Dreaming of training like an Olympian?

Well, here’s your chance! Live and train like an Olympian at the upcoming USA Triathlon Foundation Fantasy Camp with Project Podium at the Utah Olympic Park in Park City, Utah. 

This training camp is geared towards athletes of all abilities. Experience an action-packed 4 day camp, where you will train alongside of Project Podium, our USA Triathlon men’s elite development program. Project Podium is home to a select group of young male triathletes from the U.S., who all show potenial to achieve medal performances in the 2024 and the 2028 Olympics.

As a training camp participant, you’ll get to stay in the brand new olympic athlete residences and have high performance coaching and training from camp coaches to include head coach of USA Triathlon Project Podium Parker Spencer, and professional triathletes and Olympians Andy Potts and Joe Maloy.

Here are some details:

Location: Utah Olympic Park, Park City, Utah
Dates: July 8th- July 11th, 2021
Registration closes July 1st and spaces are limited.

For more information and to register, click HERE.

Applications for Bridget Inspires Grants now open – deadline June 15th

From USA Triathlon

USA TRIATHLON FOUNDATION OPENS APPLICATIONS FOR BRIDGET INSPIRES GRANT

Bridget Inspires Grant Now Open for Applications — Deadline of June 15

The USA Triathlon Foundation is partnering once again with the Dawson family to offer the Bridget Inspires Grant in memory of Bridget Dawson. Bridget was an accomplished age-group athlete and member of Team USA who passed away in 2016. The Bridget Inspires Grant will provide funding to young women pursuing competitive success in triathlon and other multisport endeavors during the 2021 competition year and beyond.  

The application window is open as of Tuesday, June 1, and the deadline to apply is Tuesday, June 15, at 11:59 p.m. MT. 

Female multisport athletes age 25 or younger, or multisport organizations that support female athletes age 25 or younger, are encouraged to apply. For individuals, grant funds must be used to offset costs associated with participating in triathlon — such as equipment, travel, race registration fees and coaching. For organizations, funds must be used in programmatic support for young female athletes. Special consideration is given to athletes and organizations located in the USA Triathlon Western Region and Bridget’s home state of Iowa.

“Bridget was a world-class triathlete, admired by many in the community, and a huge influencer in the growing sport,” said Whitney Dawson, Bridget’s daughter. “The word ‘inspiring’ has been most commonly used by those describing Bridget since her passing, and the goal of this endowment is to extend her inspiration beyond her achievements and coaching. Bridget raced with grace, confidence, strength and a quiet fierceness that made her a champion in the sport, as well as a mentor and friend to the entire community. Her drive and vitality will live through the young women who will be supported from this fund to pursue their athletic goals.” 

The application form, which includes more information about eligibility and timeline, can be found here. The USA Triathlon Foundation will announce all grant recipients by Tuesday, June 29. 

About the USA Triathlon Foundation 

The USA Triathlon Foundation was created in 2014 by the USA Triathlon Board of Directors as an independent tax-exempt 501(c)(3) entity. Under the leadership of its Trustees and Committee members, the Foundation serves as a means to create a healthier America through triathlon and seeks to transform lives by opening up new pathways to the sport for all, especially those who are otherwise underserved. The USA Triathlon Foundation operates with the belief that every child should have the chance to participate, every paratriathlete should have the opportunity to compete, and every aspiring elite athlete should be able to chase his or her Olympic dream. Since the Foundation’s inception, more than $1.9 million has been provided to worthy causes and organizations that support its mission. Donations to the USA Triathlon Foundation ensure America’s youth are introduced to the benefits and fun of a multisport lifestyle, athletes with disabilities receive the training, support and gear to be able to participate and excel, and the best aspiring young athletes have a chance to pursue their Olympic Dreams. Visit usatriathlonfoundation.org to learn more and donate today.

USA Duathlon Virtual Run-Bike-Run, presented by RaceX, to benefit USA Triathlon Foundation’s General Fund

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — USA Triathlon today announced the opening of registration for the second annual USA Duathlon Virtual Run-Bike-Run presented by RaceX, a virtual multisport challenge set for April 15-May 3. 

The event is free to enter. Participants have the option to make a $35 donation to the USA Triathlon Foundation and receive a finisher’s medal, or a $55 donation to receive a finishers’ medal and a USA Triathlon-branded premium wall-mounted medal hanger. All donations will go to the USA Triathlon Foundation’s general fund to help open pathways for all to swim, bike and run.

