In 1 year, 6 days, Ragen Chastain claims she will swim 2.4 miles, bike 112 miles, and run a full marathon in under 17 hours at IRONMAN Arizona in Tempe, AZ on November 20, 2016. Her only endurance event experience to date consists of abusing the course rules at the 2013 Seattle Marathon to keep the volunteers there for over 12 hours, registering and not showing up for two local super sprint triathlons (1/16 IRONMAN distance), and failing to complete even the first segment at IRONMAN 70.3 Arizona in October this year.
In a recent radio interview, Ragen re-affirmed her strong commitment to entering the full IRONMAN Arizona in 2016 as planned, despite her disastrous performance at IRONMAN 70.3 Arizona. To fulfill this commitment, Ragen must decide how she will register for the event by Monday, November 16. The only realistic options we were previously aware of to secure a registration spot for IMAZ were to volunteer at the previous year’s event, or else commit to raising at least $5,000 for the chosen charity partner. Ragen is also well aware of the popularity of the event and her registration options, and actually wrote an epic tale in March about her battle to register for the 70.3 the morning registration opened, which like all IRONMAN 70.3 events didn’t even sell out for a further 5-6 months.
This year there was an unusual third option for athletes to register for IMAZ. Race organizers set aside a limited number of spots for athletes to compete in both IMAZ and IRONMAN 70.3 Arizona in 2016. These cost $990 vs. $725 for an on-site IMAZ registration on Monday, and did not require any volunteer or charity commitment, or that athletes actually compete in both events. Registration opened on Friday morning and remained open for the rest of the day. This would have been by far the best option for Ragen, paying only $265 extra to avoid the the cost of travelling to volunteer or having to ask her supporters to fork over $5,000 for her vanity IMAZ entry. However, it it would appear she did not take advantage of it.
There have been no IronFat updates since the Arizona 70.3 race report almost four weeks ago, and Ragen has said nothing about volunteering on Facebook, despite our previous posts on the subject. On Thursday, Ragen all but confirmed she would not be volunteering in Tempe by announcing mysterious speaking engagements at Cornell University on Friday and Saturday. As it turned out, she was an unnamed participant in some workshops at IvyQ, a small student LGBTQ conference, and was not in fact invited to Cornell as part of her fat activism. As an aside, it is becoming increasingly obvious Ragen is trying hard to make a name for herself as a fat person in the world of queer rights activism. Newer readers may not be aware queer rights activism is quite possibly the only subject Ragen is truly passionate about, and it was her life goal to retire at 35 and become a queer rights activist. As usual for Ragen, she took the easy route and settled for quitting her disastrous turnaround CEO position the day she turned 35 and becoming a fat activist to pay the bills when her queer rights career failed to materialize.
As of Saturday night at 6:46 PM EST, Ragen was still in Ithaca, NY, and it is now impossible for her to get to Phoenix to volunteer at IMAZ. Her only remaining registration option is to ask her followers to donate at least $5,000 for a charity entry. In the charity entry waiver, the athlete actually agrees to cover any shortfall in fundraising with their own money, which means Ragen could be legally bound to pay a significant amount of money if her supporters don’t put their money where their mouths are and fund their “shero” on her journey to glory at IMAZ.
In registering with Smile Train IRONMAN Team, I understand that all funds raised will support Smile Train. Therefore, I am responsible for completing the fundraising requirement. $5,000 must be raised by the date one week before the date of the event. If I do not raise this full amount of $5,000, I will be personally responsible for the remaining amount. I understand that if I withdraw from the event due to any personal reasons or injury I will still be responsible for the minimum fundraising amount of $5,000 regardless of whether or not I participate in the event. I understand that if I have not submitted the fundraising minimums by the fundraising deadline as indicated above, I authorize Smile Train to charge the balance of the minimum pledge amount due to my credit card listed on this form one week before the date of the event.
In the coming days, we should learn how Ragen decides to play this situation. Will she ask her followers to fund a charity entry? Will she feign ignorance and claim she had no idea IMAZ was so popular? At this point it is a complete mystery.
1 year, 6 days until Tempe.