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IronmanFoz

Ken Baggs has a book coming out.

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So Ken has finally finished his book on Ironman Australia.

I look forward to a good read.

It will no doubt be an education for many on the history of Ironman in Australia!

 

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I spoke with Shane who did some pre read. All he could say is..... LOTS !

FM

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1 hour ago, IronmanFoz said:

Mick, does that mean he went into heaps of detail or held back lots.

Lots of detail and memories. I did not see the final but hopefully the bit on the "early discussions" in Forster with the Team plus the Forster/Port move will be there.

Remember that old saying though, "never step on the toes that are connected to the arse you have to kiss later".

FM

Edited by Flanman
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2 hours ago, bert40 said:

I presume out in time to buy a copy this week at Port?

Yep, As you leave registration checkin Ken will be set up to assist you buy his book.

Having done 19 races and hopefully 20 come Sunday, and also having trained in the early days with guys who did the first and second and many other Forsters/Ports etc before it became Ironman etc, there are incredible stories and history. Many stories that I know, won’t be in the book for sure, but hearing how the sport has grown from someone who has been involved in nearly all races will be fantastic. 

I look forward to a good read.

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26 minutes ago, IronmanFoz said:

Yep, As you leave registration checkin Ken will be set up to assist you buy his book.

Having done 19 races and hopefully 20 come Sunday, and also having trained in the early days with guys who did the first and second and many other Forsters/Ports etc before it became Ironman etc, there are incredible stories and history. Many stories that I know, won’t be in the book for sure, but hearing how the sport has grown from someone who has been involved in nearly all races will be fantastic. 

I look forward to a good read.

I know I'll be grabbing a copy then and there as well.

Hopefully there won't be a 15% Active Fee added on to the RRP.

😜

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Ken has a mind like a steel trap and a memory to match. 

The biggest problem will be knowing what to leave out. 

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Here is the official promo from Ironman:

BAGGSY’S BOOK LAUNCHES US BACK TO THE FUTURE 

On February 18, 1978, 15 people set out to complete a race in Hawai`i thought to be impossible – swimming, biking, and running 140.6 miles in a single day. Four decades later, from that one race, there are now 154 IRONMAN and IRONMAN 70.3 races around the world.  

One of the longest running IRONMAN events is the iconic IRONMAN Australia (Sunday 6 May) and the man who was at the birth of IRONMAN in Australia is former IRONMAN Australia and IRONMAN Western Australia Race Director Ken Baggs, who with the help of wife Glenda and thousands of volunteers including several volunteer Boards of Directors put Forster-Tuncurry and later Port Macquarie and Busselton WA on the IRONMAN map.

“The original local committee was created when the Mayor of the Great Lakes Council was approached to put on a triathlon that he thought would be good for tourism. I had a business in Tuncurry and that committee was formed in 1984 for a 1985 race to be called the Great Lakes International Triathlon and run by that committee under the “umbrella” of Council. I played golf, did a bit of cycling and played soccer in my youth but had never competed in a triathlon, really didn’t know what it was back then and still have never done a triathlon. My job on the original committee was to manage competitor registrations and that is where it all started for me.”

The inaugural Great Lakes International Triathlon was cutting edge for 1985 but it had no real precedent in Australia so everyone was inexperienced and literally flying by the seat of the their pants as “Baggsy” explained.

“Toohey’s sponsored it with $50,000 in prizemoney and $25,000 operational costs which blew out to who knows what with Council having to pick up the very large shortfall I believe. Scott Tinley and Mark Allen came out, Channel Ten covered it and John Laws did the voice over. Although I was in charge of registration I ended up being at the swim/bike transition with a team and at the bike/run transition with a team and at the finish line with my dear old dad and my family handing out finisher shirts in the dark as they crossed the finish line. We thought it was like Ben Hur, this huge event.”

The first race was infamous, with 30 people pulled out of the 11 degree water suffering from hypothermia. Miraculously everyone survived and the seeds, for what was to become IRONMAN Australia, had been sown.

“After that 1985 race some local businessmen established the Great Lakes International Triathlon Association (GLITA) in mid 1986 to resurrect the event for 1987.  I was approached to be a member of GLITA and I initially refused but offered to do registrations again. Then the 1985 “Race Director” suddenly ‘resigned’ and because no-one on the new committee was involved in the 1985 race, someone said they knew a bloke who might do it. Which turned out to be me.”

