When the starting gun fired Sunday at the Ironman North American Championship at Mont-Blanc, Quebec, Philadelphia Flyers development coach Ian Laperriere was ready to go.
The 16-year NHL veteran had been hoping more than six months of training for his first Ironman -- a grueling 2.4-mile swim, followed by a 112-mile bike ride and capped by a 26.2-mile run -- wouldn't go to waste following a recent accident.
Two weeks ago Laperriere fell off his bike on one of his final training rides; the result was a recurrence of the concussion symptoms that had forced him to announce his retirement in June 2012.
Laperriere told NHL.com he wasn't sure if he was suffering from concussion-related issues or whiplash, because the symptoms are the same.
"I hurt my neck," he said. "I'm moving but I got those headache symptoms I know all too well."
Laperriere went to Montreal, about 90 minutes south of Mont-Tremblant, hoping he would feel well enough to run.
"I still have a little bit of time," he said. "I'll get some treatment. I have a therapist in town that hopefully can fix everything."
The treatment must have worked, because Laperriere is back working toward his goal of completing the race.