Saturday, February 11, 2012

Want to Race in 2012?

Entries are Available!

Still trying to get into a race in 2012? Endurance Sports Travel has race entry slots still available to many sold out races. Our featured races include Ironman U.S. Championship – New York, Frankfurter Sparkasse Ironman European Championship, and Ironman Austria. Don’t miss this great opportunity to do the race of your dreams in 2012!

Ironman U.S. Championship - New York

Endurance Sports Travel will certainly be in the Big Apple for the inaugural Ironman U.S. Championship, will you? The inaugural Ironman U.S. Championship begins with a 2.4-mile swim with time-trial start in the Hudson River. The 112-mile bike course spans the cliffs of Palisades Parkway followed by a 26.2-mile run course over the George Washington Bridge. Racers finish on 81st Street in the heart of the city.

Ground Package to the Ironman U.S. Championship Includes:
  • Accommodations and all taxes at Host Hotel
  • EST Welcome Package
  • EST Welcome Dinner
  • Exclusive EST Professional Bike Mechanic
  • Guided Group Runs and Rides in Central Park
  • Question and Answer Session with Ken Glah
  • 2 CO2 Cartridges for Race Day
  • Discount for TriBike Transport
  • Hospitality Area for EST Spectators on Race Day
  • Daily Guided Tours of Central Park, Little Italy, China Town, Financial District, 9/11 Memorial, Empire State Building, etc. (entrance fees are not included)
  • ART Therapist (Active Release Technique)
  • Reserved Seating at the Carbo Dinner for all EST Athletes and Guests (tickets are not included)
  • Transition Bags and Bikes Collected from T1/T2 area and delivered to hotel for TriBike Transport by EST Staff
  • Organization of Bike Shipping for Foreign Athletes after the race
  • Daily Guided Trips for Dinner — Little Italy, China Town, Hoboken, etc (meal is not included)
  • Organization of Theater Tickets and Sunday Cruise
Frankfurter Sparkasse Ironman European Championship

Frankfurter Sparkasse Ironman European Championship takes place in and around the city of Frankfurt. An incredibly fast course with huge crowds will remind you of scenes from the Tour de France. There are just a couple of the reasons why Frankfurter Sparkasse Ironman European Championship is a race that many athletes want to add to their list of Ironman races. The run takes place within the city and has such high energy that you will feel the crowd carrying you home to the finish.

Let Endurance Sports Travel handle all of the reservations. Athletes can expect a first-class experience for themselves, their families and spectators alike!

Ground Package to Frankfurter Sparkasse Ironman European Championship includes:
  • Accommodations at the InterCity Frankfurt
  • Roundtrip Transfers From the Airport (Frankfurt) to the Hotel
  • Roundtrip Transfers From the Train Station (Frankfurt) to the Hotel
  • Daily Local Transportation (provided by EST)
  • Transportation to All Race Functions
  • Daily Buffet Breakfast
  • EST Welcome Packet
  • EST Hosts/Hostesses to Assist You
  • Professional Bike Mechanic at the Hotel (Exclusive to EST Clients)
  • CO2 Cartridges for Race Day
  • Distribution of Special Needs Bags on the Bike and Run
  • Hospitality Area for Spectators during the Bike and Run
  • Bike Case Storage in the Hotel (more space and less clutter in your room)
  • Guided Course Tours Daily (Sunday through Thursday pre-race)
  • Monday Night Celebration Dinner
  • Organization of optional day trips in and around Frankfurt the week before and the week after the race
Ironman Austria

One of the fastest Ironman's ever recorded took place at Ironman Austria, so get ready to PR. A limited number of race entry slots are available on a first come, first serve basis. Don’t miss your chance to register for Ironman Austria with Endurance Sports Travel. Contact us now to make your reservation!

