Countdown to Kona 2017: Part 4

Welcome to Part 4 of our 3rd annual Babbittville Countdown to Kona! 


This year we are featuring 50 of our favorite Ironman sound bites from our Babbittville interviews. 


Follow along on our countdown each day on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter! 



Part 4 of the Kona Countdown: 



#KonaCountdown 20 days
Today's Kona Countdown features Ben Hoffman. Ben had a breakthrough race in 2014 at the Ironman World Championship, finishing second to Sebastian Kienle. We chatted with Ben on Breakfast with Bob before the 2015 race, and Ben talked about his approach for tackling the hardest day in our sport.


#KonaCountdown 19 days
A little #MondayMotivation from today's Kona Countdown featuring the three-time Ironman World Champion Mirinda “Rinny” Carfrae. In 2014, Mirinda was 14:32 back off the bike and in eighth place when she uncorked a course record time of 2:50:26 to catch the long-time leader, Daniela Ryf. The gap between the two at the end? A mere 2:02. Listen as she talks about facing some mental struggles on the way to pulling off that performance.


#KonaCountdown 18 days
Today's Kona Countdown comes from one of my all time favorite people to interview: the late, great Steve Larsen, who is so missed. Steve was like a meteor in our sport: such a bright star, who made such an impact, and was gone way too soon. Today's sound bite comes from an interview Paul Huddle and I had with Steve back in the summer of 2008. Steve came over to the world of triathlon from cycling and shook things up in Kona in 2001, when he finished 9th. We chatted with Steve after he decied to give Kona another try in 2008. In typical Steve fashion, he gave us a great line about ignoring his less-than-stellar swimming abilities and focusing on his strength on the bike. Listen to the full interview with Steve here.


#KonaCountdown 17 days
Today's Kona Countdown features one of The Challenged Athletes Foundation trailblazers and super stars: The invincible Sarah Reinertsen.
When Sarah first came to the Ironman in 2004, the goal was to become the first above-knee amputee to finish the event. Sarah missed the cutoff time on the bike that day by 15 minutes. But for someone who had been told by her soccer coach that while the other girls played the games, he wanted her to go off by herself and kick the ball against a wall, proving people wrong and overcoming the odds was something she took in stride.
The following year the theme became ‘Unfinished Business’ and, ironically, on 10/15/05, her time was 15:05 and Sarah became the first single above-knee amputee woman to finish the toughest day in sport. More importantly, thousands of other people who watched her story play out on NBC in both 2004 and 2005 were moved by Sarah to overcome their own personal challenges in the years to come.
Today's sound bite features Sarah describing how she dealt with the setbacks from 2004 and overcame them in 2005 to show that race who was boss!


#KonaCountdown 16 days
Few have ever made more statements at the Ironman World Championship than The Man, Dave Scott. In his first win back in 1980 he took nearly two hours off of the existing course record. He was the first person to go under 10 hours, under 9:30, under 9:00, and under 8:30. He was also the first to run the marathon in Kona under 3:00 hours, under 2:55, and under 2:50. During his eight starts during the 1980’s, he won six times and finished second twice.
When he took second to Mark Allen in the 1989 Ironwar, Dave went an astounding 8:10, took 18 minutes off of his existing course record, and ran 2:41 for the marathon.
Unfortunately injuries kept him off the starting line for five years, until 1994. At that point in time, Dave Scott was a 40-year-old dad. In the past he was racing Mark Allen and Scott Tinley. This time he was going head-to-head with someone who never loses, some guy named Father Time.
Early in the bike ride Dave Scott surprised everyone but himself by storming into the lead. Off the bike he kept Australia’s Greg Welch in sight and, heading into the Natural Energy Lab, he was only 11 seconds back. Welch was tougher that day and Dave Scott settled for his third second place finish, this time at the age of 40.
If you ask Dave Scott today to name his favorite Ironman race, there is a good chance that 1994, even though he didn’t win that day, just might be at the top of the charts.
Because his boys, Ryan and Drew, were there to watch daddy race the toughest day in sport, and because he proved to himself and everyone else that in Kona, at the Ironman, even if he’s 40 years old it’s a mistake to ever count Dave Scott out.
Listen to today's sound bite as Dave talks about making another statement that day.

Read more about Dave Scott in this editorial I wrote about him from a pre-race moment in 1994 here.


#KonaCountdown 15 days
Today's Kona Countdown features the 6-time Ironman World Champion Mark Allen. For the question of what was Mark's best race in Kona, many might say winning IronWar in 1989. Mark thinks his 6th, and final, win in 1995 was his best. Listen as he explains why it meant so much.


#KonaCountdown 14 days
Two weeks from today, the 2017 Ironman World Champions will be crowned. To be the first person to run down Ali'i Drive is a magical moment that few have felt: only 18 women and 20 men have experienced it. Peter Reid, from Canada, did so three times. As he looked back at his career, his first Ironman World Championship remained his most treasured moment. Listen as he explains why.

Listen to the full interview with Peter here.


#KonaCountdown 13 days
How do you go from cancer death sentence to the Ironman World Championship? With inspiration from the 1982 champion Kathleen McCartney and the power of sport. Listen to Mike Levine's story of finding the spark to survive and fight when all odds were against him. Listen to the full interview with Kathleen and Mike here.
Read more about the reverberations of the historic February 1982 Ironman here.


#KonaCountdown 12 days
Today we're featuring another memorable story from the February 1982 Ironman World Championship: the finish that put the race on the map…In February of 1982, college student Julie Moss led the Ironman until her dramatic finish. A finish that riveted the nation and showed us the incredible drive to get to that finish line, no – matter – what.


#KonaCountdown: 11 days
We're celebrating #TransformationTuesday on our countdown today with the incredible Liz McTernan. Liz is on her way to the Ironman World Championships, and she reminds us that sometimes when we are forced to reinvent ourselves we surprise ourselves with who we become. Listen to the full interview with Liz here.

View Part 1 of the Kona Countdown here. 
 View Part 2 of the Kona Countdown here. 
View Part 3 of the Kona Countdown here.

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