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Donner Triathlon Sunday

Lara Mullin, Sierra Sun

Sunday marks the 20th Anniversary of one of the most heralded races in the country: the Donner Lake Triathlon.

What began as a small triathlon tucked away in scenic Truckee has been transformed over the years into a multi-event challenge that drew over 1,300 athletes last year.

“This year we raised the number of athletes that could register for each race and we are still going to sell out before race day. Over 1,100 athletes have already signed up for the triathlons alone, and that is how many total people we had in 2000,” said Jeannine Henderson, marketing director for the event.

Athletes can enter the International Triathlon which includes a 1.5K swim, 40K run and 10K run, or a shorter version of the International in the Sprint category. The Sprint Triathlon challenges participants with 400-yard swim, six-mile bike and two-mile run. For those racers who wish to skip the swim and bike sections of the Triathlon, a 10K and 5K run will also be available.

The festivities begin on Saturday, July 14 at West End Beach of Donner Lake with a participant packet pick-up, vendor expo, pre-race meetings and course instruction that begins at noon. On race day, triathletes and runners will arrive early to secure their space in the transition area for a 7:30 a.m. International start and 7:45 a.m. Sprint start.

Runners in the 10K run/walk and 5K relay will cross the starting line at 8:30 a.m.

Athletes will travel from all over California, Nevada and the U.S. to compete in the Donner Lake setting with some of the best athletes in the West.

“The majority of participants come from the Bay Area and San Jose, while only about 30 percent come from Truckee, Tahoe or Reno. That tells you how well known this event has become,” Henderson said.

Of those pre-registered for the Triathlons, 63 percent are males and 37 percent are females in the International, while the women athletes outnumber the men in the Sprint event with a 55/45 split.

Volunteers are still needed to assist with many race tasks including swim course safety kayaks, water stations, course monitoring, registration and finish line timing. Anyone interested in volunteering can contact Jeannine Henderson at (530) 757-2012. Online registration is still available for every event at http://www.changeofpace.com.


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