Ground Package to Ironman Austria includes:
  • Accommodations (Gretl Hotel and Haus Gut Drasing)
  • Roundtrip Transfers From the Airport (Klagenfurt) to the Hotel
  • Roundtrip Transfer from the Train Station (Klagenfurt) to the Hotel
  • Daily Local Transportation (provided by EST)
  • Transportation to All Race Functions
  • Daily Buffet Breakfast
  • EST Hosts/Hostesses to Assist You
  • Professional Bike Mechanic at the Hotel (Exclusive to EST Clients)
  • Guided Course Tours Daily (Sunday through Thursday Pre-Race)
  • Optional Day Trips in and Around Klagenfurt The Week Before and After the Race
Besides our Featured Races above, we have quite a few other races for you to consider, both internationally and in the U.S. Endurance Sports Travel even has race entry slots to many of the sold out races! To reserve your entry, all you need to do is pay for your race entry and make a deposit for your ground package.

Endurance Sports Travel has secured your accommodations and will take care of all your transportation. Just purchase your airfare and enjoy your training.

2012 race entries are still available for the following races:

Ironman Texas
Ironman Austria
Frankfurter Sparkasse Ironman European Championship
Ironman US Championship - New York
Ironman Mont-Tremblant
Ironman Canada
Ironman Wisconsin
Ironman Florida


From Dede Griesbauer, Professional Triathlete:

"I have traveled a number of times with Ken Glah and his team at Endurance Sports Travel. The first trip I took with Ken, I was hooked. Simply can't understand why athletes would go it alone when you can go it with EST.

I am typically a "do it yourself-er" and that's all well and good when things go according to plan…..but how often does international travel with 100+ lbs of highly sensitive and technical sports equipment go smoothly? Ken's teams, no matter the race location, are exceptionally professional, exceptionally friendly, and if they can't solve your problem? The problem can't be solved! Need the best massage therapist in the area? Done. Want to find a pool to swim in and secure a car hire to get there? Done. Shifter break in foreign country? Replacement part located in a city 1474 miles away and shipped overnight to expert EST staffed mechanic for installation. Problem solved. Crash your bike and wind up in the ICU? Transition bags collected and hotel room packed.

All true stories of things that have happened to me in my travels with Ironman racing and examples of Ken and his staff go above and beyond to care for each of their athletes.

Think I'm "different" because I am a pro? Not hardly. I know another EST client who broke a tooth biting into a frozen Snicker bar she'd left in her gear bag. EST had a dentist at the EST house within an hour after the athlete finished the race. Problem...SOLVED!

You can easily plan your travel to your next Ironman or half-Ironman competition on your own, but why not book with Ken and Endurance Sports Travel and have a dedicated staff of experts at your disposal to help make your travel and race experience as easy and care free as it can be?"

From Luis Mendes:

"Disculpa lo tarde de mi respuesta pero es que estaba en argentina de vacaciones y gracias por tomarme en cuenta para tu revista y aqui te mando mi reportaje por si lo quieres agregar desde hace algun tiempo tuve un sueno y era realizar todos los diferentes ironman que existian en el mundo.

Sabia que la meta era algo larga y fuerte por lo que tenia que buscar ayuda para que el camino fuera lo menos desgastante y que me sintiera bien con lo que hacia ademas tenia temor saber a donde iba a llegar el idioma costumbres gastos y tantas cosas de un viaje mas el objetivo de realizar un ironman lo mejor concentrado para lograr terminarlo bien por lo que quiero compartir la suerte que tuve de conseguir un aliado y es la gente de endurance sports y de hecho ha sido mi hermano mayor que me ha ayudado a no tener que cometer errores ya que el me ha aconsejado lo que debo hacer para no equivocarme.

Hoy por hoy ya he hecho 10 ironman y todos los he terminado bien un poco mas o menos de los tiempos esperados pero feliz porque he viajado solo y con mi familia y ellos me ayudan en todo ya que tienen todo organizado saben como tratar un atleta y sus acompanantes ya que ellos tambien son atletas.