The 19-day challenge offers beginner and experienced athletes alike the opportunity to test themselves at the start of the racing season — whether they plan to return to in-person racing in 2021 or tackle their first-ever multisport event. Athletes can complete the challenge on their own time and at their own pace, from anywhere in the world. Registration is open now, and athletes can sign up at any point until the conclusion of the challenge on May 3. Click here to register.

The Virtual Run-Bike-Run is a cumulative challenge, and participants can track their progress on the FitRankings platform using run and bike leaderboards sortable by total mileage, time and elevation gain. Athletes will receive messages from USA Triathlon and FitRankings as they hit overall running and cycling milestones toward traditional duathlon distances: sprint (7.5-kilometer run and 20-kilometer bike) and standard (15k run, 40k bike). 

The virtual event also serves as a precursor to the USA Triathlon Duathlon National Championships, a weekend of in-person racing set for May 22-23 in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. As athletes complete the cumulative distances in the Virtual Run-Bike-Run, their progress will be displayed on a map of the Duathlon Nationals standard-distance race course in Tuscaloosa. For more information about Duathlon Nationals, which does not require qualification and which will adhere to USA Triathlon’s Safe Return to Multisport guidelines, click here.

“While multisport athletes across the U.S. will be able to race in-person this year, 2020 revealed the importance of virtual racing in helping attract new athletes to our sport,” said Rocky Harris, USA Triathlon CEO. “The USA Duathlon Virtual Run-Bike-Run presented by RaceX enables athletes to test their racing legs on their own time, from their own backyards, as they gear up for a busy season. We also invite beginners who may have newly discovered or rediscovered the joys of running and cycling in 2020 to dip their toes into multisport racing for the first time with this virtual challenge.”

“The USA Triathlon Foundation spent much of 2020 focused on supporting members of the multisport community who were acutely impacted by COVID-19,” said David Deschenes, USA Triathlon Foundation Executive Director. “As we look ahead to a brighter future, we are proud to be able to continue that community support while focusing on broader programs and initiatives that advance our mission of opening pathways for all to swim, bike and run. We are grateful to those who choose to give back to the sport with a donation to the USA Triathlon Foundation as part of their participation in the USA Duathlon Virtual Run-Bike-Run.” 

Athletes can complete the entire challenge on one day or work toward their cumulative distance goal over multiple days or weeks. Workouts may be uploaded to the Virtual Run-Bike-Run platform, powered by FitRankings, at any time throughout the challenge. Run and bike activities can be synced to the platform automatically via most GPS-enabled fitness devices, smartphone apps and smartwatches — including Wahoo, Garmin, Apple Watch, Fitbit, Misfit, Polar, Suunto, Google Fit, RunKeeper, Apple Health and MapMyFitness. Manual uploads are also available. 

Workouts may be completed outdoors or indoors, while observing all local social distancing and safety guidelines: spin bikes and stationary bikes, bike trainers and treadmills are all acceptable.

The Virtual Run-Bike-Run is presented by RaceX, USA Triathlon’s Official Predictive Analytics Technology Partner. One participant will be selected at random to win a one-year subscription to RaceX PERFORMANCE valued at $228, which provides fully optimized race pacing plans, predictions, what-if analysis, and race-rehearsal tools powered by predictive analytics and AI, as well as athletes’ own genetics and training data. 

TrueForm, a global leader in non-motorized treadmill development and running education, is a supporting partner of the Virtual Run-Bike-Run. The first 100 people to register for the event and select the $55 USA Triathlon Foundation premium finisher’s package will receive a $100 gift card, redeemable at trueformrunner.comCompeed, USA Triathlon’s Exclusive Blister Care Partner, is a contributing partner of the event.

Athletes are encouraged to share their progress with members of the nationwide multisport community as they complete the Virtual Run-Bike-Run, using the hashtag #VirtualRBR on social media. 

To learn more and register today for the USA Duathlon Virtual Run-Bike-Run presented by RaceX, click here.

