I just got a letter of apology from the race director (Debbie Dusesnbery) for the Grady Williams "Try-to-kill-the-back-of-packers" race in Farmington on July 1, which is the only race I've ever written a letter of complaint regarding. Quite frankly, the "apology" has me puzzled.
On the one hand, Debbie "sincerely apologized" for my unpleasant experience, and said that next year, they're going to put orange cones at critical turn areas. She also mentioned that next year they'll make sure the EMT tent is marked, and she refunded my entry fee.
One the other hand, her letter appears to be part of a "cover my ass" affair, copying several other people, as I had in my original letter of complaint. Her letter includes such phrases as, "two telephone calls I received were from athletes that saw your interaction and were apologizing for you by name" and reminding me that "USAT Rules state that the responsibility of knowing and following the prescribed course rests with each participant." She also mentioned that "only a very small number of triathletes were lost" and that Keith Peterson has been marking these courses for 13 years. She also claimed in another communication that she was unable to find me to talk to me at the transition area, and that they had LOTS of fruit and water, why, they had thrown some out after everyone left!
I've debated whether or not to turn this into a pissing contest by responding to her, and have decided that I won't. I'll just vent. Here. Lucky you.
First of all, Debbie, how many triathletes have to be lost before it becomes a problem? 5? 10? Give me a number so that we won't bore you with any complaints until that number has been reached.
Second, Clay, another triathlete, read my race report and told me that the race has gotten worse over the years. He's done it twice before. he was one of the ones that was lost.
Third, Debbie, I'm going to call you a liar, 100%. Nobody would call to apologize for me "by name" because few people know me outside the Outlaws triathlon team and second, there was nothing to apologize for. Keith Peterson berated me and another triathlete for being lost, and we defended ourselves, and beyond that, I was too tired to talk much to anyone.
Fourth, there was no food, I repeat, no food and only warm water when I was in the transition area, except for the single power bar floating in a box of ice. It had all been eaten. If there was fruit, I'd have been all over it like white on rice, because I always eat fruit after I run.
Lastly, I was available to talk to, and easy to find, because MY HUSBAND, WHO HAS THE SAME LAST NAME, WAS ANNOUNCED, STEPPED UP, AND CLAIMED HIS AWARD, and I was standing right next to him.
I stand by my original report. I can bring my own water and food, but I would not recommend this race to anyone I cared about, and maybe not any of my enemies, unless they correct serious and dangerous problems with marking the course.
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