Quiero compartir las palabras de agradecimiento de mi familia y espero que sigan siendo mi hermano mayor en los ironman.

Saludos de luis mendes"

"For a long time I had wanted to have a 'dream come true' in regards to competing in some of the different Ironman races that exist around the world. I knew that this was a goal that was both big and difficult and that I would need the help of someone to make the path to my goal the least stressful possible so I could concentrate on the race. In addition, I thought of how would I arrive to the event's location, how would I communicate with people, what about the local cost of things, what about the different customs of the country. In short, there were many things to worry about than just my Ironman, which I needed to concentrate on in order to finish well. It was no small stroke of luck that I found an ally in the people who are Endurance Sports Travel and throughout my journey they have been my 'Big Brother' and have not only helped me, but also kept me from making huge errors and mistakes.

Today, I have done 10 Ironman races and all of them I have finished, some more or less in the time I wanted to, but nonetheless happy, more so because I have traveled with my family and enjoyed doing so.

I want to share all of this with you since if it were not for my 'Big Brother', Endurance Sports Travel, none would have been possible.

Luis Mendes"

From Owen Martin:

I have being traveling with Endurance Sports Travel from 2006, and from that time, all the extra pressure of arriving at a race venue has being taken from me. As an Athlete who travels with family I was always concerned about my family during the race, having Ken and Ty there to look after them is a huge weight off my mind. Ken Glah is a world class Athlete and has always being very helpful in any concerns I had pre-race, the guy just knows everything you need to know. I can highly recommend EST as they simply leave your race experience that bit better and I am looking forward to traveling again this year with them.

Labor of Love

Catching up with Ken Glah

Ken Glah is not your average triathlon tour operator, nor is his company, Endurance Sports Travel, your average triathlon tour operation. Ken has been racing across the globe for more than three decades, has competed in over 70 Ironman races and has a record 28 consecutive finishes at the Ironman World Championship in Hawaii under his belt. He's won 6 Ironman races during his career — three in Brazil, one in Canada, and two in New Zealand, as well as the 1993 Ironman World Series Title. Ten years ago, Ken started a business which combines his passion for racing and his fascination for, and knowledge of other cultures, to encourage and enable athletes to race outside their home countries. We sat down with him to talk training, racing, and the ins and outs of creating unique, stress-free travel experiences for his clients competing across the world.

Tell us about your motivation for setting up Endurance Sports Travel.

I originally set up Endurance Sports Travel after becoming involved with the management of Ironman Brazil. I wanted to make it easy for people to travel to a race and for both the athlete and their family to enjoy the trip as well as the race.

Talk us through the process of booking a race trip for an athlete.

While booking basic items for a trip such as airfare, hotel and car rental are easy to do through the Internet or a travel agent, EST can do all that for you and so much more. You won't need a car, which in an unfamiliar city or country can relieve a lot of stress. Plus in some countries getting a car big enough for your bike and luggage is not easy or cheap, and if you do have a large vehicle and it’s a city race, then parking can be extremely expensive and/or hard to find. Just the money saved on the rental fee, gas, and parking could be enough to pay for all our services. We pick you up at the airport and take care of all transportation—all race functions, course tours, shopping, and at some races we take spectators to viewing points along the course with a hospitality area, and transport the athlete, family, equipment and bikes to and from the race site. We have staff on-site and available 24 hours a day along with translators. We have a network of the most amazing professional mechanics all over the world who have worked for EST for years. EST has massage therapists with us, and trusted local therapists. At some events we have ART therapists and sports psychologists. We organize day-trips, and in some cases after race tours. Between the knowledge of our full-time staff and assistants in countries all over the world, we know how to provide for the needs of athletes and spectators, from young children to adults into their 80's. I am confident no other service is as complete as ours for athletes or spectators.

Do you have any stories, pre-EST about your own experiences arranging to attend exotic races as an individual?

