Record turnout for triathlon
Waiting list for 25th annual St. Albert Triathlon on Sunday after registration total peaks at 350
Saturday, Aug 09, 2014 06:00 am
The St. Albert Triathlon celebrates its 25th anniversary with a record turnout Sunday morning at Fountain Park Recreation Centre.
An all-time high of 350 registrations were achieved last Thursday for the sprint distance (750-metre swim, 20-kilometre bike and five-km run), try-a-tri (250m swim, 10-km bike and 2.5-km run) and relay team.
“Response this year has been huge!” said James Dean, race director for the St. Albert Road Runners and Triathlon Club event.
Registrations were initially capped at 325 but an extra 25 spots were added and those were filled by last Saturday for the Alberta Triathlon Association sanctioned race. It’s also part of the ATA’s five-race series (age group and elite) point ranking system.
“We set up a wait-list and currently have 13 people on it and growing. We are trying to accommodate some of them but a few will be disappointed,” Dean said. “I am hoping we can make it work for our wait listers but we are limited by a few factors. We also want to ensure the race is safe and fun for everyone.”
The huge demand can be traced to the ITU World Championships in three weeks at Hawrelak Park in Edmonton.
“St. Albert’s own Sheila O’Kelly has done a tremendous job of bringing such a world class event here and I think quite a few triathletes are using our race as a warm-up,” Dean said.
Organizers also met their goal of 130 volunteers for the triathlon.
“Response from our community was swift this year on that also,” Dean said.
This year the ageless Richard Roberts of St. Albert will race against time in his 25th straight St. Albert Triathlon. Last year in the 70-plus age group Roberts was the top male in one hour, 39 minutes and 35 seconds for 144th place overall.
Roberts’ wife, Catherine, was also first in the 65 to 69 female age group at 1:35:08 for 119th place overall.
Last year’s triathlon featured 197 finishers in the sprint distance, 38 in the try-a-tri and nine sprint teams.
The sprint distance champion was Edmonton’s Matt Dean, James’ younger brother, at 1:00:15
The fastest female was Alexandra Gordichuk of Edmonton at 1:06:44 for sixth place overall.
Two years ago 182 competitors completed the sprint race, 42 finished the try-a-tri and eight teams participated.
This year’s triathlon starts at 7 a.m. and the post-race awards ceremony begins approximately at 11 a.m. at the finish line.
Visit www.starrt.com for more information.