 3D Races. Incidentally, I did the Big Fish Triathlon (same day as GR Tri)...pizza was offered, even though it's not my first choice of post event foods, it is what it is, but it was what it was...pizza.
2013-07-28 12:38 PM
in reply to: TrishM

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Subject: RE: No more 3D events for me
Originally posted by TrishM[/b
3D has had lots and LOTS of issues with timing in many of their events, yet managed to do a fantastic job in at ITU Long Course World Championship in Vegas in 2011 when the swim was cancelled and timing went to a time trial start. It was done perfectly, on short notice and was no small feat! Why they can't seem to get Grosse Isle Du or Motor City spot on is beyond me!


This is very interesting because I became extremely frustrated yesterday at Lumberman - I am convinced the timing/final results are messed up.
2013-07-29 1:37 PM
in reply to: WOT


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Subject: RE: No more 3D events for me
They messed up the results at Clarkston yesterday too. The online results look correct, but they used the wrong results for the awards. They had the correct overall results posted in one area then used something else for the awards. People were trying to tell them there was a problem, but they didn't agree until a bunch of people left with AG awards, leaving the real winners standing around complaining.
2013-07-29 2:47 PM
in reply to: coreycs


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Subject: 3D (3 Disappointments)
I have raced triathlon in Michigan for the last 10 years, each year competing in multiple events run by 3D. Up until 2010, they were THE main triathlon organizers in Michigan (with the exception of Elite Endeavors (out of the Sylvania, Ohio area). Having raced with them for many years, I feel my perspective is credible. Starting in sprints and Olympic distance events I was impressed with 3D's organization. Their courses were usually marked well (one exception: while driving the bike course a day early we had to correct the RD as he started marking the wrong road). My one complaint early on with 3D was the negative tone the RD had on race day while making general announcements (I realize RDs have to be blunt as many people don't listen to instructions, but his directions were condescending). I believe he has been receptive to feedback, as the last few years the RD has mellowed (yes I do know the RD's name but choose not to use it).

As my triathlon racing has grown, I have been able to compete beyond 3D's circuit. While participating in many more races, I have started to look at the value you get from a triathlon race entry fee, including the little things that bring me back to a race. Here is where 3D has fallen short in recent years.

1. Price Structure: The best discount 3D offers is to sign-up for events by new years eve prior to the racing year. Problem? They still haven't completed their race calendar. Most race companies have rolling deadlines (i.e. price increases 3 months, 2 months, 1 month from race day). 3D has 1-2 deadlines for all races combined. Yes, this means the same price increase date for a May race and October race. They attempt to rectify by offering a last minute $10 off when they realize very few have signed up. They have also attempted a few price-saving gimmicks but if you carefully look, actually don't save $$. Their explanation involves wanting to purchase all of their materials at one time (i.e. race t-shirts).

2. Course Officiating: Bike-drafting is essentially LEGAL in 3D events, as they will not pay for anything beyond one of their own trucks to drive the course (as they move volunteers and equipment). The RD didn't even bother mentioning it this weekend at Lumberman. I have had mini-peletons pass in all but one 3D event.

3. Volunteers: 3D offers school/community groups the chance to give time to help and in return donate $ back to your program. I found this is subject to their finances however. I brought in an identical student group to volunteer for an event in 2 separate years. The donation in year 2 was 50% of the year 1 donation. We decided to give our time and efforts to other causes afterwards. I have read earlier posts complaining about volunteers. Understand that 3D's race management is responsible for improperly training these volunteers.

4. Amenities: Three words: ON THE CHEAP. Finishers medals to all participants sounds good. However, the $1.50 Crown award medals are hardly rewarding, and exactly alike from race to race with the exception of the sticker showing the race name. 3D used to give a unique finishers race towel or 3D water bottle instead of the cheap medal. Why switch from a unique, free-advertising and promoting award...because it is cheaper. Most racers don't care about swim caps, and I rarely do. However, I was plain yellow swim cap when racing a 70.3 this past weekend at Lumberman. Why the switch...it is cheaper. 3D irresponsibly bought t-shirts without sampling them, resulting in a massive t-shirt SNAFU this year. They kindly offered to switch t-shirts as long as you came to another of their events and brought your original kid-sized shirt. Why settle for inferior product? C-H-E-A-P. How else can you organize a cheap race? I recently organized a 5K fun run for my church and was able to get Road ID race bibs for FREE. Guess what race bibs 3D uses for ALL tri's this year??? Yep...the exact same FREE bibs.

5. Post-Race Food/Drink: During the last 2-3 years, I have stuck with Olympic or Half-Iron distance events. This year as I have crossed the finish line, 3D has either run out of food or had slim-pickings. I am convinced 3D caters to newer triathletes who mainly race sprints. While on one hand this draws new sprint athletes that might return, it discourages others like myself who will not. Last month at the Big Fish Tri, I finished the Olympic tri to find a picked over food table with a few pieces of pizza left (no I was not the last finisher....rather just over 2:30 for an Olympic). Imagine you have just raced 5+ hours in a 70.3, have crossed the finish line dehydrated, and find only water and a kiddie-pool with a dozen warm colas. When asked where the electrolyte drinks were (HEED, Gatorade, etc), you are told "we ran out". With all due respect to beginning triathletes or those specializing in sprints...you cannot treat someone racing an Olympic or longer distance the same as a sprint athlete. Why didn't they hold back electrolyte drinks or cold drinks for longer distance athletes? ??

6. Transition Security: As mentioned earlier, there is a easily-bypassed security system with 3D to retrieve your bike afterwards. I am thankful that triathletes are honest individuals, otherwise many would have their $3K bikes missing. How difficult would it be to have bike # stickers to match race bib #s? Nope, this would cost $.

It is obvious that competition has started eroding into 3D's market share. Remember this each time you get a 3D e-mail saying "we have 200 more spots open" one week prior to racing (they used to sell out), or a $10 off deal opens (remember its still $20-30 more expensive than in March). 3D's decline is not a result of slower economics in Michigan. I once thought they were interested in promoting the sport of triathlon (an in fact they may have). I now believe they are all about the $$$. From talking to former 3D crew to other veteran triathletes, this belief has been strengthened. In planning my 2014 season, I only see one 3D event (and only taking place a few miles away). I will give them $40 next year, but no more.

Epic Events, Tri to Finish, Elite Endeavors, and Running Fit all offer superior experiences. What 3D offers is a lot of hype but nothing of substance to back it up with.


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