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Top professional triathlete shares what racing in the dark was REALLY like at the Miami T100

Paula Findlay details what it was like to race the Miami T100 bike leg without floodlights for large sections of the course, which caused confusion both on the ground and on the live broadcast.

Staff Reporter
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Whilst the racing at the Miami T100 was excellent, the quality of the broadcast in Florida raised some eyebrows, with much of the bike leg in the women’s race hampered by audio and visual issues.

Racing without floodlights on some sections of the course, the darkness not only impacted the viewing experience but more importantly the race, with athletes forced to navigate technical sections in the dark.

In her race recap on YouTube, fourth place finisher Paula Findlay details how the lack of light impacted her race and what it was really like for the professionals on the ground.

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“We were assured that the lights would be on”

Before the race, Findlay shared that her concerns of racing in the dark were zero, despite the 5:00pm start time, given that they had been assured the track would be completely lit.

Paula Findlay PTO Canadian Open T2
[Photo by Darren Wheeler (www.thatcameraman.com)]

“We were assured by Bill Christy from Clash that the lights would be on full blast and it would look like daytime, with how bright these lights are, because they host NASCAR races there so it has to be bright.

“My concerns were zero about it being too dark, I’ve raced at Daytona before in the dark, and there was never a problem.

“The issue in Miami was that the inner road course was inside of the track and the lights were on the outside oval.

“When we were on the outside oval, it was okay, but on the inner road, which happens to be the technical part, it was really really dark.”

“I was just following the lights in front of me!”

So dark was the track in Miami, that on the sections away from the floodlights, Findlay admits she relied on the lights from the RaceRanger mounts on the bikes ahead to guide her through the course.

“I had my visor on and I spent two laps navigating this super sketchy inner track and was just looking at RaceRanger lights in front of me, because that’s all I could see so I was just following the lights.

“There were then sirens and an ambulance, I thought someone had crashed, and they were telling us to slow down on one of the corners and it was just hectic.”

Despite the commotion, the Canadian said she didn’t “think it was quite as dark as it appeared on the broadcast”, but did still feel the impact out on course. Racing next at IRONMAN 70.3 Oceanside, the PTO World #7 will hope for a much more uneventful bike leg.

Tomos Land
Written by
Tomos Land
Tomos Land is a triathlon & running journalist whose expertise lies in the professional world of short course & long distance triathlon, though he also boasts an extensive knowledge of ultra-running.

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