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Pros Share Emotions As They Prepare to Race the PTO Championships

The sport's top athletes are a mix of nervousness, uneasiness, and excitement as they get ready to vie for $1.15 million.

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The 2020 non-triathlon season is coming to a close in an interesting way—with the sport’s top names heading to Daytona, Florida for the PTO Championships, where there is a whopping $1.15 million on the line. For many of these professional triathletes it represents the first, last, and only opportunity to earn a healthy paycheck in 2020. So despite the COVID-19 pandemic, they’re traveling to the Florida’s east coast from around the world for a shot at prize money and the thrill of competition.

Thanks to the power of social media, we’re getting a glimpse of the feelings (nervousness, uneasiness, and excitement) that these pros are experiencing in the biggest and one of the most-anticipated races of the year. Here some of our favorite Instagram posts, and check back as we continue to report on the PTO Championship from Challenge Daytona.

RELATED: How to Watch the PTO Championships in Daytona (And Who We Think Could Win)

Some pros shared a peek at some of their final training sessions before heading to Florida. Both Lionel Sanders and Heather Jackson wrapped things up in Tucson, while Ironman world champion Anne Haug finished her training in chilly Germany.

Lionel Sanders

Heather Jackson

Anne Haug
https://www.instagram.com/p/CILWmFABYin/

Many highlighted the fact that it’s a strange time of year to be peaking for a championship race. Rudy Von Berg finished up a long ride on snow-filled roads, while Carrie Lester did one of her last hard efforts on Thanksgiving.

Rudy Von Berg

Carrie Lester

Traveling right now is super strange, especially if you’re traveling from overseas—which is the case with Michelle Vesterby. Rachel McBride shared the reality of how hard the racing decision was. Do you stay home and forfeit a guaranteed paycheck, or compete with the current risk of the pandemic?

Michelle Vesterby
https://www.instagram.com/p/CISpv3Zlaer/

Rachel McBride

The Professional Triathlon Organisation has promised to give pro athletes a voice in the sport. Part of that includes provided media hits before the race.

Henri Schoeman

British brothers Alistair Brownlee and Jonathan Brownlee traveled from the UK to compete against the world’s best. Alistair has recently moved to long-course but still hopes to compete in Tokyo next summer, while Jonathan has already been named to Great Britain’s 2021 Olympic team.

Alistair Brownlee

Far and away the most pre-race social media comes straight from the iconic Daytona International Speedway, where the pros will swim, bike, and run on Sunday.

Sebastian Kienle

Sarah Anne Crowley

Ben Hoffman

Holly Lawrence

Laura Philipp

Skye Moench

Peter Heemeryck

Paula Findlay

Sam Appleton

Amelia Watksinson

Lisa Roberts

Jackie Herin

Ruedi Wild

Matt McILroy

Part of the promise from the PTO is that fans will be able to easily watch the race. Here’s how to watch the PTO Championship from Daytona, Florida.