Race volunteers prepare competitors in the tyke division for their swimming heats at the start of the 19th annual Qualicum Beach Triathlon June 26.

Multi-discipline athletes tri, tri again

Large youth turnout spices 19th annual Qualicum Beach Triathlon

Sunny skies and warm temperatures helped draw a huge crowd of participants and spectators to the 19th annual Qualicum Beach Triathlon.

Overall winner Michael Didham posted a blazing time of 56 minutes, 47 seconds for the 400-metre swim, 18-km bike ride and 5-km run during the June 26 triathlon. The first female finisher was Stacey Neilson, with a time of 1:05:25 over the same course. Veteran triathlete Rob Williamson was the first local finisher with a time of 59:45 and was third overall in the race standings.

Participation in the minor (ages 8-11) and youth (ages 12-17) categories was high. Well over 250 children/youth completed the course either as individuals or part of teams of three — each completing one of the events.  Approximately seventy tiny-tris, ages 4-7, completed a mini tri course with loud cheers from the large crowd of spectators, making for a festive and supportive event.

The success of this annual event is dependent upon the large number of volunteers who act as timers, race marshals and transition co-ordinators. A big thank you goes to all the volunteers from the race committee, and the race executive is indebted to its two main sponsors — Qualicum Foods and The Town of Qualicum Beach  — along with many other local businesses who provide financial support by race prizes.

Complete race standings for all age groups can be found on the triathlon website: www.qualicumbeachtriathlon.com.

— Submitted by Jim Powell

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