About USA Triathlon
USA Triathlon is proud to serve as the National Governing Body for triathlon, as well as duathlon, aquathlon, aquabike, winter triathlon, off-road triathlon and paratriathlon in the United States. Founded in 1982, USA Triathlon sanctions more than 4,000 events and connects with more than 400,000 members each year, making it the largest multisport organization in the world. In addition to its work at the grassroots level with athletes, coaches, and race directors — as well as the USA Triathlon Foundation — USA Triathlon provides leadership and support to elite athletes competing at international events, including International Triathlon Union (ITU) World Championships, Pan American Games and the Olympic and Paralympic Games. USA Triathlon is a proud member of the ITU and the United States Olympic & Paralympic Committee (USOPC).

USA Triathlon Foundation and Professional Triathletes Organisation team up to provide COVID-19 Relief Fund Grants

From USA Triathlon

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — The USA Triathlon Foundation, in partnership with the Professional Triathletes Organisation (PTO), is now accepting applications for its second round of COVID-19 Relief Fund donations, with $55,000 in grant funding available. The relief fund provides financial support to members of the U.S. multisport community who have been adversely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Individuals and organizations may apply for funding starting today, through Monday, March 15.

A portion of the funding was raised through the PTO 2020 Championship Sweepstakes at CHALLENGEDAYTONA, in which past and present professional triathletes from around the globe — including Jan Frodeno, Dave Scott, Daniela Ryf, Mark Allen and Lucy Charles — donated their time and merchandise in a global, 10-day-long prize draw. In addition, the PTO itself contributed to the relief fund by donating all proceeds from its pay-per-view livestream broadcast of the PTO 2020 Championship.

Complete eligibility information and application materials for the COVID-19 Relief Fund can be found at usatriathlonfoundation.org. All applications are reviewed by a seven-member independent grant committee that includes USA Triathlon Foundation Trustees; coaches; race directors; age group athletes; paratriathletes; pro triathletes; and PTO members Matt Hanson and Jackie Hering. 

“The COVID-19 pandemic has affected nearly every aspect of our lives,” Hanson said. “The multisport community has been a haven for many seeking new challenges, a social outlet, healthier lifestyles, and an all-around way of life — but the sport has definitely not been immune to the impacts of the pandemic. Many individuals lost their training outlets, and many businesses were put under extreme financial pressure. I applaud USA Triathlon, the PTO and CHALLENGEDAYTONA for working to help give back to the triathlon community, and I look forward to reviewing the applications for these funds.” 

The Foundation will make all selections, announce grant funding recipients and distribute funds by the week of March 29. Grant applications up to $5,000 will be considered. The Foundation may not be able to support every eligible request for funding. In its first round, the relief fund distributed more than $110,000 in grants to multisport organizations and individuals.  

“The USA Triathlon Foundation is grateful for the generosity of the Professional Triathletes Organisation and the individual athletes and donors who gave time and resources to support the COVID-19 Relief Fund,” said David Deschenes, USA Triathlon Foundation Executive Director. “We are proud of the impact the fund has made so far through grants at the grassroots level, and we look forward to providing additional relief as the multisport community continues to grapple with and rebound from COVID-19’s effects.”

“2020 was an incredibly challenging year on many fronts,” said Charles Adamo, Executive Chairman of PTO. “The PTO and its member PTO Professionals were grateful to have the opportunity to harness the interest in Professional Triathlon as a chance to ‘play it forward’ with this fundraising initiative to support those in the sport most in need. We are grateful of the partnership with USA Triathlon and the USA Triathlon Foundation and their fantastic efforts to keep the sport going during these difficult times.”

The Foundation welcomes applications from USA Triathlon-certified race directors and race management organizations; USA Triathlon-certified coaches and clubs; and other individuals and organizations who have been impacted by the pandemic.

Funds may be used to support programs and events that have been rescheduled or postponed due to COVID-19, or to create new programs and events that will encourage participation in multisport activities. All requests must help advance the mission of the USA Triathlon Foundation, which is to transform lives through sport by providing opportunities to swim, bike and run for all.

Donations in support of the USA Triathlon Foundation COVID-19 Relief Fund are being accepted on a continual basis. Visit usatriathlonfoundation.org to donate today, or to learn more about the USA Triathlon Foundation and the programs it supports.

