Triathlon Magazine Canada
THE LIFE OF TRI PODCAST
“I’M DOING THIS for fun,” Phil Wrochna often says either just before, or just after, we record one of our podcasts. “It’s just good to catch up every week.”
That’s a good, thing, too, because he’s not going to be quitting his teaching job anytime soon with the proceeds from our show. The Life of Tri is Wrochna’s way of staying involved in, well, his former triathlon life. I’ve known the Australian for almost 20 years now. About a decade ago we co-hosted the live coverage of Ironman New Zealand, but I got to know him many years before that as the founder of the firstoffthebike.com. For many years Wrochna and his crew were the leading triathlon media outlet in Australia, generating lots of stories and video content before he sold the company in 2017.
I’d like to think that what works with The Life of Tri is that Wrochna has no qualms about stirring the pot and is willing to serve as the more outrageous of the two of us. He routinely makes fun of the “bland Canadian” he’s chatting with. (I’d like to think that I’m just more thorough and willing to explore both sides of an issue, but what do I know.)
Despite having to get up at 4:45 a.m. to record the show most weeks (the challenges of having a host in Australia and another in Canada), the podcast remains one of the most enjoyable things I do in a week. Wrochna will often begin an episode with one of his pet peeves—as a word of warning, don’t take a metal detector to a beach in Australia in case he might see you, and if you really want to avoid a tongue-lashing, don’t try to tell him that dual climate controls work in a car. And, like so many Aussies do, he often tries to complain about how “cold” it is during the Australian winters.
While there are lots of issues that we disagree on every week, one thing that we wholeheartedly agreed on during an episode we recorded in June centred on Laura Philipp’s incredible performance at Ironman Hamburg. While the world’s attention was focused on the Sub7/Sub8 Project (see Race Report, p.54), Philipp was blasting to the second-fastest full-distance race ever. Her 8:18:20 was just seven seconds slower than Chrissie Wellington’s “world best” time set at Challenge Roth in 2011. As impressive as all the performances were at the Sub7/ Sub8 event, both Wrochna and I concurred that Philipp’s breakthrough performance in Hamburg eclipsed them. Unfortunately, we were guilty of almost missing Philipp’s performance in this issue, too—I’d set aside space for a short news piece on the Sub7/Sub8 race as a last-minute addition, never imagining we’d see an 8:18 performance come from Hamburg.
Luckily enough, our excellent art director gives me enough slack every issue to make this editorial one of the last pieces to end up in the issue, which affords me the opportunity to catch up on performances like Philipp’s.
It also gives me a chance to promote that bit of “fun” that Phil Wrochna and I embark on every week. If you haven’t, do me a favour and give it a listen. (You can find it on iTunes and Spotify.) I hope it turns out to be as fun for you as it is for the annoying Aussie and the calm Canuck who make it every week. (I am going to pay for that description, I know, but it will be worth it.)