Swimmers, bikers, and runners alike raced the Naperville Sprint Triathlon this morning at Centennial Park.
Celebrating the 10th anniversary of the triathlon in Naperville, over 1,900 took to the course, which had a 400-meter swim, 22K bike route, and a 5K run.
“For the last ten years it’s been the Naperville Sprint and it’s a milestone,” said Director of the Naperville Sprint Triathlon, Bill Burke. “A lot of athletes have done this for all ten years. And so we’ll be back next year in the first weekend of August and try to knock out another ten years.”
There were alternate triathlon courses – the Aquabike and Aquathon. And new to this year was the Kids Triathlon course for seven to 15 year olds. But some kids challenged themselves to race in the main triathlon instead.
“I’d say the running was the hardest because it was at the end and you were all tired and you had to keep going right at the very end,” said Patrick, 14, who raced in the Naperville Sprint Triathlon and won first in his age division.
“I only did the swimming but I can’t really imagine doing all three. I think the run would be really hard for me too,” said Nora, 13, Patrick’s sister.
Some racers made it a family affair to compete together.
“I’ve done a few of these and this one has been the most proudest one because I got to do this with my two sons, who have always encouraged me, and we encourage each other, to stay fit. We all did very good,” said Jack Zeleznak, who visited from California for the race.
And some raced to place, like Mari Rodriguez who came in second in her age division.
“I’ve been doing triathlons for about two years and this was the first one I ever did so it’s kind of like an annual thing for me,” said Rodriguez. “It’s very well organized and I really like doing it.”
The Naperville Sprint was the final of three triathlons this year put on by Experience Triathlon. 51 racers competed in all three and received special medals.
“So thank you Naperville and all the Naperville community for supporting this lifestyle of being healthy and active,” said CEO of Experience Triathlon, Joe Lopresto. “It’s great for athletes of all ages and abilities. So please come out and join us next year.”
The first place winner of the women’s overall was Keara Ginell of Naperville and overall for men’s was Robert Duncan of Braidwood.
A triathlon athletes can take a splash… ride… or sprint for another ten years.
Naperville News 17’s Christine Lena reports.