I traveled all over the world to race for close to 20 years before I started EST. Many times I had my parents along as well and then my daughter after she was born in 1993. So traveling with my elderly parents and an infant/young child definitely kept me on my toes. We had the normal issues that come with being on the road for 100 days or more in a year such as flight delays, lost luggage, illness or accidents and how to deal with these things and still stay focused on trying to win major races while making sure they were all okay and having fun. Having a bike mechanic at events now certainly helps so much as many times it was pre-race bike issues that would cause stress.

What is EST’s philosophy when it comes to customer service?

Our goal is to make all our clients (athletes and spectators) feel completely comfortable traveling to a destination race, and for the trip to be regarded as a great vacation, not just a race. We want everyone to feel they have received far more than they had paid for or expected. Word of mouth and repeat clients are what keep us growing, so it is imperative that at the end of a trip the clients leave thinking about where they want to travel next with EST and wanting to share their positive experience with others.

Share one or two of your favorite stories from EST clients about their experiences.

Once during a course tour I was leading by bus in Brazil I heard a woman say to another athlete "I’ve been so relaxed and having so much fun I forgot we have to do an Ironman in a few days." I had a guy write and say that he had so much fun and met so many people that he felt like he was at summer camp. The night after a race one year the father of an athlete turned to me and said, "This is the most fun I’ve had since college." Those types of comments make all the planning and work worthwhile.

Tell us about the growth of the company in terms of services and products.

After a successful first year in 2002 at Ironman Brazil, I added the half in Pucon, Chile. Then Ironman Switzerland approached me, and we started trips to Europe and then to another of my favorite places—New Zealand. We are now at over 25 races for 2012, and have had tours to races in 14 different countries. We went from working with 100 clients in 2002 up to just under 1000 this past year.

Tell us about your training philosophy and about the training programs EST offers.

I do work personally with a few athletes offering very individualized coaching myself, and refer clients to my friend Bill Hauser who has a full time coaching business called Mid-Atlantic Multisport. I believe very strongly in a lot of base work and a bit of tempo training but very little high-end speed training. I think this decreases injury, increases enjoyment and longevity in the sport and allows an athlete to reach a higher level of fitness.

How about the new Living the Dream camps?

The Living the Dream Camps are small personal camps that we are really starting to build on. The plan is to have approximately 12 people at the camps. We are flexible on the number of days people can attend the camp with this year's May camp being offered after I return from St. Croix, and before I leave for Ironman Brazil—May 10th through 17th. An athlete can come for 3 to 7 days of training in the beautiful Chester and Lancaster County areas that I have trained on for 40 years now. It's a chance to relax and train with others full time, while learning through informal Q and A sessions during the meals and training.

Thanks to Ken for the fascinating look at Endurance Sports Travel and his highly successful racing career.

Endurance Sports Travel Becomes Official IRONMAN® 70.3 Tour Operator

Industry-Leading Endurance Triathlon Tour Company to Act as Official Tour Operator for Ironman World Championship 70.3

Endurance Sports Travel is pleased to announce it will be the Official Tour Operator for the Ironman World Championship 70.3 taking place at Lake Las Vegas in Henderson, Nev., on Sept. 9, 2012. In agreement with World Triathlon Corporation (WTC), Endurance Sports Travel will be offering travel packages for all qualified athletes, family, and guests to the Ironman World Championship 70.3 in September.

After 11 years of offering tour packages for various Ironman and Ironman 70.3 races worldwide, former pro triathlete and 6-time Ironman Champion Ken Glah, owner of Endurance Sports Travel, is pleased to have this opportunity. “Every year, we have the chance to travel all over the world to countries as diverse as Brazil, Germany, and New Zealand. I love the idea that we will be able to offer our suite of services to our U.S. and international clientele for a world championship event of this caliber, here, in the U.S.,” states Glah.

Endurance Sports Travel will be offering accommodations at the Loews Lake Las Vegas Resort, the host hotel for this event. The Loews Lake Las Vegas is just minutes from the race start and will host both event banquet functions.