By ROGER AMSDEN, LACONIA DAILY SUN
LACONIA — The City on the Lakes Tri Festival drew 106 competitors Sunday, even though it was shortened to a one-day sprint-only event, and was deemed a success by organizer Jan Buitendag.
Buitendag, chief executive officer of Tritanium Sports of Gilford, said he was pleased by the turnout and is looking forward to bringing it back next year as a two-day event which will feature a sprint event on Saturday and 70.3-mile Half Ironman format on Sunday.
The Half Iron Man part of the event, a 1.2-mile swim, 56-mile bike ride and a 13.1-mile run, had originally been scheduled for Sunday but was postponed until 2018.
“We lost two or three months this year while trying to find a venue, which cost us many competitors who might otherwise have shown up “ he said.
Buitendag said the local event is designed to fill the void left when organizers of the Timberman Triathlon, traditionally held in Ellacoya Park in Gilford, moved that event to Old Orchard Beach, Maine.
He said local authorities were very helpful in support for the event, which was approved in March by the Laconia City Council, and said hat he was grateful for all the volunteers who showed up for Sunday's event, many of whom are involved with the Lakes Region Triathlon Club.
Janet Brough, volunteer coordinator for the event, also thanked the Laconia Parks and Recreation Department and the Meredith and Laconia police departments and the Laconia Fire Department for helping make it a safe event.
Sunday's sprint event featured a 350-yard swim, 17-mile bike ride and 5-kilometer run and saw some good performances by local athletes.
Doug Levens, 47, of Cheshire, Connecticut, who posted the day's best times in both the swimming and running events, was first with a time of 1 hour, 18 minutes and 39.5 seconds. He was followed by Brad Mitchell, 41, of Concord, Thomas Motta, 29, of Manchester and Anthony Scigliano, 15, of Mansfield, Connecticut.
Doug McLelland, 51, of Belmont was sixth and Andrew Grieainger, 62 of Meredith, was seventh,
Top woman finisher was Nora Jones, 30, of Dover, followed by Morgan Ainsworth, 18, of Gilford. Kimberly Ainsworth, 47, of Gilford, was fourth.
- Written by Roger Amsden
- Category: Local News
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