About the USA Triathlon Foundation
The USA Triathlon Foundation was created in 2014 by the USA Triathlon Board of Directors as an independent tax-exempt 501(c)(3) entity. Under the leadership of its Trustees and Committee members, the Foundation serves as a means to create a healthier America through triathlon and seeks to transform lives by opening up new pathways to the sport for all, especially those who are otherwise underserved. The USA Triathlon Foundation operates with the belief that every child should have the chance to participate, every paratriathlete should have the opportunity to compete, and every aspiring elite athlete should be able to chase his or her Olympic dream. Since the Foundation’s inception, more than $1.9 million has been provided to worthy causes and organizations that support its mission. Donations to the USA Triathlon Foundation ensure America’s youth are introduced to the benefits and fun of a multisport lifestyle, athletes with disabilities receive the training, support and gear to be able to participate and excel, and the best aspiring young athletes have a chance to pursue their Olympic Dreams. Visit usatriathlonfoundation.org to learn more and donate today.

About USA Triathlon
USA Triathlon is proud to serve as the National Governing Body for triathlon, as well as duathlon, aquathlon, aquabike, winter triathlon, off-road triathlon and paratriathlon in the United States. Founded in 1982, USA Triathlon sanctions more than 4,300 events and connects with more than 400,000 members each year, making it the largest multisport organization in the world. In addition to its work at the grassroots level with athletes, coaches, and race directors — as well as the USA Triathlon Foundation — USA Triathlon provides leadership and support to elite athletes competing at international events, including World Triathlon Championships, Pan American Games and the Olympic and Paralympic Games. USA Triathlon is a proud member of World Triathlon and the United States Olympic & Paralympic Committee (USOPC).

About the Professional Triathletes Organisation

The Professional Triathletes Organisation is a not-for-profit entity representing the body of professional triathletes and seeks to showcase the passion, talents, determination, struggles and achievements of the dedicated professionals who strive to realize the highest levels of the sport and inspire all those who are a part of the triathlon community.

Endurance Exchange Silent Auction benefitting the USA Triathlon Foundation

Join us in supporting the USA Triathlon Foundation 

Unique Experiences. Olympic Memorabilia. One-of-Kind Items. Travel.

Looking to support a great cause? Check out the Endurance Exchange Silent Auction benefitting the USA Triathlon Foundation. Proceeds from the auction will support the Foundation’s mission to transform lives through sport for all, to include supporting our Olympic and Paralympic hopefuls and athletes competing at the 2021 Tokyo Olympics.

The auction will close at 12:00PM EST on Sunday, January 31st. Packages are available for all interests and budgets starting out at Cases of Vice Wine all the way up to VIP Spectator Package for the IRONMAN World Championships in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii.

Have questions about the auction items or want more information about the Foundation? Please contact Dave Deschenes at Dave.Deschenes@usatriathlonfoundation.org.

Help Support Triathlon Relief Fund, $5 Entries for Daily Prizes, “10 Days to Daytona”

Welcome to the PTO 2020 Championship “10 Days to Daytona” Charity Prize Draw.

The Professional Triathletes Organisation and our partners, CHALLENGEDAYTONA®, USA Triathlon and British Triathlon, have launched a Charity Prize Draw in support of the Triathlon Covid-19 Relief Fund.

Much of our sport has been decimated by the impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic – in working together we hope to provide some support to those in our triathlon community most in need. Alongside our fundraising partners, triathlon legends past and present have united to create a prize draw with once-in-a-lifetime experiences – all donated to Support the Sport.

Every day for 10 days leading up to the PTO 2020 Championship on Dec 6th, five unique prizes will be up for grabs with the five lucky winners of each day’s prize draw selected at random at the end of each day. That’s 50 amazing prizes in total!

Priced at $5 per entry with no limit on the number of entries, all proceeds will go into the Triathlon Covid-19 Relief Fund and be used to support triathlon-related causes around the world. Administered by our partners, the USA Triathlon Foundation, US based donations will support US causes, European funds will support Europeans and other International groups to their specific region of the world. Triathlon is a truly global sport, and this is an opportunity for us all to unite together for a common cause.

To enter Raffle go here: https://championship.protriathletes.org/charity-draw/#donate-to-win

Help Support Team USA Athletes via the Giving Games

The postponement of the Tokyo Olympic Games has impacted many American triathletes and paratriathletes. USA Triathon has teamed up with several U.S. Olympic and Paralympic National Governing Bodies (NGBs) to launch the Giving Games, an effort to support and sustain U.S. sport organizations and their athletes on their journey to the postponed Tokyo Olympic and Paralymic Games in 2021.

