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nealo

Ten Questions with cjmacca

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We've had some great subjects for 10 questions and now we're about to have The Greatest Ever!

 

Welcome cjmacca and thanks for taking the time to answer some questions on trannies.

 

There's not much people don't know about you and there are some things I'm going to assume people know and if they don't they can google.

 

1. Your list, or the list Sean and yourself wrote is complete. Have you had it framed? With a your nice new place have you put it up in the pool room?

 

2. Most people have a bucket list, have you? Not like your list of one's to win but one that is maybe outside of triathlon.

 

3. Speaking of being done with triathlon, retirement. How long can pro's keep racing competitively for? I read something you wrote in 2007 about your last 4 years of Triathlon. From the rumours around at the moment with challenge Cairns, you've got a few more years coming.........

 

4. Challenge Cairns looks like a great event. Anything you want to add?

 

5. My kids go to the same school as Steve Waugh's kids. I often see him picking them up out the front and he's standing around by himself with people seemingly afraid to approach him. How are you treated at your daughters school? Do they know who you are?

 

6. Does your Wife get jealous of your playboy lifestyle? You know the training in the Mountains of Europe, the Fight Nights in Vegas etc. We all know "Happy Wife = Happy Life". How do you keep Emma-Jane happy?

 

7. With Kona being the FORD Ironman you'd think the least Ford could do is have a Prestige car available for the winner to use where ever they are in the world. Speaking of improving things, what about WTC? Where can they improve things?

 

8. Was there a turning point when you realised that you could still be a Pro and raise a family on winnings/sponsorship?

 

9. A tweet from Juan Pelota went like this - "a tri that's TdF "TT" style. The best of the best start a minute apart. truly an individual effort. Big $$. Best person wins." What do you think? What distance?

 

10. Forget having to race for sponsorship and/or prize money, do you have a favorite race that you wish you could enter more often?

 

Bonus question - I've got a signed Crowie poster, when can i come 'round and pick up a signed Macca poster?

 

Once again thanks for your time.

 

Nealo

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We've had some great subjects for 10 questions and now we're about to have The Greatest Ever!

 

Welcome cjmacca and thanks for taking the time to answer some questions on trannies.

 

There's not much people don't know about you and there are some things I'm going to assume people know and if they don't they can google.

 

 

Bonus question - I've got a signed Crowie poster, when can i come 'round and pick up a signed Macca poster?

 

Once again thanks for your time.

 

Nealo

 

A bit bored, so thought I'd answer the questions as well.

 

1. Your list, or the list Sean and yourself wrote is complete. Have you had it framed? With a your nice new place have you put it up in the pool room?

I have no list and I haven't had it framed.

 

2. Most people have a bucket list, have you? Not like your list of one's to win but one that is maybe outside of triathlon.

I would like a new bucket as my current one is a little wet. Serciously though I'm thinking of the recent post about Swedish chocolate delivered by a 20yr old Swedish girl...

 

3. Speaking of being done with triathlon, retirement. How long can pro's keep racing competitively for? I read something you wrote in 2007 about your last 4 years of Triathlon. From the rumours around at the moment with challenge Cairns, you've got a few more years coming.........

As a non-pro I feel that pros can keep racing as long as they want. Let's face it I'm never going to beat them and they're never going to loose to me.

 

4. Challenge Cairns looks like a great event. Anything you want to add?

I'm in. Looking forward to it but feel the point-to-point run is a bit of a strange choice, especially for spectators.

 

5. My kids go to the same school as Steve Waugh's kids. I often see him picking them up out the front and he's standing around by himself with people seemingly afraid to approach him. How are you treated at your daughters school? Do they know who you are?

I don't know who Steve Waugh is and I don't have kids. 'Er indoors is a teacher so she does go to school, don't think it's the same one as Steve Waugh's kids though.

 

6. Does your Wife get jealous of your playboy lifestyle? You know the training in the Mountains of Europe, the Fight Nights in Vegas etc. We all know "Happy Wife = Happy Life". How do you keep Emma-Jane happy?

