They say it’s not how many times you fall, but how many times you get back up. Boulder’s Drew Scott may have taken quite a spill earlier this year, but he is back on the horse and finding his racing stride just in time for the IRONMAN 70.3 World Championships. We caught up with Drew in this edition of Colorado Triathlete’s “Quick Six” to find out how he’s bounced back from a severe crash, managed an astonishing finish at ITU Long Course Worlds, and prepares to take on the best 70.3 triathletes in the world!
Colorado Triathlete: We know you wrecked before IRONMAN South Africa earlier this year. Tell us about what happened and how it’s affected your season.
Drew Scott: Yes, it wasn’t my brightest move crashing about six days out from IMSA in April. I wish I had a great story, but I was just pre-riding part of the course on a straight piece of road and somehow managed to slip off my bars after hitting a bump or pothole and went sailing into a ditch on the side of the road. I tried to manage things leading into the race, but was unable to run. So I made the call not to start. After having an MRI once I returned to Boulder, it turned out I had a few minor compression fractures in my spine. Obviously, that pushed my season back quite a bit and I am now in a similar position to last year in terms of my racing schedule and not beginning until July.
CT: What was your first race back after the crash and how did you feel it went?
DS: I had done a small local sprint, the Lookout Mountain Tri, and the Boulder Peak Triathlon prior to racing IRONMAN 70.3 Boulder. I just felt like I needed any racing opportunity I could get coming back. While I had higher hopes for both hometown races, my run fell far short of where it needed to be to be competitive. Boulder 70.3 was a tough one to swallow as I have always loved racing at home, but fell far short of my expectations on the day.
CT: What were your goals going into ITU Long Course Worlds?
DS: My goal was quite simple, put together a swim, bike and run that I know I’m capable of and have a race that I could be proud of. Having competed at the test event (Challenge Penticton) last year, ironically on a similar build up to this year post injury, I had a good idea of where I was. But I really needed to execute on the day.
CT: Tell us a little bit about how you felt on race day and how things went overall on the swim, bike and run for you.
DS: I was a bit off on the swim, but was quite comfortable once I got on the bike and felt pretty good throughout the ride. I spent most of the day with Joe Gambles and we got off the bike in fourth and fifth. Within the first few hundred meters of the run I knew I had decent legs and just tried to focus on my own race and run in control. Joe came by me about 8km into the run and, after a bit of a low spot around 11km, I was able to rebound some and was quite happy to finish up in sixth. I knew I couldn’t have done anything more.
CT: With such a great finish at Long Course Worlds, how did you feel after the race?
DS: Relieved more than anything! It was a confirmation of where I felt I was at physically and it felt great to put it together on race day, especially after my performance at Boulder 70.3.
CT: What are your race goals for the rest of this season?
DS: The end of the year is still pretty wide open for me. I’m planning to race the IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship next weekend in Chattanooga. I have never raced any World Champ events as a professional, so I figured there’s no better time with two races in two weeks! The bigger races are really what get me excited and the energy around them is pretty special, so I’m looking forward to it. After 70.3 Worlds, I’m doing an Escape Series race, but am still undecided on the end of the season. I want to be as consistent as possible in my remaining races this season and can hopefully build off my race last weekend.