Between July 24th and August 9th (the original dates of the Tokyo 2020 Games), the USA Triathlon Foundation is conducting a direct fundraising campaign, asking for your support to fund our athletes and their mission to transform lives though sport by providing resources to swim, bike, and run for all.

“The COVID-19 pandemic forced the elite domestic and International Triathlon Union (ITU) racing seasons to be put on pause, removing many U.S. triathletes’ sole source of income via prize money and sponsor incentives,” said David Deschenes, USA Triathlon Foundation Executive Director. “The postponement of the Tokyo Games adds another year of costs for athletes including travel, coaching expenses, training facilities and equipment. USA Triathlon is proud to take part in Giving Games, providing a unique opportunity for Olympic and Paralympic fans across the country to give back to the athletes who will inspire them next year in Tokyo.”


Unlike most Olympic and Paralympic sports around the world that receive government funding, U.S. athletes rely heavily on their community for philanthropic and sponsor support. Adding to the physical and emotional toll that a delay in competition places on their shoulders, their revenue streams and future racing plans are now under threat.

“With the majority of competitions canceled or postponed, it’s challenging as a professional athlete — who relies on prize money as a source of income — to maintain financial stability and offset personal cost,” said Renée Tomlin, U.S. National Team member and Tokyo Olympic hopeful in triathlon. “It’s a privilege to compete for Team USA, and that is never taken for granted; however, financial sustainability is pertinent in the pursuit of excellence at this level. The Giving Games offers a unique, interactive platform for those with the means to share and support Olympic and Paralympic athletes affected in these difficult times.”

“America’s athletes need our support to compete in 2021,” said Max Cobb, Chair of the National Governing Bodies Council. “At a time when America feels extraordinarily divided, this is an opportunity to come together in our common love of country and sport for the pursuit of success on the world stage, raising funds to directly support our athletes and our sports that sustain them, and their dreams, during this critical next year.”

All funds raised will either be a direct donation to a specific sport or provide general support for all sports, which will be equally divided among the participating sports organizations.

Fans and donors who wish to support USA Triathlon and its athletes directly can make a gift at this link. All proceeds will support U.S. Olympic and Paralympic triathlon hopefuls by funding high-performance initiatives and grant programs.

Olympic and Paralympic fans may also contribute to Giving Games in the following ways:

  • Take the Giving Games quiz to find the sport that best matches you, and make a donation to that organization
  • Enter to win one of 10 sweepstakes packages from Omaze
  • Help set the World Record for most donations made in 24 hours
  • Compete in the Medal of Giving by donating directly to a sport. At the conclusion of Giving Games, each sport will award a Gold, Silver and Bronze medal to the top three donors.

Giving Games will actively raise funds for athletes and their sports organizations during the original window of the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020: July 24-Aug. 9.

Though recognized and supported by the U.S. Olympic & Paralympic Committee, the National Governing Bodies are separate organizations. The Giving Games initiative is not associated with or endorsed by the USOPC or U.S. Olympic & Paralympic Foundation (USOPF), and funds raised through the Giving Games initiative are used to directly aid the National Governing Bodies and the athletes they support.



About Giving Games
Giving Games, taking place July 24 – August 9, 2020, is a fundraising initiative that brings U.S. sports organizations together and implores Americans to help sustain our athletes’ journeys. The initiative was started to help fill the gap of time that currently sits empty due to the postponement of the Tokyo Games. All funds raised will either be a direct donation to a specific sport or general support of all of the sports which will be equally divided among the participating sports organizations. Comprising multiple fundraising activations, Giving Games works to sustain our athletes and sports during an unprecedented time of need. For more, visit givinggames2020.com.

About the USA Triathlon Foundation
The USA Triathlon Foundation was created in 2014 by the USA Triathlon Board of Directors as an independent tax-exempt 501(c)(3) entity. Under the leadership of its Trustees and Committee members, the Foundation serves as a means to create a healthier America through triathlon and seeks to transform lives by opening up new pathways to the sport for all, especially those who are otherwise underserved. The USA Triathlon Foundation operates with the belief that every child should have the chance to participate, every paratriathlete should have the opportunity to compete, and every aspiring elite athlete should be able to chase his or her Olympic dream. Since the Foundation’s inception, more than $1.9 million has been provided to worthy causes and organizations that support its mission. Donations to the USA Triathlon Foundation ensure America’s youth are introduced to the benefits and fun of a multisport lifestyle, athletes with disabilities receive the training, support and gear to be able to participate and excel, and the best aspiring young athletes have a chance to pursue their Olympic Dreams. Visit usatriathlonfoundation.org to learn more and donate today.

