Male Triathlete of the Year Award

Presented by Bill Dillon

I am honored to have the privilege to a say a few words about the 2016 Male Triathlete of the Year.  To say that this year’s winner is a fine athlete is a given.  Tallahassee is home to a number of outstanding male and female triathletes and this year’s winner is no exception.  However, aside from his athletic accomplishments, which are impressive, this person is more than just an athlete, this person gives back to both the triathlon and running communities in Tallahassee.  Additionally and perhaps most importantly this individual is just an all- around good guy.  So before I announce his name let me just spend a couple of minutes talking about both his athletic and community accomplishments.

This year’s winner started in triathlon around 2009/2010 and while always a pretty good athlete he was not at the elite level right out of the gate, he had to work for it.  From starting out with local races like Tri the Rez and Red Hills, he progressed on up the race ladder to begin racing the half-ironman and full-ironman distances. Then if racing a 140.6 miles in single race wasn’t crazy enough our winner decided to take on a challenge that, to my knowledge, only two other athletes in our community have participated in, the Ultraman.  The Ultraman is a 3 day ultra-endurance race that is limited to athletes that have demonstrated significant success and experience in other ultra-distance races.  Day 1 of the event is a 6.2 mile swim/followed by a 92 mile bike; Day 2 is 171 miles on the bike; following by Day 3 a double marathon 52.4 miles.  To complete this race is impressive enough, to do it with a fairly significant lower leg injury is just amazing. 

If racing a 321.6 mile race wasn’t impressive enough our winner took a fairly minimal amount of time off and jumped into the Tri Club’s Grand Prix schedule just before the mid-point of the schedule and competed strongly enough to score the most points in the club’s Grand Prix competition.  By now you must know that I am talking about Jon Nash.

If Jon’s racing schedule wasn’t exhausting enough, he was also very involved in the triathlon and running community.  Jon serves on the tri club board and does his best to promote the sport and encourage our members.  Much like his racing schedule Jon is an over doer. For the last two years Jon has raced the Ironman Augusta 70.3 race, finished the race and jumped in his car to drive to Chattanooga to cheer on club members racing Ironman Chattanooga on the same day.  For anybody that has ever done a half-ironman the last thing you want to do right after the race is to jump in a car and drive for several hours.    The last thing after that is to get out of the car and go onto the Ironman run course until late in the evening.  But that is exactly what Jon has done the last two years, encouraging our members until the last person has crossed the finish line.  

Because Jon doesn’t have enough to do, when our good friend Mike Burns was expressing concern about handing off the race director duties for the Palace Saloon 5k, Jon stepped up and agreed to take on the responsibility.  In fact, Jon was so concerned about helping Mike that he figured out a way to keep the Mike Burn’s Waverly Too Fun miler alive on New Year’s Day. 

Without further ado please give a round of applause for the 2016 Male Triathlete of the Year Jon Nash.