September 27, 2015
THE TEAM Z CLIFFâ€™S NOTES VERSION OF HOW TO SEE YOUR ZER ON THE SWIM, BIKE AND RUN COURSES OF IM CHOO CHOO
Coach Ed and Alexis will be at Team Z headquarters on Sunday morning to answer any questions you might have about spectating and logistics. Please read below for a brief description of the cheering opportunities at different locations of the IM course.
Google Map: 2015 IM CHATTANOOGA GOOGLE MAP: https://www.google.com/maps/d/edit?mid=zwxapENRSC1w.kRP4Z2f-w1iY&usp=sharing
SWIM (BY FAR THE LEAST SPECTATOR FRIENDLY PART OF THE RACE)
It’s true. It’s super crowded at the swim finish and the chances of seeing your Zer swimming are very low. Don’t believe me? Keep reading.
Option #1- Taking a shuttle to the swim start
If you really, really, really want to see your Zer on the swim course, you could hang out with us at the Team Z Headquarters tents, and then accompany them on a shuttle heading for the swim start. The shuttles begin running at 4:30 AM from Ross’s Landing. Hang out with your Zer at the swim start, say your goodbye’s/good luck’s and watch the beginning of the swim.
HERE’S THE CATCH- If you are a spectator, you will not be able to return to Ross’s Landing/Swim Finish before 8AM. This is when the spectator shuttles begin running. You may or may not see your Zer exit the swim. Also, it will be super crowded at the swim exit. Very stressful.
Option #2- Watch the swim from Veteran’s Bridge
It’s a 20 minute walk to Veteran’s Bridge from Team Z Headquarters.
You would say goodbye to your Zer at Team Z Headquarters and make the hilly trek to Veteran’s Bridge. The view of the swim is spectacular.
HERE’S THE CATCH- if you wait till after the age group swimmers are swimming underneath the bridge, the chances of you seeing YOUR Zer at the swim finish are very low. You might (MIGHT) see them, but they definitely won’t see you. Again it’s just too crowded at the swim finish.
Option #3- Stay at Team Z Headquarters
Say goodbye to your Zer at Team Z headquarters and plant yourself at the swim finish for the next 2.5 to 3 hours. In theory, this gives you the best shot at seeing your Zer at the swim finish.
HERE’S THE CATCH- You might see your Zer, but they really could care less about seeing you. It’s not that they don’t care or love you. It’s the fact that they have just completed a 2.4 mile swim and are now running up a hill to the transition area and doing everything in their power to avoid slipping and doing a face plant while slightly out of breath. Need I say more?
Option # 4- Go to the Team Z/Pigeon Mountain bike cheer station aka Team Z Party Central once the swim begins. (An excellent option)
Say goodbye to your Zer at Team Z Headquarters and have a coffee and bagel with us. The coaches will head over to the bike cheer station sometime before the pros exit the water. Doing this will allow us to follow the shortest route which is to follow the bike course and then take a short cut to Pigeon Mountain.
Pigeon Mountain will be serving awesome breakfast sandwiches till 11AM. After 11 they will transition to their lunch menu. In addition, we will have cold beverages and snacks. You will not be disappointed.
Option #5- AVOID SWIM START ALL TOGETHER AND HEAD DIRECTLY TO THE BIKE CHEER STATION. (Sweet!)
Say goodbye to your Zer the night before or the morning of the race. Sleep in till after 8 and make your way over to the bike cheer station.
The bottom line: If the goal is to see your Zer, your best options are the bike and run courses.
THE BIKE COURSE
Team Z will be at mile 42 and 89 of the bike course at the Pigeon Mountain Country Store. This location is one of the best I’ve seen for spectating. It’s got shelter, a bathroom, picnic tables, and a restaurant with inexpensive and awesome food. We will be blasting the tunes and cheering like crazy. You get two excellent chances of seeing your Zer on the bike course. This location rocks! Here are your options for cheering at this location:
OPTION #1– Leave from Team Z headquarters/Ross’s Landing BEFORE the swimmers exit the water and take the short, easy route to Pigeon Mountain. This is what the coaches will be doing.
Pigeon Mountain Address: 18381 Hwy 193, Chickamauga, GA
On or before 8AM, we bolt from Team Z headquarters. Here is the route will be taking:
- Head South on Chestnut St.
- Left onto West 20th/Highway 64
- Right onto Market St./Rt. 58
- Right onto 40th Street
- Left onto Tennessee Ave.
- Right onto 45th Street
- Left onto St. Elmo Ave/Hwy 193
- Cross Hwy 136
- Veer Left to stay on Hwy 193(Do not take the right onto Cove Road)
- Follow Hwy.193 until you get to the intersection of 193 and Hog Jowl Rd./Rt. 341
OPTION #2- Leave swim exit/Team Z Headquarters/Ross’s Landing AFTER the swimmers exit the water.
The bike course will be filling up with cyclists. We recommend taking an alternate route around the bike course. It will help avoid the bike course altogether. These are the directions from Ross’s Landing/Team Z Headquarters. This will also be the way you get back to the run course.
From Ross’s Landing:
- Head south and make a right onto use 4th street.
- Take TN-27 to get to I-24E. Do not attempt to use Market Street onramp
- Take exit 180B to TN27/US-27 S
- Stay on 27 to Lafayette
- Left onto Grant St.
- Right onto Rt.1
- Turn Left onto GA-193/W Main St
- Stay on GA-193 until you get to the corner of GA-193 and Rt.341. Pigeon Mountain is on the right.
About an hour from downtown b/c we are taking indirect routes to least affect the race
Although the bike course is open till 6PM, Coach Ed will head back early (3PMish) and go to the run cheer station in order to catch some of the faster Zers on the run course.
- Left onto Rt. 193 towards Lafayette
- Right onto S. Main St.
- Left on Grant St.
- Left onto Rt. 27
- Right onto N27/W 136 (North Main St.)
- Right onto N27/E Rt.2/I-25
- Left onto Lafayette Rd.
- Right ramp onto I-24/Nashville
- Right onto Exit 1-C/4th
- Left onto Chestnut and head towards Team Z headquarters to watch Zers exit the bike onto the run course.
- Keep straight on 4th until you get to Georgia Ave.
- Left onto Georgia Ave. which leads you north onto Veterans Bridge.
- Turns into Barton St.
- Head north to the corner of Barton and Hixson.
Without a doubt, the run is the best option for seeing the Zers. Cheer Station #3 is at Miles 9, 11, 22 and 24. This part of the run course in no joke hard. If you want to make the biggest impact on your Zer, this is where you can do it. They will need your support more than ever.
There are four viable options for the run course
Option #1– Stay at Team Z headquarters and see your Zer start the run. They will also finish here as well. You will see your Zer twice, but it could be a while before you see them at the finish line.
Option # 2- Watch your Zer exit onto the run course from Team Z headquarters. Then walk over to the corner of Riverfront Parkway and Lookout St. It’s a short but very hilly walk. You can get there by walking on East Aquarium Way. There is also parking lot one block away. Coach Ed. saw it 2/3rds empty during IM Choo Choo 70.3. But this is an IM and the dynamics are different. It’s worth a shot, especially if you have someone who doesn’t want to or can’t walk a lot. In theory, you could drive someone to the corner of Lookout and Riverfront and park your car one black away.
Option #3- Go the Cheer Station #3 and stay for miles 9, 11 and 22 of the run, then bolt over to Team Z Headquarters and see your Zer cross the finish line.