About USA Triathlon
USA Triathlon is proud to serve as the National Governing Body for triathlon, as well as duathlon, aquathlon, aquabike, winter triathlon, off-road triathlon and paratriathlon in the United States. Founded in 1982, USA Triathlon sanctions more than 4,300 events and connects with more than 400,000 members each year, making it the largest multisport organization in the world. In addition to its work at the grassroots level with athletes, coaches, and race directors – as well as the USA Triathlon Foundation – USA Triathlon provides leadership and support to elite athletes competing at international events, including International Triathlon Union (ITU) World Championships, Pan American Games and the Olympic and Paralympic Games. USA Triathlon is a proud member of the ITU and the United States Olympic & Paralympic Committee (USOPC).

Media ContactsCaryn Maconi, Communications Manager
719-955-2828 | caryn.maconi@usatriathlon.orgChuck Menke, Chief Marketing Officer
719-955-2827 | chuck.menke@usatriathlon.org

USA Triathlon Operation CO>COVID-19 a Success!

By Khem Suthiwan

Their journey began the evening of Friday, June 19th at 6:30pm MT, at the Utah-Colorado border just west of Grand Junction. Their goal, to complete a 483-mile relay ride across the state of Colorado while raising money for the USA Triathlon Foundation COVID-19 Relief Fund and the Care and Share Food Bank of Southern Colorado.

Over the course of 483 miles, the riders averaged 20 mph, climbed nearly 23,000 feet of elevation with their highest point at Monarch Pass at 11,312 feet of elevation. Just before 8:00pm and beating the sunset, all nine riders joined together for the final mile to the Kansas-Colorado state line.

We were able to catch up to them within a few hours of the finish. All the athletes and crew were in great spirits, looking forward to seeing the state line.

At a rider exchange spot with about 20 miles to go, a deputy from the Sheriff of Cheyenne County pulled over with flashing lights. His first words were “You guys are obviously part of some sort of bike team.” The crew immediately jumped in to tell the deputy about the relay ride, and that if he wanted to talk to someone in charge, the CEO (Rocky Harris) is coming down the road about to finish his current leg of the relay. Many laughs were exchanged and his handcuffs made an appearance for fun. At the next rider exchange stop, the deputy offered up a donation to the crew. A great gesture to an already amazing day.

The participating riders included:

• Kyle Coon, Tokyo Paralympic Hopeful 
• Hailey Danz, Rio 2016 Paralympic Silver Medalist and Tokyo Paralympic Hopeful
• Kendall Gretsch, PyeongChang 2018 Paralympic Nordic Skiing Gold Medalist and Tokyo Paralympic Hopeful
• Kevin McDowell, Tokyo Olympic Hopeful
• Jack O’Neil, U.S. Paratriathlon Junior Development Team Member
• Melissa Stockwell, Rio 2016 Paralympic Bronze Medalist and Tokyo Paralympic Hopeful, Team Toyota Athlete
• Renée Tomlin, Tokyo Olympic Hopeful
• Alex Libin, Elite Triathlete and Guide for Kyle Coon 
• Rocky Harris, USA Triathlon Chief Executive Officer

The team had set a goal to raise $20,210 in reference to the postponed Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games, which will take place in 2021. At the time of their finish, $21,568 had been raised with donations still rolling in. Donations are still being accepted at usatriathlonfoundation.org.

Toyota U.S. Paratriathlon Resident Team to Ride Across Colorado to Benefit COVID-19 Relief, Care & Share Food Bank

COLORADO SPRINGS, COLORADO – MAY 27: Paralympian and former U.S. Army Officer Melissa Stockwell cycles during a training session on May 27, 2020 in Colorado Springs, Colorado. Athletes across the globe are now training in isolation under strict policies in place due to the Covid-19 pandemic. (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)

From USA Triathlon

Nine U.S. elite triathletes training for the postponed Tokyo Paralympic and Olympic Games, along with USA Triathlon CEO Rocky Harris, will cycle a combined 483 miles across the state of Colorado starting Friday, June 19, in a 24-hour relay challenge dubbed “Operation CO>COVID.” 

