Fort Lewis College’s annual triathlon will be celebrating its 25th anniversary on Sun., April 14th.
The 10 a.m. race involves a 500-meter swim in the campus pool, a 15-mile bike ride on pavement, and a 5K run that uses the Rim Trail.
“It isn’t a mini-triathlon - it is a sprint triathlon,” said Gerry Geraghty, who sprinted his way into 1st place last year with a time of 1:01.
The traditional course will remain unchanged this year, and special memorabilia will be distributed to celebrate the 25th anniversary, said Dorlan Owen, the event coordinator.
Registration costs is $37 for students, faculty, and staff, $42 for other individuals, and $85 for teams.
In the team format, groups of two or three athletes break up the segments of the race.
“The team format is great, since somebody might be a terrible swimmer but has a friend who swims well,” Geraghty said. “It lets people race that wouldn’t compete otherwise.”
Teams have occasionally won the race, but usually an individual racer wins, he said.
Most competitors are students and members of the local community, though certain international triathletes have competed in the event, Geraghty said.
Molly Hummel, a Durango-based professional triathlete has won the event four times and will be competing again this year, Owen said.
The event is more of a fun, local race than a destination race, but it is quite competitive at the higher levels, said Mike Ellis, a participant of the triathlon.
Tri the Rim is better for spectating than a standard running race, since the athletes can be viewed swimming in the pool, during each of their three bike laps, and as they finish the run, Geraghty said.
The best areas for viewing the bike and run segments are the entrance to the Education and Business Hall parking lot, since both courses cross this point, Owen said.
The center of campus also works well for spectating, since it is close to a transition area and the finish line, she said.
Registration for the event is capped at 168 athletes, and will close on April 10, according to the Tri the Rim webpage. As of late March there were still about 25 slots available, which are expected to fill before the race, Owen said.
48 volunteers are currently signed up to work the event, and there is still more work available for people to count laps during the swimming segment, direct traffic on the bike course, and work the first aid station, said Edgar Anaya, the event’s volunteer coordinator. Those interested in working will find registration information on the website’s volunteer page.
On race day the 8th Avenue hill will be closed from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m., and Owen asks that residents slow down for the bikers and runners who will be around campus and the golf course during the race.
“It’s a great race and a great accomplishment for somebody to complete a swim-bike-run event,” Geraghty said.