She puts up with it, and her name is Clare by the way. I try to model myself on the Heff. 84 and got engaged to a 24yr old over Xmas. Actually my bucket list could include this...

 

7. With Kona being the FORD Ironman you'd think the least Ford could do is have a Prestige car available for the winner to use where ever they are in the world. Speaking of improving things, what about WTC? Where can they improve things?

Personally I drive a Toyota and I'm only going to make it to Kona via lottery. The WTC could increase the number of IMs in Australia and, although they obviously have to make money, put the focus less on making millions i.e.- generic IM branded rubbish at Busso. Is it realistic that they aim to only 'break-even' after all outgoings and that this is reflected in benefits to the racers?

 

8. Was there a turning point when you realised that you could still be a Pro and raise a family on winnings/sponsorship?

Good question.

 

9. A tweet from Juan Pelota went like this - "a tri that's TdF "TT" style. The best of the best start a minute apart. truly an individual effort. Big $$. Best person wins." What do you think? What distance?

I've heard of Juan Pelota but genuinely don't understand how twitter works.

 

10. Forget having to race for sponsorship and/or prize money, do you have a favorite race that you wish you could enter more often?

Norseman 2012 is in my sights.

 

Bonus question- send me an email and I'll send you a poster.

 

P.

Edited by Must tri harder

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Ka-nob....the cairns run course is not really point to point, it's actually a spectators dream ! the last 21k's is 3 x 7k laps thru the city streets of cairns !

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O.k going by Macca's Twitter he won't be by for a while and to stop the post's getting out of hand I'll post his reply................

 

We've had some great subjects for 10 questions and now we're about to have The Greatest Ever!

 

Welcome cjmacca and thanks for taking the time to answer some questions on trannies.

 

There's not much people don't know about you and there are some things I'm going to assume people know and if they don't they can google.

 

1. Your list, or the list Sean and yourself wrote is complete. Have you had it framed? With a your nice new place have you put it up in the pool room?

I have my list at my fathers house in a book of valuable things in my life. It is a photo album and it was filed in 2007 after I won in Kona. Emma and I have decided to have it framed when I retire from the sport with a collage of the events on the list and do exactly that, put it up in my pool room. I have an awesome photo of both Sean and myself from the Millennium New Years eve party I had at my apartment from Cronulla. We were both dressed up as Dumb and Dumber and had way too much to drink. This photo will also be framed with our list, as it says everything about our relationship and our enjoy life mentality that honestly has kept me in this sport for 20 years. We had great times together and I would never have imagined that the dream of two boys, who took the time to sit down and write out a list of all the races they were going to race together "when they grew up" would play such a significant role in my life. Sean and I lived and loved it, and this passion for our sport has never left me. I miss sharing this with a good mate. He would have loved what has transformed 20 years on. I wish he was here to celebrate it with me.

 

2. Most people have a bucket list, have you? Not like your list of one's to win but one that is maybe outside of triathlon.

I dont really have a bucket list but I have a few things I want to do before I die. I have agreed to climb Kilimanjaro with 5 friends in 2013. We trekked/Sailed through Patagonia in 2008 and was just awe struck. My wife and I spent a bit of time in Alaska this year, and we all decided that our next challenge would be Kilimanjaro. As for other things on my bucket list, I just want to do things with my girls. My eldest Tahlia is at an age where she loves to explore and see new things. I can see her being a real adventurer and this year we are doing some trips together to Europe between events, just herself and me. My youngest Sienna is a real girly girl and not much of an adventurer. I think my bucket list post career will be primarily to stay at home as much as possible and watch my girls grow up.

 

3. Speaking of being done with triathlon, retirement. How long can pro's keep racing competitively for? I read something you wrote in 2007 about your last 4 years of Triathlon. From the rumours around at the moment with challenge Cairns, you've got a few more years coming.........

