For IM Canada and IM CDA I purchased my finisher photos. I feel this nostalgia towards finisher photos. I won't spend a dime in the Ironman merchandise store (except at Kona) but I'll buy the official finisher photo in a heartbeat. And not an actual photo, but the digital download. For me it's that final check mark, the "Yep, got it done" and I've never purchased a finisher photo for any other events. Not marathons, or 70.3's. It's just something about the Ironman. So, I was excited for the Kona photos to come out so that I could put my finisher photo as the last one on the final blog post....
...then they came out. Mine was not so good, well, it was good, but not good. The thing is, my finisher photo looks more like a picture of the girl in front of me...it looks like her finisher shot. So, I didn't buy it.
Today Ironman sent an email today saying "Hey, we need more of your money, wanna buy your finisher photo" and thus I ended up looking at them again.
I remember the girl in front of me. I wrote about her on my blog. Coming down Ali'i I saw her and thought "What if she is in my age group" and I sprinted, hard. I pulled up close enough to her and saw that there were 3 numbers on her arm. That meant she was a PRO having a rough day (since they started 30 minutes ahead) so I pulled back and enjoyed the most awesome finish line in the world.
So I'm looking at the photo again today...because of the email, and I decide to look up who the PRO is that was in front of me. It's Hillary Biscay. I LOVE Hillary Biscay!!! She's gutsy, she's talented and she's not afraid to say "I LOVE Ironmans so I'm going to race as many of them as I can manage." Which this year I think is 9? She is nearing the 50 Ironman mark and she won Wisconsin in 08. She had a rough day out there in Kona, but if you read her blog you can tell that she is Iron-tough in the mind. Her blog is a great one to keep up on!
So, the minute I found out it was Hillary, I couldn't pull out my debit card fast enough. I was giving Ironman yet another $38.43 of my money. Go figure. I hope that maybe one day I can meet Hillary and let her know that when she was having a hard day at her job, she was giving me the opportunity to have one of my role models in my finisher picture. Now it has suddently become one of the most special finisher pictures I have. Keep rocking Hillary, keep going your own direction, and keep asking the big questions, like "Why not do 9 IMs in a year". We need people like you! We need women like you!