Almost 5000 swimmers, cyclists, runners and triathletes will take part in the annual Husky Triathlon festival this weekend, February 17-19. This year is the 12th time the triathlon has taken place with record numbers already registered.
“The entire weekend is about being inclusive,” said Sebastian Gallery of Elite Energy Events, the Nowra-based company running the festival.
“We have an event for all ages and abilities from two-year-old Chella Shields who is taking part in the 2km fun run to 71-year-old Robert Hekking who is participating in the Long Course Triathlon on the Sunday (an arduous 2km ocean swim followed by an 83km bike ride and a 20km run just for good measure).”
Also known as Big Husky, the triathlon festival is the second largest of its kind in the southern hemisphere, attracting some of the world’s fastest athletes to the main event - the Ultimate Husky Long Course. Last year it was three-time Ironman World Champion Craig “Crowie” Alexander who took the line honours in the men’s race and it is already confirmed that he will be back in 2017 to defend his Husky title.
Not to be overshadowed by the Pros is crowd favourite, the Miniman triathlon for kids aged 7-11. This fantastic grass roots event will see the young ones give their all as they swim 50m, ride 2km and run 500m for the 7-9-year-olds; or swim 150m, ride 6km and run 1km for the 10-11-year-olds.
“It is fantastic to see kids taking part in our amazing sport, what’s more they don’t need to have all the gear they can swim in their boardies, ride their BMX and run in their sneakers,” CEO of Elite Energy Mark Emerton said.
“There’s something very heart-warming about watching kids cross that finish line with a big smile on their face. We give every kid a finisher medal and a T-shirt that they wear proudly with a great sense of achievement.”
The weekend kicks off on Friday at 5.30pm with a 1km ocean swim at Huskisson Beach. The Saturday hosts the shorter distance triathlons including the Enticer (200m swim/8km bike/2km run), the Sprint (750m swim/20km bike/5km run), the Miniman triathlon for kids and the 2k, 5k and 10k fun runs.
On Sunday it’s one of Australia’s iconic triathlon races with the Ultimate Husky Long Course - an event that sees competitors swim 2km at Huskisson Beach, followed by a three-lap 83km bike ride along Woollamia and Jervis Bay roads, followed by a 20km two-lap run along the spectacular Vincentia coastal path. Entries for all the races including the mini-man and the 2km, 5km, and 10km are available on race day. Road closure info can be found at www.eliteenergy.com.au.