Rudy Project and USA Triathlon Celebrate IRONMAN World Championships with Exclusive Party in Kona
Kailua-Kona, HI – Rudy Project, Italian designers of technically advanced sunglasses and aero helmets, and USA Triathlon, the National Governing Body of Triathlon in the United States, welcomed more than 200 guests to a spectacular and exclusive party at the Hulihe’e Palace in Kailua-Kona just days before the 2014 IRONMAN World Championships. Media and key triathlon business figures were at the event to welcome some 30 of the top pros athletes in the field, including 2012 World Champion Pete Jacobs, Mary Beth Ellis, Tyler Butterfield and Kelly Williamson who all participated in a Q&A session with host Barry Siff.
After the Parade of Nations along Ali’i Drive, the sun set over the Pacific casting a brilliant orange glow on the Hulihe’e Palace; one of only two places in the United States designated as ‘Royal Ground’ by the Queen of England. This set the stage for USAT & Rudy Project, as they and host Barry Siff invited IRONMAN legends on stage for a Q&A session about their training, this week in Kona and their expectations for the 2014 IRONMAN® World Championships. Here are a few excerpts from their answers:
“An earlier interview today asked, ‘How do you come into this race seeming to have a bit of confidence after such a terrible year?’ and I said well, 4 or 5 times I’ve come here after starting training in August and just starting to have felt good then, and I ended up having pretty good years. So I’m feeling really good again and trying to go back to how I was really relaxed a few years ago. I’m making sure I’m fresh on race day. Anything can happen, but like I said, this is my course, I do well on it, and I’ve had a few top 10s here. I think I can do that again, just go out there and do what I do well.”
Mary Beth Ellis:
“I’m definitely under the radar. It’s been nice having no pressure coming in, and it’s kind of been one of those years where some things have gone really well and some things haven’t gone so well. At the end of the day I’ve learned a ton, and my coach is here and has done an amazing job getting me ready for the race day on Saturday. I think I’m going to hit it in the best shape of our team and I can’t say I’ve always done that. I’m excited.
I would say I’m very much under the radar still, with all of the great Rudy Project athletes that are here. I’m a little embarrassed to actually be up here, especially after people like MB and Pete who’s already go the crown on his head once. Everyone here has an affiliation with Rudy Project and I think we should be proud we have such a good helmet. Last year, my first race with that helmet was here and I surprised myself and I still surprise myself to this day.
[the women’s field] is ridiculous. I can look at that start list and pick 10 women who on paper could win it hands-down. It will be hard, and I’ve been here 3 times and never managed to get above a 13 [hour]. 13 to 15 is kind of where I’ve been stuck, it’s a hard race. I think before I came to Kona I always thought ‘oh it’s all just hearsay, it can’t be that bad, it’s just an IRONMAN’ but having done it 3 times, it definitely throws everything at you. For me, it’s much like Texas. I have to kind of focus on my strengths and my race. Be aware of what’s going on, but you can’t be in control of other people. The bike is not my strength, so that’s something where if people start to get up the road and if things start to get crazy up ahead of me I have to maintain my composure and focus on what I’m doing.
Watch the video recap of the whole evening including all the Pro Q&A’s here:
About USA Triathlon
USA Triathlon is proud to serve as the National Governing Body for triathlon, as well as duathlon, aquathlon, aquabike, winter triathlon, off-road triathlon and paratriathlon in the United States. Founded in 1982, USA Triathlon sanctions more than 4,300 races and connects with nearly 500,000 members each year, making it the largest multisport organization in the world. In addition to its work with athletes, coaches and race directors on the grassroots level, USA Triathlon provides leadership and support to elite athletes competing at international events, including International Triathlon Union (ITU) World Championships, Pan American Games and the Olympic and Paralympic Games. USA Triathlon is a proud member of the ITU and the United States Olympic Committee (USOC).
About Rudy Project
Rudy Project designs and manufactures performance-oriented helmets, sunglasses, goggles and Rx/prescription eyewear solutions by applying advanced science, cutting-edge technology and innovative aesthetics. Designed and crafted in Italy since 1985, Rudy Project has grown quickly as a premier brand throughout North America. Along with proprietary, award-winning lens technologies including ImpactX™, Polar3FX™ and RPOptics™, Rudy Project offers unparalleled customer service backed by a Lifetime Replacement Lens Guarantee and an industry-leading three-year frame warranty.
Learn more about Rudy Project at www.e-rudy.com