Despite what some people think, I will know when to give it away. I have never had an injury in my entire sporting career which is testament to good planning and preparation and at 37 years of age I still feel as strong as ever. My sponsors are super supportive of what I do and are eager to keep me involved in the sport for as long as I am interested. I have always thought, it is better to be asked why you retired, than asked to be asked why you didn't. Athletically as you age if you plan your training right, make the adjustments to your workloads around recovery and not get caught up in replicating sessions or programs you did when you were younger, in Endurance racing, 37 is young. I spent a lot of time with Lance Armstrong this year in Austin Texas with my mate Mick, and we talked about this very topic. We did a few rides and runs together and spoke extensively on planning triathlon training around an aging body. Cycling/swimming is easy as it is non weight bearing, but what is difficult is building a running program around an aging body when you incorporate swimming/biking into the program. This is where issues will arise and adjustments need to be made. Even the great LA has had some knee issues making this adjustment. I think I have always understood this and this is why I have never been caught up in huge mileage or crazy "head sessions" that are done for no other reason than to build confidence. I don't see the need to retire from Triathlon anytime soon. Maybe adjust my travel and extensive international racing season and spend more time at home, but actual race retirement is not on the agenda for a few years. My sponsors have all committed to 5 years with me, and they did this pre Kona. I think the people who work with me and "REALLY" know me understand that I am REAL and not here to just race for the sake of it. I love and respect the sport too much to not be honest with myself. I know my sponsors are happy with that and their support will keep me in the sport. I have total freedom in what I want to do and they all support me in that. Will you see me in Kona again...... Never say never, but you will see me racing or involved in this sport for a few more years thats for sure.

 

4. Challenge Cairns looks like a great event. Anything you want to add?

Challenge do a great job. I raced Roth for 5 years and won the event 4 times. They were some of the best wins of my career. Until you see this event and the enormity of the entire race, you simply cant understand how massive this race is. Pete Jacobs has been doing wonderful things for the last 4 years in roth and I really believe it is this event that will ultimately take pete to an Ironman World title. To race well here you have to be prepared to go for it. It is just so bloody fast. European racing is just unbelievably fast. To go sub 8 hours really hurts but it is the pace early in the race that allows you to bring the times into this realm. It is simply an amazing event and they are trying to replicate this experience at other venues around the world. What they have in Roth is special in the sport, and one of the most amazing events you can ever do. I have a sound relationship with the people at Challenge and with USM. Both these organizations are working together to bring an event that is amazing to Cairns. I have known Felix from Challenge since he was 21 years old. I used to work with his father who ran the company before he died and handed the reins over to his son. Garth Prowd as far as I am concerned is the best in the business when it comes to putting events together in our sport. It is an amazing collaboration and working with them is definitely something we are looking at. I have a 3rd baby due this year and said to my wife that my racing schedule would be centered entirely around her this season. Being as close to home as possible this year will have huge benefits and an Ironman distance race in Cairns with the best in the business, well I think that says it all. I say "Why wouldn't you!

 

5. My kids go to the same school as Steve Waugh's kids. I often see him picking them up out the front and he's standing around by himself with people seemingly afraid to approach him. How are you treated at your daughters school? Do they know who you are?

My mother was a primary school teacher so many of the teachers at my daughters school worked with my mother. I love Burraneer Bay primary school. It is just a beautiful school. There are a small group of fathers who pick their kids up from school and most of them tend to be former sports people. I usually hang out with Brett Kimorly (Canterbury Bulldogs) and everyone knows him so he really takes the brunt of all the discussions when I am home. I think everyone knows me as the "Triathlon Guy" but it is not as if you feel awkward or anything. Its mostly all the mums and we have really become part of the "mothers club" when we are home. I grew up in this area and most of the mums I went to school with or remember from my days as a teenager partying at Northies and Carmens etc. They they say the shire is a very insular place and you really start to realize that when your kids go to school. We are all a little older now and I think many of the mums remember me as the ratbag who was partying with Sean, Clinton Barter, my Brother etc in my late teens and early 20's and thinking, how did this guy go on to be a triathlon (super fit) guy. We often talk about that. All s good at my girls school. It is a great school and really great group of people!

 

6. Does your Wife get jealous of your playboy lifestyle? You know the training in the Mountains of Europe, the Fight Nights in Vegas etc. We all know "Happy Wife = Happy Life". How do you keep Emma-Jane happy?

