After completing their second of five Ironman triathlons at 1 a.m. in Honolulu on Saturday, May 8, Richard Roll and Jason Lester faced a few hours sleep before rising at dawn to catch a flight to Molokai for their third Ironman. It wasn’t a pretty prospect.
By Mark Johnson
The two ultra-triathletes finished their second triathlon in the middle of the night because of logistical delays and bike parts that went missing when they flew from Kauai to Oahu the previous day. They did not start their marathon until 7:30 p.m.. After finishing the over five-hour run, which followed the Honolulu Marathon course, Roll Twittered “Holy ridiculousness. Too tired to elaborate.”
When the sun came up hours later, Roll and Lester decided that, instead of pushing themselves to collapse, they would postpone their third Ironman for a day. They slept in on Oahu and took a later flight across the 25-mile Kaiwi Channel to Molokai. There, they checked in to a coffee house plantation and spend Saturday recharging with meals that included quinoa, vegan fettucine alfredo, squash and fresh whole grain breads.
According to Molly Kline, a Zoot Sports employee and EPIC5 sponsor who has been following and assisting the event, the two athletes decided to push their third triathlon out a day because “they are out there to enjoy it, not really race it, so they might as well take the extra rest time and rest up a bit.”
Roll and Lester will still do five triathlons. “They just wanted to take that day to regroup.”
The transition from Oahu to Molokai will be dramatic. EPIC5 crew member Rex Vlcek noted that traffic on the densely populated Oahu slowed the athletes‘ progress on both the bike and run legs. Without a single stoplight on the 38 by 10 mile island that rises nearly 5000 feet high above the Pacific, Molokai offers rural, traffic-free bliss.
After completing Ironman three today on the former leper colony island, EPIC5 will carry on with the fourth Ironman on Maui on Sunday and wrap up a day later than originally planned on Kona.
Follow the event at Competitor.com and epic5.com/live