Qualicum Beach Triathlon on Sunday

Qualicum Beach Triathlon on Sunday

Around 500 tri-athletes expected at 21st annual competitition

The annual QF Qualicum Beach Triathlon will take place Sunday, June 24, starting at the Ravensong Aquatic Centre.

The community-oriented fun and competitive event is in its 21st year. It is open to tri-athletes who are newcomers to the sport and also to seasoned veterans. Adults can compete as an invidividual participant or be part of a team.

Last year the triathlon drew around 450 athletes and organizers are expecting around 500 to participate this coming Sunday.

According to orgnaizer Jim Powell, the event is basically full with 300 youth, minors and tiny tri competing, and 200 adults entered either as an individual competitor or as part of a team.

“It should be a great event,” said Powell.

The traditional order of athlete start times will be reversed this year with adults, age 18 years and over, going first, followed by the youth, and then minors and then the tiny triathlon, which will be held later in the day.

This new structure, Powell said, would allow parents, who are in the adult events, the chance to watch their tiny tri-athletes, age four-seven years old, compete.

The other change is that the cyclist’s bike will be marked with race number stickers to allow security to check those entering and leaving the transition area. So participants’ race number must match the number on their bike to get in or out of the transition area. However, parents can help minors (ages 7-11) to set up their bike and other equipment in the transition area but must leave before the race gets underway. For tiny tri, an adult or teenager may accompany the child through the cycle and run courses.

Athletes 18 years and older race a course with a 400 metre swim (16 lengths), 20.5k bike route and a 5k run. Co-ed athletes of 12-14 year old boys and 15-17 year old girls run a course with a 200 metre swim (eight lengths), 12.3k bike route and a 2.5k run.

The schedule is as follows (heats are every 20 min);

• 8 a.m. to 10 – Seven adult heats in the pool. Fastest is in last at 10 a.m.

• 10:20 a.m. and 10:40 a.m. – Two youth heats

• 11 a.m. to 12:20 p.m. — Five minor heats

•12:45 p.m. — Tiny tri (three groups – red, yellow and blue)