Emma Jane is most happy at home. She spent 9 years on the road with me living in Europe and the USA. She really didn't enjoy Europe which I know many people will find amazing, but loved the USA. We lived in the South of France for a few years and Emma struggled with the language and the longs days alone whilst I was out training with the Team. We moved to USA but have always spent about 3 months a year in Europe. She enjoyed the USA and felt much more at home in LA and San Diego. I will say she hated Boulder Colorado. I think like me growing up on the coast when you make a place your home for a long period of time, knowing there is a body of water (the Ocean) right there, even though you may not use it, is good for your head. When we had our eldest Tahlia and then Sienna, we talked in length about where to school our girls. We ere living in LA and Emma wanted to return home and school them in the shire. This was a decision we talked about and agreed to. We did that 2 years ago and with that came my increased travel schedule as we based out of Australia and I went away for camps. Emma is a very homely person. She is not into the glitz and glamour and really stays out of Triathlon altogether. She is the most non competitive person in the World, and couldn't give two hoots if I walked from the sport tomorrow. She has really grown up in the sport but grown up as a supporter of mine. Emma and the girls now travel up to the USA and Europe during school holidays and we spend time together as a family. Family keeps Emma happy and protecting our family and keeping us tight and together is all she is concerned about. Emma has some wonderful girl friends in Las Vegas and LA that she misses, but she has an incredible group of girlfriends here at home that are amazing. I just asked her this question as she walked in to ask me for a coffee. Instead of speculating here is her answer. "When I see a few of the things I am doing on facebook she wishes she was there, but she knows that they are just a fragment of the time in my life. Most of the time it is sweat and labour and outside of that it is smoozing with clients and sponsors and I can have that. life on the road is glamourous for those who have never lived it, but in reality it sucks. With every great person you meet, private jet you may fly or nice dinner or hotel you stay in, you have endless days of monotony, stress and living from a suitcase. When your 21 this is tolerable, but when you have a family, this is just horrific. Chris can have it and tell me all about it. I love where we are at and after 10 years on the road with Chris, being home is paradise!

 

7. With Kona being the FORD Ironman you'd think the least Ford could do is have a Prestige car available for the winner to use where ever they are in the world. Speaking of improving things, what about WTC? Where can they improve things?

I have answered this question a lot this year as I was racing in 1996 as a pro and more so in 1997, when the ITU did the same thing with Olympic Qualifying points. At this time in my career I was the World number 1 on the short course circuit and this really influenced how sponsorship, racing and qualification would work on the ITU circuit. Well the same has happened again and I am in exactly the same spot but this time in Ironman. The only difference is I am at a different stage in my life and my career than I was in 1997. The Ironman in my opinion is really starting to lose their way. They are becoming so corporate they are losing touch with what is important, INSPIRING people. I understand they are trying to find a way to meet the demands of this growing sport, but being an economics major, I know supply and demand are very closely related and by simply increasing the supply you can ultimately hurt the demand past the point of equilibrium. The demand is so high because people want to be inspired and achieve. They should keep the scarcity in the model and increase the sizes of the fields as opposed to adding more and more events. The biggest events in our sport are big because they have history. They need to embrace this, but I don't think they have truly understood this as they are so far removed from the cold face of the sport now. Look I could go on for hours about what I think about this and it is just too difficult to do so here. I know what brought me to triathlon. Inspiring the youth is key but inspiring people by being real is what is the key. It was embarrassing this years NBC coverage when all the stories they covered in the event had people driving Ford cars and putting on KSwiss shoes. I was like, are you kidding me!!!! Come on. anyway I will leave it there. All I say is this. When the sport is run by people who have no passion for it, whether it be at a national level or a global level, they lose sight of what is important and when they are presented with obstacles they dont have the drive or passion to meet them or move past them. WTC is run by corporates who are about making a dollar. Simple where their passion lies and here lies the problem. Its no longer about inspiring or the sport. It is about something else!

