A talk with Scott Curry

Scott Curry had the fastest bike split at the 2008 Ironman Canada, and finished in 11th place. After the race he was quite outspoken about some issues in the pro field and talked to Slowtwitch about it.

ST: Scott you sounded quite annoyed after Ironman Canada. What happened?

Scott: I was disappointed to see what I would qualify as drafting within the pro-field. I’m not talking about blatant wheel on wheel drafting as often witnessed amongst age-groupers. I’m referring to a pace line of athletes that was often considered legal, but would slink together like an accordion and shuffle order every now and then depending on terrain changes. During these moments, often pack members would come closer than the 10m zone while letting up on their pedals so as to not get too obviously close to the rider ahead. It seemed like the pack had a group mentality that was content with coming and going in and out of this legal limit.

ST: So I guess you think that the legal distance for the Pro field is not large enough?

Scott: I think the issue would be helped having the draft zone increased to 25m (I think most people would believe is feasible for the pro field). We want the guess-work out of the draft zone. If you come remotely close to another person’s draft, then you better be continuing on your way to make a pass.

ST: With the rules being as they are, what do you think should be done by officials to prevent such issues??

Scott: Speaking for most pros, we DON’T want warnings. We WANT penalties called. No pussy-footing the issue,…if you see it, please don’t talk yourself out of giving us a penalty waiting for it to happen a second time, or third, etc. We’ll quickly learn that pushing the boundary means that we’re playing with fire.

ST: Did you approach the officials after the race and say something to them?  If so, what did they say?

Scott: During the race, I spoke with the official - I've outlined what was said in my post, except for one other thing he replied after he gave a couple non-drafting, yellow carded violations to two of the pack members, "I hate to give penalties,...I hated to do it".  After the race, I spoke with Graham Fraser, what he said is between him and I; however, I came away from our conversation, feeling better about the future.

ST: You managed the fastest bike split at IM Canada despite a stand down. I thought you were pacing yourself?

Scott: I was pacing myself. In my opinion, to ride smart there’s no rush or need to go fast from the start. I served a penalty at the top of Richter’s pass for tossing a bottle of water after the ‘last chance toss’ sign.

ST: What is your athletic background and who or what inspired you to race triathlons?

Scott: I was introduced to triathlons by my older brother Brent, who excelled at them. I started racing when I was 15 years old; 18 years ago. I was a middle of the pack junior at best, and quickly fell madly in love with the sport. I was inspired by my hero, Dave Scott.

ST: Please describe a typical hard training week for us.

Scott: My last big week (3 weeks prior) to IMC was 27hours total, 20km swimming, 17hours of biking, and 5.5hours of running. I continue to put in my professional work as a chiropractor about 30hours/week.

ST: What do you do to overcome a disappointing race?

Scott: When I fail to perform, I become quite self-analytical for a short while. I’m constantly figuring out things that make me race better. I call them, “pieces of the pie” – I’m never emotionally down too long, as I appreciate it’s just part of the process.

ST: How are things going for you in terms of sponsorship?

Scott: I’ve consciously aligned myself with the companies that make superior products. Guru bicycles make finely hand-crafted, fully customizable works of art on wheels – my chrono is such a beautiful ride. Zoot Sports is a very impressive company with lots of top of the line product from apparel and wetsuits to shoes. HED cycling makes the best wheels in the world – I used the new Jet C2’s at Ironman Canada, and fell madly in love with them.

ST: Do you have any thoughts on how the triathlon sport could be improved other than drafting enforcement?

Scott: I think RDs are doing a pretty incredible good job keeping their customers happy. The overall experience people are having at triathlon events is why the sport continues to enjoy exponential growth. That being said, I’ve thought that a neat future idea would involve using individual GPS receivers to track and record data specific to each person’s race. This may eventually yield an opportunity to generate a reproducible visual output representing someone’s race that could be compared with another athlete of interest.

ST: How do you typically spend the off-season?

Scott: I tend to increase my working hours at my chiropractic practice. I also like to do a bit of cross-country skiing and hiking.

ST: Do you follow any other sports?

Scott: I’m interested in following a few sports (mostly hockey) with casual interest, but it doesn’t go much further than that.

ST: Can you share with us some of your food likes and dislikes?

Scott: I ought to try to get sponsored by AMY’s pizzas – I seem to go through a few of them every week. I try to eat organic fruits and veggies whenever possible. I love nuts,…unfortunately nuts don’t like me. My least favorite foods are canned tuna, radishes, veggie-mite, and Brussels sprouts - ew!

ST: What about music? Anything you listen to more often?

Scott: I love listening to Coldplay, the music evokes a raw emotional response with me.

ST: What was the last book you read?

Scott: Influencer: The Power to Change Anything

ST: Where do you see yourself in 5 years?

Scott: I’ll be a dad by then, with a healthy chiropractic practice, and racing faster.

ST: Is there anything else we should know about you?

Scott: No. Thank you kindly for the interview.