SaddleBrooke Triathletes conquer


Diane Wagner

On Saturday, March 24, 2018, five SaddleBrooke triathletes (Rodger Bivens, Len Kershaw, Dave Taylor, Brian Stokes and Diane Wagner), participated in the third annual Oro Valley Sprint Triathlon held at the Oro Valley pool.

Over 200 triathletes participated to make it their largest turnout to date. The race started with junior participants who did shorter distances, followed by full sprint racers and those choosing to do only the run, bike, run, duathlon event.

The racers who did the full sprint began with an 800-yard serpentine pool swim, 14-mile bike, finishing with a three-mile run. Swimmers started in the first lane every 15 seconds and had to go 50 yards before coming back in the same lane on the other side covering eight lanes in total. Each swimmer was started based on their estimated total seed time which in some cases caused faster swimmers to crash into the swimmer in front of them while they tried to vigorously pass. Oh well, all part of racing strategy. Once out of the pool a quick run over to the bike transition area where we quickly put on our bike shoes, helmet and onto the bike down Calle Concordia Road heading west to La Canada. A steep downhill helped us climb up the hilly portion of LaCanada before turning onto Lambert Road which gave a slight chance to pick up some speed again. But then turning onto Oracle Road we hit a headwind with everyone now grinding away now heading south to get back to the pool only to begin a second bike loop. Happily off the bike, the three-mile run was mostly on a paved out and back course surface.

Race announcer voice now getting closer, the finish line was finally in sight!

Race ribbons were placed around our necks at the course end followed by fruit, chocolate milk, water and other treats.

As the race director called out each age group category to present the awards, we were all very pleased to place in our respective age groups either first, second or third and awarded beautiful white cotton towels embroidered with the race name and date.

A special thanks goes to Julie Stark, Race Director of this fast growing, fun event.