Southern Alberta was the center of attention back in June, as severe flooding tore through the province. Images of the highway being ripped apart and entire houses drifting by remain vivid memories for most Canadians. Looking around Banff it is difficult to tell that such an enormous natural disaster transpired here. A course change to avoid a still-treacherous section of Lake Minnewanka Scenic Drive was all that was required for the area to be once again race ready for the more than 1000 athletes, who represent 7 countries, making their way into Banff National Park for the fourth annual Subaru Banff Triathlon (Saturday September 7).
Known for its spectacularly beautiful course, this race has drawn some big names to the small town of Banff. Last year saw five Olympians out to participate, bringing with them all the excitement carried over from the London Olympic Summer Games. Special guests included Canada’s only gold-medalist, trampoline phenomenon Rosie MacLennan. Olympic Triathlete Lisa Mensink took to the course after shattering her arm in the London qualifier in San Diego. She finished second overall – wiping out the women’s field completely and managing to beat out all but one of the men.
As Alberta’s largest triathlon, this race gets quite a range of amateur athletes from a wide variety of disciplines. Truly a sport for everyone, this race includes weekend warriors to retired professional hockey players, national level competitive swimmers, internationally ranked BMX athletes, national speed skaters and professional snowboarders. They range in age from 14 to 69-years with everything in between. One triathlon is all it takes to start a lifelong addiction.
For Live Timing and information on the Subaru Western Triathlon Series please visit www.TriSeries.ca.