The Logistics of Professional Racing

image It’s that time of year again. The season has ended, training is unplanned and often completely absent from my schedule. And Quicken has become my most frequently opened application. During the season I often neglect to balance my expense book and I tend to focus only on the balance in my checking account. Now that the season’s over, however, I get to look through those piles of receipts from my travels, and figure out where I was appropriately frugal, where I spent too much money and where I should have just stayed home. There’s also some things I would have like to spend more money if given the opportunity. Aside from moving out of my parents house, I think the most bang for my buck would be spent at the Institute of New Medicine, and hopefully next year I can afford to bring them even further into my recovery, training and racing regimen.

2008-4-13_South Beach_Tri 025So once I figure out where my money went last year, I will make a plan for the 2009 season. This brings me to the point where I figure out where I’m getting the money for racing. Luckily, I have a base of sponsors who I am really excited to work with again. This is thanks to some advice I received from Chris Lieto about a year ago. He told me to make a list of companies who I could see myself working with for my entire triathlon career. He then told me to contact those companies, and let them know how much I like their product, and why I can see myself representing them for years to come.

At first it seemed wrong of me to turn down companies that may be offering better sponsorship packages, but a year later I see the benefit. For one thing, I’m not racing on equipment that I dislike. The list 2008_11_03_Taper_Week 013that Chris convinced me to make is now displayed as a banner on the left side of your screen, so whenever I am asked about my sponsors I can respond with excitement and honesty: “I love my Beyond Fabrications road bike, it’s the best bike I’ve ridden. And if you’d like to see where I’ve been riding it you can check out my Garmin Connect account.” or “Have you seen my new K-Swiss Kona Racing Flats? They’re totally sweet!” or “I eat about four Clif Bars a day because they’re perfect for an athlete on the go, and they have enough flavors that  I never get sick of them.” You get the idea. Plus, for 2009 I have the added benefit of knowing exactly who I want to work with. I may add a sponsor or two for next year, but for the most part I have my bases covered.

What does all this mean? Well, by the end of the month I’ll know if I should sign up for classes next quarter or start sending out resumes for part time work. (As much as I’m enjoying biochemistry, I may actually prefer a job).

Published by Ben

Ben Collins Professional Triathlete

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