"I can't wait until tomorrow... 'cause I get better looking every day." -J. Namath
You read that right. That was the title of Super Bowl winning quarterback Joe Namath's book written by Dick Schapp. What was even better was the front cover of the book was a close up of his face, the actual title was on the back.
This has nothing to do with DelMoSports. BUT, I finally understand what he meant, finally.
Our crew just completed its most difficult season ever. After a cancelled 2020, and our world only opening up this past May, we were in a scramble to permit, market, execute, and service our events. Some events had to move dates, some had to be modified in format. All of them had less athletes than in prior years, yet each event was coupled with more challenges. And speaking of challenges, and in honor of the MLB postseason, here are the Top 5 Curveballs thrown at us in 2021 (in no apparent order):
1. Not getting the official go ahead to produce the Hand & Stone Massage and Facial Spa Women's Philadelphia Triathlon until early June, and not knowing if the pool would be open until the week of the race. Producing a race is hard enough, however, producing a race for women, that's supposed to be a triathlon, but has to be switched to a duathlon, then find out you could have done a triathlon... is very frustrating. Yet, we felt the 300 women that did compete in the event were given a first-class experience and our crew could not have been better.
2. Taking a full 2 days to produce the MudHen Brewing Co. 10 Miler due to COVID restrictions. In April, guidelines did not allow for us to get together in groups of more than 50 so in order to have an event we had to come up with a solution... and we did. Creating corrals of no more than 25 runners spread out in 20-minute increments allowed us to service over 500 runners safely and within the guidelines set forth by the State of New Jersey. It took a lot of planning, and the team/athletes/volunteers were fantastic.
3. Finding out the night before IM70.3AC, we were 12 officers short on our bike course and we had to find a solution. Yes, at 7:02pm the night before the race I received a phone call we didn't have enough coverage. KT and I went from congratulating ourselves for being dialed in and having everything ready to go to making dozens of calls and ultimately finding what we needed to safely execute the bike course.
4. Having a bomb sniffing dog 'sit' by the food truck at DeSatnick Real Estate Escape the Cape which triggered a potential evacuation of the ferry property. Let me begin with it was a false hit and everything was clear, but I spent 15 minutes of race morning with police creating a plan to safely evacuate 1,000 athletes from transition without mass hysteria. The plan was actually very good and the DRBA has since requested that it be documented and put into our operations guide permanently. Haha, bet you didn't know that one!!!!
5. Being informed Boardwalk Hall facade construction would not be complete and having to move the finish of the CRDA TRI AC and IM70.3AC. Yup, like everything else during these 'strange times' having to devise a plan to alter our finish with short notice was a challenge, but I think our beach finish is here to stay. It's one of those moments that you blessed to have experienced because you are better off in the long (soft sand) run.
The focus in 2021 was to have safe, live events... period. I'm sure all of you noticed we did ZERO marketing to register for DelMo events during the pandemic. We simply did not feel comfortable asking people to sign up for a mass participation event when we're not supposed to be in large groups. Truth be told, this hurt us in terms of numbers, but we ALWAYS PLAY THE LONG GAME here in DelMoLand. Your safety is our #1 priority and for that we know you'll come back again and again. We have much to be thankful for in 2021 and 2022 is looking to be our most exciting season yet.
So, let me finish this by saying, "I can't wait until the 2022 race season... 'cause we get better and better every year." I hereby proclaim the team at DelMoSports/DelMoPRO both full-timers, and weekend contractors to be the BEST IN THE BIZ. There is nothing they cannot handle, they never complain, and when a situation arises, they never blink and their hands never shake.
Thank you to all who stuck with us.