Ear-to-ear grins and exclamations such as, “I had so much fun!” indicate that the 32nd annual Shoreline Orthodontics Comox Valley Tri-K Triathlon on May 25 was a huge success.
Over 500 participants challenged themselves to either complete all three disciplines or join a team and share the fun.
Competition was tight to determine the ultimate winner of the John Siemens Memorial Trophy, with only 31 seconds separating the top three racers from two age categories. Twelve-year-old Danielle Leipoldt edged out Jordyn Ryan by five seconds to finish as the top female youth racer with a time of 40:16.
Anton Cecic excelled in all three disciplines, finishing first in each to claim the Paul Ervine Memorial Trophy as the top male youth racer with a time of 39:03.
Megan Cunningham proved too tough for the remainder of the female competitors and raced away with the Lorne Franks Memorial Trophy in a time of 1:15:43 to be the top local and overall female finisher.
The buzz of the weekend was Clay Ward, chiropractor and 2013 World Xterra Triathlon participant. Transitions are a race within the race of any triathlon and Clay shared his experiences and ideas on how not to lose valuable time in this area during the Race Expo.
At Sunday’s race, Clay blazed through the transitions and burned up the track, finishing the 5km sprint in 20:02. His efforts made him the fastest local male and the recipient of the Lorne Franks Memorial Trophy.
Even the weather could not dampen the spirits of the youngest competitors in the Teeny and Inbetweeny categories. Participants from five to nine years old are given a taste of competing in all three disciplines, and big smiles crossed the finish line into the arms of proud parents.
The weekend began with a package pickup and Race Expo at Shoreline Orthodontics sponsored by the Comox Valley Triathlon Club and Tri BC. Gillian Clayton, Ironman Canada winner 2012, encouraged participants to step outside their comfort zone and always set goals to challenge themselves. She also discussed the importance nutrition plays in life and competition.
Sponsors Extreme Runners were on hand to aid athletes in their final race preparation, while Shoreline Orthodontics added a little fun with a fishing booth. The Comox Valley Road Runners had many eager new athletes keen to learn about upcoming events and no event would be complete without a great cup of java provided by White Caps Cappuccino.
The Tri-K not only draws participation from top triathletes it is also an event where newcomers to the sport can “Just Tri It.” These athletes are the most inspirational, tackling all three disciplines and pouring their heart and soul into a goal of finishing a challenging course.
“An event of this nature takes hundreds of volunteers to prepare, and ensure the safety of all participants. Thank you to each and every volunteer, because of you this event was possible!” an event spokesperson said.
FINISH LINES Organizers thanked Canadian Tire, Brian Mclean’s, Thrifty’s, HiTech and the Eagle 97.3 FM for their support …
– Shoreline Orthodontics Tri-K Triathlon