 

 

8. Was there a turning point when you realised that you could still be a Pro and raise a family on winnings/sponsorship?

Missing the Sydney Olympic Team. I guess when I won the ITU World Title in november 1997 I arrived and signed my first solid sponsorship portfolio. It was here I realized that you could make a real living from the sport, but I guess I was too young to realize that my dreams and future lay in the hands of others and even though I was making a living and traveling the world, I was living the dream and never took time to reflect on where my career was heading or what I wanted from it. I was in a system and thought it was leading me to the Olympics. In a system you are sheltered and protected and even though you think you control your destiny or are a REAL professional athlete, you are not! I was left off the team (I was an alternate and invited to the games as part of the Team but refused to be an Olympic Tourist) and I was pissed. It suddenly became all clear to me. I had greta people around me in Sean Maroney, my father and my wife, and we discussed this at length. I had considered retirement after this announcement and after many nights on the drink and talking we all came up with the reasons to push on. I was a pawn in the game and I was never going to be in this position again. I was going to do the races I wanted to do as a kid (the list). When I started Triathlon it was not even an Olympic sport yet my last 3 years had been all about this moment. I wanted the Olympics, I will not lie, but I also wanted lots of other things from the sport and I had put them on hold or more so forgotten about them as I had been so caught up in the Australian Olympic System. I moved to the USA and trained with Michellie Jones and found the sport again. I was my own man, raced where I wanted to race, and saw the potential that presented itself in the states. I was the next aussie after Greg Welch and Michellie to hit the USA. Most of the guys my age had been going to europe. The USA was just a different world and presented enormous opportunities. I learned quickly that you needed to make yourself known and went on a rampage of winning races and then attacking my federation for robbing me of my destiny. It made me get noticed and my racing was devastating. I was pissed off, and it fed itself. I raced for 2/1/2 years without getting beaten and I was not afraid to speak my mind in front of a camera. This obviously gave me a profile within the sport and I was embraced by some and hated by others. Bob Babbitt and Mark Allen became two of my closest allies, and they immediately understood that I was passionate about the sports history, the sport and was not a dummy. I was not the run of the mill triathlete they had dealt with and unlike many others they got to know me and what made me tick. The USA is an amazing place for our sport and if you market yourself properly you can make a real income out of a niche sport. What many people don't understand, is that you need to jump up and down and make noise and then back that up with results. If you can get this mix right in the USA, you can write your own cheques. My biggest sponsor Under Armour is an American Football company and they liked who I was, in a growing sport, that is simply boring to view to the average punter on TV. The sport needed people to be outspoken, Real and passionate and the companies I got involved with very quickly understood this about myself. I have been labelled the outspoken guy, the loud obnoxious guy, the disrespectful guy, the overly competitive guy. The simple fact is, I understood very early in the game, that by speaking your mind, stating your intentions, standing for SOMETHING is better for you than the flat, politically correct answers that the sport was being marketed with. I dont just talk shit for the sake of it. Most of what I say is real and appropriate so this is why it is never attacked on its merits. The thing is I say it, and this is what has kept me in my income for all these years. I then back it up to the best of my ability, which people like. Being a professional sport person is more than just winning races!!!!!!!!!! People on this site (no names but you know who I am talking about) go on like they have some idea as to the complexities of the game, when they are simply ignorant, uninformed bystanders and have no understanding whatsoever. Just because you know a couple of champions does it mean you know how the game works. I have a few mates who are lawyers. I dont have a clue about the LAW nor do i pretend to. The same can be said about sport. Winning races is a small piece of the puzzle. I can give you many examples of great athletes who won many races and never did too well out of our sport. Sport is a game, and I learned to really play around the year 2000. I think I love this part of the sport more than anything else and try to help many others (Terenzo Bozzone, Ronnie Schindlek, Sebastian Kienle) maximise this part of the puzzle. Wow I spent some time on this question. I will end it here. Sorry!