The ride, which is supported by Toyota vehicles, was fully planned and executed by members of the Toyota U.S. Paratriathlon Resident Team including Kyle Coon, Hailey Danz, Kendall Gretsch, Allysa Seely, Melissa Stockwell and Howie Sanborn (Sanborn will not participate in the ride due to injury). The squad normally trains out of the U.S. Olympic & Paralympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, but the training center’s athletic facilities have been closed since mid-March due to COVID-19. 

The event is designed to drive awareness and donations for the USA Triathlon Foundation, which will then distribute proceeds equally between two causes: the USA Triathlon Foundation COVID-19 Relief Fund, which provides grants to members of the multisport community impacted by the pandemic, and the Care and Share Food Bank for Southern Colorado. Donations are being accepted at usatriathlonfoundation.org. The team has set a goal to raise $20,210 in reference to the postponed Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games, which will take place in 2021.

In addition to the paratriathlon resident team and Harris, participants in the challenge also include U.S. Olympic hopefuls Kevin McDowell and Renée Tomlin; up-and-coming 17-year-old paratriathlete Jack O’Neil; and elite triathlete Alex Libin. Libin will serve as a sighted guide for Kyle Coon, who is visually impaired.

“The Tokyo postponement left us all wanting to do something to both test ourselves physically and to give back to the community,” said Stockwell, a U.S. Army veteran and Team Toyota athlete who won a bronze medal in paratriathlon’s debut at the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games. “The idea to ride our bikes 483 miles across the state of Colorado accomplished both. Instead of racing in Tokyo, we will be racing the sun to finish our ride before sundown and raising money to give back to the community for COVID-19 relief. We look forward to completing these miles as a team and making a small difference.”

“Our paratriathlon resident team came up with Operation CO>COVID as a unique challenge for themselves, but more importantly, because they wanted to give back to our community during this unprecedented time,” Harris, CEO of USA Triathlon, said. “I am incredibly proud to ride alongside this group of individuals who, even when faced with the disappointment and uncertainty of an Olympic and Paralympic Games postponement, are still motivated to support others whose livelihoods have been threatened due to COVID-19.”

“It’s incredible to see the Toyota U.S. Paratriathlon Resident Team come together for such a great cause,” said Dedra DeLilli, group manager, Toyota Olympic and Paralympic Marketing. “We’re inspired by the athletes’ motivation to go above and beyond to create a positive impact for both the multisport community and the local community where they train. We can’t wait to follow the team’s ride, and our Toyota employees all over the country will be cheering them on.”

The ride will cover 483 miles in total distance, gaining nearly 23,000 feet of elevation as it extends from the Utah-Colorado state line in Montrose, Colorado, to the Colorado-Kansas state line at U.S. 40 and CR 57 (near the town of Arapahoe, Colorado). The route travels from the Western Slope up into the Rocky Mountains, cresting Monarch Pass at 11,312 feet of elevation before descending into the Front Range via Colorado Springs and into the Eastern Plains. To view the complete route, click here.

Athletes will be divided into three teams of three, with each person covering up to four different segments ranging from 3-15 miles at a time. The first riders will begin cycling from the Utah-Colorado state line in the evening (exact time TBD) on Friday, June 19, with a goal to be at the Colorado-Kansas state line 24 hours later on Saturday, June 20. 

Toyota support vehicles will transport the rest of the athletes and their gear along the route, stopping to swap riders after each segment. The athletes must collectively maintain an average of 21 miles per hour in order to successfully cross the state within 24 hours. 

The participating athletes include:

  • Kyle Coon, Tokyo Paralympic Hopeful 
  • Hailey Danz, Rio 2016 Paralympic Silver Medalist and Tokyo Paralympic Hopeful
  • Kendall Gretsch, PyeongChang 2018 Paralympic Gold Medalist and Tokyo Paralympic Hopeful
  • Kevin McDowell, Tokyo Olympic Hopeful
  • Jack O’Neil, U.S. Paratriathlon Junior Development Team Member
  • Allysa Seely, Rio 2016 Paralympic Gold Medalist and Tokyo Paralympic Hopeful 
  • Melissa Stockwell, Rio 2016 Paralympic Bronze Medalist and Tokyo Paralympic Hopeful, Team Toyota Athlete
  • Renée Tomlin, Tokyo Olympic Hopeful
  • Alex Libin, Elite Triathlete and Guide for Kyle Coon 
  • Rocky Harris, USA Triathlon Chief Executive Officer

