RAINY DAY IN BOSTON

SLOWTWITCH

Billed as 'Boston's one and only triathlon' this event is the gold standard model of driving new participation to the sport. Let's take a look to see why participation continues to surge in 'America's Best Sports Town'.

Becky Page is an experienced and seasoned triathlete who races for the popular New England club, Team Psycho. Her training partner is 3x World Champion and Hall-of-Famer Karen Smyers who served as one of the event's emcees.

We're including this particular photo because it shows Becky running. Race Director Michael O'Neil studies all aspects of the industry and is keenly aware that nearly 65% of triathletes come from a running background. You can find O'Neil marketing Boston Tri at running races, creating new triathletes.

Kim Webster was at the pointy end of the field in the women's elite division. While female participation is hovering at 37% in USA Triathlon races, Boston is closer to 50% of the field. O'Neil deliberately positions Boston Tri as an inviting race to women. What does that mean? The race hosts social runs at health clubs, local bike and run shops and urges group training.

Boston puts up a prize purse for pros. Not enough to draw in the biggest names in non-draft racing - though Olympian Ben Kanute was in the field - but all of the top talent in New England toe the line. With potentially hazardous conditions forcing a swim cancellation this year, the race started with a short but challenging run on the beach.

Kanute rode the 40k course on his Trek Madone having competed at the draft-legal MLT Mixed Team Relay in Atlantic City the previous day.

There were others out on the course on road bikes and that is due to the popularity of the relay division of Boston Tri. Jeffrey Stallmeyer (shown here) had the fastest bike split of all the relays.

Another relay cyclist to hit the course was Boston Marathon Race Director Dave McGillivray. McGillivray has raced Ironman Hawaii 8x's, has run across the US, has run the Boston Marathon blindfolded with guides for charity and most recently ran 7 marathons in 7 days on 7 continents. He was at the event to support the local racing community. He admitted it had been a few months since his last bike ride.

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The rainy conditions didn't keep stronger riders from staying locked in the aerobars on what was a flat and fast course.

A few of the local pros, including 23 year old Spencer Ralston, gave their best effort out on course, while making sure not to take themselves too seriously.

After finishing Ralston rushed back onto the course to support his fellow racers.

Without a swim to spread out the front of the field, the racing was tight on both the men's and women's side. Lindsey Wolfe was amongst those in the hunt for the podium.

Despite a tough Spring due to prolonged illness, there was no stopping Angela Naeth. The Canadian splits her year between Boston and Boulder and is a previous winner of the race so knows the course well.

On the left wearing Bib #1 is Columbia Threadneedle's CEO, William "Ted" Truscott. He put forth a strong showing in the Sprint race and was joined by over a hundred colleagues, some racing as individuals but many more participating in the popular Corporate Relay division. O'Neil includes this division to urge Boston based companies to get employees involved in triathlon.

The two overall winners, Kanute and Naeth.

Boston Tri offers college students and youth athletes a steep discount to race and given Boston's large number of colleges and universities, this was a popular category.

Word is spreading across the pond with a number of athletes flying in from Europe to race in this iconic sporting city.