While not as forehead-slapping a portrayal of wealth as Evan Osnos’ glorious New Yorker story about the world of ultrayachts, Devin Gordon’s dive into how CEOs do triathlons is a worthy successor. Between the $20,000 bicycles and the $15,000 entry fees of Ironman’s XC (“executive challenge”) tier, you’ll find an entertaining read that’s half arched eyebrow, half grudging respect for how fully these weekend warriors throw themselves into competition — without sacrificing convenience.
In Mont-Tremblant, the hotel nearest the starting line was the Ermitage du Lac, a rustic lodge nestled at the base of the stone footpath that bisects Mont-Tremblant’s candy-colored ski village, just a few hundred yards from the swim start on the shore of Lac Tremblant. There was a more luxurious hotel, the Fairmont, at the crest of the hill, but the Fairmont’s luxuries — spa services, swanky bar, fancy bathroom products — hold little appeal for the kind of people who spend their very limited leisure time competing in an Ironman. You’d have to schlep your gear all the way down that hill at 5 a.m.! That’s inefficient. That’s poor optimization. XC runs the way XCers like their businesses to run. For them, true luxury is everything in its right place, operating like clockwork.