“They came into my shoe shop and said will you be the Race Director. Glenda said I wasn’t to do it, but I said I was going to do it anyway. It was more voluntary at that stage and I said ‘All you have to do is cover my expenses if I have to leave the shop and employ someone and you will have to cover my phone bill and that would be it’. And that was exactly what happened. So we set up the office at the back of our shoe shop and away we went. That decision to accept set me on a path for the next thirty years,” he said.

The race was an organisational nightmare in 1985 but every year under ‘Baggsy’s rule’ became more and more slick and professional.

“We followed the race committee structure like Hawaii, with a swim, ride and run director amongst others and each of the GLITA Board was assigned a Director role. Having a Board was a very disciplined process as to how we would run the event. I was a fairly hard nut on rules and regulations and came from a public service background so I was used to routine and structure and I guess that is what I brought to the event. The double dotting of the ‘i’s and double crossing of the ‘t’s.”

“The GLITA Board’s charter was to promote tourism in the Great Lakes area through the IRONMAN triathlon and it did that very well running the race as the Great Lakes International Triathlon until 1989 when it officially became IRONMAN Australia.”

An integral part of the race in Forster-Tuncurry for 20 years, Ken was intimately aware of all the conversations and negotiations that ultimately led to the move of the race to Port Macquarie in 2006, which is central to his new book “My Story”, being released in the week prior to this year’s event.

“There was so much hype about the move after 20 years. It was very, very sensitive and there are people in the town who still won’t talk to us. There were so many misconstrued stories and it was very sad when it went. I had all this correct information, so I had to write the book to clarify the real story behind the move. The book is called ‘My Story’ and I have approval to use the M Dot on the word My.”

“There was never really any intent to move the race but the Great Lakes Council in Forster-Tuncurry at the time just didn’t seem to me to be really into the tourism benefits from the event. I clearly remember getting the phone call from Dallas O’Brien of IMG telling me that the Council had withdrawn their “package” offer to retain the race which had been on the negotiation table for weeks. Dallas said, ‘Baggsy, they have pulled the pin. They are out’. He knew that I had been working with a team in Port Macquarie on another event and said ‘Get your butt up to Port Macquarie’. It was as simple as that.”

Ken said there has been great community support for the event in both locations and he has dedicated the book to wife Glenda and the thousands of volunteers, because without them it wouldn’t have happened. 

“I didn’t set out to write the book as a money making exercise, because you don’t make money out of writing a one off book and I am not an author. It was more an exercise in documenting my personal history of IRONMAN in Australia, which ties in with the 40th Anniversary of IRONMAN.”

‘My Story’ will be officially launched at the IRONMAN Australia on Wednesday 2 May. If you want to learn about the man they call Baggsy, the devotion of his wife Glenda and the history of IRONMAN in Australia, rush down to the IRONMAN Australia Expo to pre order your copy.

 

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Warning.  The music is horrible 

 

 

Edited by Peter

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26:28 mins into 1985 video..... is this Ken Baggs on left  ?   -  as Puntos twins come in off their  bikes  in transistion -  

KB1.png

 

 

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My copy arrived today. 

Personally signed by Ken.,

had a quick squizz and noticed transitions got special mention near the back.

😃

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Just finished reading as well. I was not expecting the revelations about his affair with Karen Pini and all the explicit details, truly shocking 😉(joking)

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15 hours ago, Waza said:

Just finished reading as well. I was not expecting the revelations about his affair with Karen Pini and all the explicit details, truly shocking 😉(joking)

sounds like you're a bit jealous! 

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3 minutes ago, willie said:

sounds like you're a bit jealous! 

He's probably long had a thing for Baggsy.

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2 hours ago, Paul Every said:

He's probably long had a thing for Baggsy.

Do you mean a long thing for Baggsy? If so, yes I do

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Yes, you sickos. Shame on you! Ok let's get back to Baggsy Book Club. What was everyone's favourite chapter? I think the ending was a little bit predictable

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17 minutes ago, Waza said:

Yes, you sickos. Shame on you! Ok let's get back to Baggsy Book Club. What was everyone's favourite chapter? I think the ending was a little bit predictable

I like the chapter about AP

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3 hours ago, Bored@work said:

I like the chapter about AP

Don’t you mean Kona?

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