Welcome to the 10th Edition of Ford Ironman Wisconsin!
With the race occurring on the 10th anniversary of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, it will be a day filled with emotion and remembrance.
The Expo Area outside of the Monona Terrace.
Entering messages for partcipants at The Ford Motivation Station.
The Athlete Check-in.
Checking out the Official Ironman Merch. The most popular area on site.
Tom Ziebart hosts the Friday Press Conference.
The full panel at the Press Conference.
Steve Gatto was on the 61st floor of the South Tower of the World Trade Center when the first airplane struck the North Tower. He made his way down to the 44th floor of the South Tower when the second airplane crashed into that building.
Inspired by the firemen he saw heading past him and into the Tower to help others that day, he will pay tribute to them by racing on Sunday. He is raising funds for the Wounded Warriors Project and so far has raised $6000.
Captain Carl Gloede of the Madison Police Department.
He came up with the idea of Team 9-11. A team of 150 service Police, Fire, Military and First responders from across the country who will race in memory of those that lost their lives during the 9/11. To date the group has raised over $20,000 for their designated charities.
Captain Gloede stated that many of Team 9-11’s athletes would not have participated if it were not for the race falling on the 10th anniversary of 9/11.
They will have strong crowd support on Sunday and they will be easy to spot, as their bib numbers will have a red backing. We look forward to seeing them live up to Mike Reilly’s dream of a 98% completion rate.
Guillaume was second last year after setting a new bike course record of 4:42:29. He told us that he is looking to do the same on Sunday and is hoping to start the marathon with a healthy lead.
He has improved his run, he ran 2:54 at Ironman UK six weeks ago, so he will be tough to beat.
This will be his tenth Ford Ironman Wisconsin (5 as an age grouper and 5 as a pro). From nearby Fitchburg, Wisconsin, he finished fifth last year and he loves this run course.
“It feels like running on a treadmill in your basement with thousands of your best friends cheering you on,” said Becker at the press conference.
The top three women's contenders.
She has returned to Madison after winning the first two races here in 2002 and 2003.
The mother of three (two 14 year olds and one 11 year old) is excited to see how she stacks up to her winning performances from 8 years ago, and hopefully add a third Ford Ironman Wisconsin win to her career.
Third at Subaru Ironman Canada two weeks ago, she is also the 2010 Ironman Canada Champion along with Ironman Couer d'Alene in 2009.
She has never put together back-to-back Ironman races this far apart (2 weeks).
“I’ve been doing more intensity than volume during the last two weeks. Lots of little things to keep the body tuned,” said Kessler.
Jessica Jacobs. She is the 2010 Ford Ironman Florida champion, and won the 25-29 age group here as an amateur in 2004. She was in the US Army and was stationed in South Korea during the 9/11 attacks.
"The base was in lockdown and in high alert. I felt so helpless. I wanted to be back in New York to help," recalled Jacobs, whose husband deployed to Iraq at the beginning of August.
She moved to Green Bay during the July 4th weekend, so she will have some strong local support along with a lot of family and friends cheering her on.
Mike Reilly hosts the Welcome Dinner at Monona Terrace.
Paul Soglin, The Mayor of Madison, welcoming athletes to the City of Madison.
Deb Archer - The President/CEO of the Greater Madison Convention and Visitors Bureau.
Tom Ziebart sings the National Anthem.
Some members of Team 9-11.
Robert Verhelst of the Madison Fire Department.
He worked on the Search, Rescue and Recovery team at the World Trade Center for eight days after 9/11.
He will wear the full firefighter bunker gear, helmet and CBA gear for the marathon when he races on Sunday.
Cheque presentation to the Madison Area Sports Commission. One many organizations in the area to receive funding from the Ironman Foundation.
One of the many married "Iron Couples" racing on Sunday.
Winner of the signed poster auction. A $4000 contribution to the local police and firefighers.
Saturday Morning Swim at Lake Monona.
Saturday Bike and Gear Check In.
One final goodbye to the bike before seeing it again tomorrow morning.
Brigadier General Duane Lodrige will be racing with number 2719 tomorrow.
Retired from the military in 2007, tomorrow will hold special significance for him because he was the Commander of the 113th Wing of F16 Viper pilots that were suddenly put into action to protect the airspace around Washington, DC, after the 9/11 attacks.
He recalls that unprecedented time in American history where they were flying “weapons free.” Meaning that they were free to shoot down anything approaching downtown DC.