FOR MEDIA: 

  • All riders are available for interviews leading up to the event date, and photos and video b-roll of athletes are available upon request.
  • Interviews, video and photo opportunities are possible during the ride itself but must be requested and coordinated in advance, as the relay is continuous and transport vans will be in motion throughout the day.
  • For all in-person coverage, members of the media must wear masks and maintain six feet of distance from athletes and support staff.
  • To request interviews or media materials, please contact Caryn Maconi, USA Triathlon Communications Manager, at caryn.maconi@usatriathlon.org or 443-534-5954.

To learn more about Operation CO>COVID, or to make a donation to the USA Triathlon Foundation, visit usatriathlonfoundation.org.


About the USA Triathlon Foundation
The USA Triathlon Foundation was created in 2014 by the USA Triathlon Board of Directors as an independent tax-exempt 501(c)(3) entity. Under the leadership of its Trustees and Committee members, the Foundation serves as a means to create a healthier America through triathlon and seeks to transform lives by opening up new pathways to the sport for all, especially those who are otherwise underserved. The USA Triathlon Foundation operates with the belief that every child should have the chance to participate, every paratriathlete should have the opportunity to compete, and every aspiring elite athlete should be able to chase his or her Olympic dream. Since the Foundation’s inception, more than $3 million has been provided to worthy causes and organizations that support its mission. Donations to the USA Triathlon Foundation ensure America’s youth are introduced to the benefits and fun of a multisport lifestyle, athletes with disabilities receive the training, support and gear to be able to participate and excel, and the best aspiring young athletes have a chance to pursue their Olympic Dreams. Visit usatriathlonfoundation.org to learn more and donate today.

About USA Triathlon
USA Triathlon is proud to serve as the National Governing Body for triathlon, as well as duathlon, aquathlon, aquabike, winter triathlon, off-road triathlon and paratriathlon in the United States. Founded in 1982, USA Triathlon sanctions more than 4,300 events and connects with more than 400,000 members each year, making it the largest multisport organization in the world. In addition to its work at the grassroots level with athletes, coaches, and race directors — as well as the USA Triathlon Foundation — USA Triathlon provides leadership and support to elite athletes competing at international events, including International Triathlon Union (ITU) World Championships, Pan American Games and the Olympic and Paralympic Games. USA Triathlon is a proud member of the ITU and the United States Olympic & Paralympic Committee (USOPC).
– usatriathlon.org –

Sip, Relax, and Enjoy! Free Virtual Wine Tasting with USA Triathlon!

In April, the USA Triathlon Foundation announced their partnership with The Vice Wines and their limited edition “Tri Blend” luxury wine, and we could not be more excited about it! To help get you as excited as we are, we are inviting you to a private virtual wine tasting with the founder and winemaker, Mr. Malek Amrani

On June 17 at 5p.m. (PT), join Mr. Amrani as he walks us through an experiential and educational evening about The Vice Wines and the Tri Blend. Learn about the inspiration behind the blend, the process of selecting each varietal and the best ways to enjoy and taste the wine. 

Also joining the wine tasting are special guests, Katie Zafares, 2019 ITU World Series Champion, 2016 Olympian and the inspiration behind the Tri Blend and Amy Dixon Paralympic National Team athlete, Tokyo Paralympic hopeful and sommelier. 

“The Tri” is a blend of 16% Petite Sirah, 54% Malbec and 30% Cabernet Franc. The inspiration behind the precise blending is the percentage of total race time spent on each distance – swim, bike, run – by Zaferes en route to her victory at the 2019 ITU World Triathlon Grand Final in Lausanne, but also racing in the age group world championship with his fellow Team USA members.

There is NO charge to register for the wine tasting. All that you will need is a bottle of the Tri Blend which can be purchased below. 

Interested in joining us for this special evening? Register NOW. 

To be able to participate in the Virtaul Wine Tasting you will need a bottle of the Tri Blend.

As a USA Triathlon Member you receive 25% off your purchase while using code: USAT25

All proceeds of the Tri Blend are donated back to the USA Triathlon Foundation.