 

9. A tweet from Juan Pelota went like this - "a tri that's TdF "TT" style. The best of the best start a minute apart. truly an individual effort. Big $$. Best person wins." What do you think? What distance?Olympic Distance. It is that simple. And I will go on record and say that Alastair Brownlee, Javier Gomez, and michael Realert would be almost impossible to beat. The longer the distances the more complexities you bring into the game and if it is to be a real TT tour De France style effort, then Olympic Distance is your race. We had a race many years ago in San Jose that was this exact format. It actually went 2 minutes apart on the bike in the morning. In the afternoon they started the swim and the run portions off your bike time differentials. Walto and myself loved this race and it was just epic racing. We had some amazing battles at this event and it had solid prize money and a big following. I think it is a great concept and I know it works. We have done it! Actually did it another time in the Toyota race in Alice Springs in 1997.

 

10. Forget having to race for sponsorship and/or prize money, do you have a favorite race that you wish you could eneter more often?

Without Question the three best races I have ever done are Pucon Chile, Wildflower and Escape from Alcatraz. They are just great races and thoroughly enjoyable for all the reasons you do this sport for. They are CHALLENGING and no BS style of events. I get concerned a little now that events are trying to make it as easy as possible. The CHALLENGE should never be forgotten when planning events, styles of races and venues. These three events have nailed this mix to perfection. There are bigger races in the world sure, but these are magic races.

 

Bonus question - I've got a signed Crowie poster, when can i come 'round and pick up a signed Macca poster?

I love Jonathan Crowe. One of my favorite Uncle Tobys competitors. I wish I had a signed poster from him. Just joking man! No worries. Happy to sign a poster for you. Most of my Triathlon stuff I keep in our Condo in the USA so I will have to bring it home next trip

 

Once again thanks for your time.

 

Nealo

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Ka-nob....the cairns run course is not really point to point, it's actually a spectators dream ! the last 21k's is 3 x 7k laps thru the city streets of cairns !

 

Ka-ching!

 

'er indoors will be very happy with that.

 

P.

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O.k going by Macca's Twitter he won't be by for a while and to stop the post's getting out of hand I'll post his reply................

 

Thanks Nealo.

 

Great read. Not meaning to take the pi55, just a bit bored and sick to death of the rain!

 

P.

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Guest Gimili

You know, I hope if he ever writes a book he does it himself rather than ghost writes it.

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Great read.

 

Thanks Nealo for initiating and thumbs up to The Greatest Ever for his responses.

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Thanks Nealo for putting some great questions together for Macca

 

Thanks Macca for taking the time to answer them.

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Great questions Nealo....quality answers goes without saying.

 

The forum, Transitions, gains so much credibility with this kind of post....scary though, we have maybe 100 or less regular posters, so our experts are fewer.

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Macca said - "I have never had an injury in my entire sporting career which is testament to good planning and preparation and at 37 years of age I still feel as strong as ever".

 

 

 

No Macca. It is first and foremost a testament to good genes and good biomechanics THEN good planning and prep.

 

I am so insanely jealous i want to scream. 37, more miles in his legs than anyone has a right to and never injured.

 

Bloody good interview.

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Thanks Nealo and Macca, easily the best read I've ever had on this site! Macca is obviously not only very passionate about the sport, but also shows great intelligence for all life's challenges.

Sounds like the best person to head the running of this sport in this country??? (after he retires from competing, of course!)

Love his comment about races being made too easy, bring back more challenging events/courses!!!

And he is spot on about the WTC/Ironman Brand losing it's way. If the big names such as Macca, Crowie, Pete Jacobs, etc. embrace the new Cairns Challenge Event, WTC will be in big strife in this country, with only the faint sniff of Kona keeping them viable!!!

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Thanks Macca and Nealo.

 

I'm so glad you didn't retire after missing the Syd 2000 Oly Team. You were still destined for GREAT things.

 

Congrats Macca on a fantastic career so far.

 

Jules

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You know, I hope if he ever writes a book he does it himself rather than ghost writes it.

 

Spot on Gim. He expresses himself very well.

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Bump because it's off the front page and also for TGE making me look good.

 

I couldn't believe he was so accommodating over Christmas.

 

A true legend of the sport.

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Bump because it's off the front page and also for TGE making me look good.

 

I couldn't believe he was so accommodating over Christmas.

 

A true legend of the sport.

 

Have you contacted TPC yet to see if he will do one now he is retiring? :lol:

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