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Boiling Springs Triathlon good race for beginners

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BOILING SPRINGS — Boiling Springs Triathlon officials expect around 100 participants in this year’s biking, swimming and running event Aug. 10 beginning at the Boiling Springs Pool at 2 Mountain Road.

The swim event involves 18 lengths of the Boiling Springs Pool — equal to 900 yards — while the cycling requires two laps of an eight-mile course followed by a three-mile run.

All proceeds from registration will benefit Project SHARE. The fee for participants was $65 or $75 each, depending on when they registered for the event.

Registration for this year’s race is closed.

“The race grows in popularity each year,” said Lynda Ballentine, president of the event. “Because we swim in the Boiling Springs Pool, we are limited in the number of participants we can accept.”

She said a total of 134 participants have signed up for this year’s race, including 101 individual racers and 11 teams.

Registration closed in May. Ballentine said the event does little advertising because many participants return each year, and usually bring friends.

“Being a sprint triathlon, this is a great race for beginners,” Ballentine said. “The distances are not overwhelming and are more attainable for some than other longer races.”

The swim is held in a pool as opposed to open waters, which Ballentine said is less intimidating for beginners. She described the atmosphere as “small enough that participants don’t feel lost in the crowd.”

The event began in 2005, when Susan Allen, of Carlisle, decided to attempt a triathlon with nine of her friends. She convinced Tom Iwanowicz, the owner of the Boiling Springs Pool, to allow them to swim in the pool before it opened on a Saturday morning. Ballentine said Allen also developed a bike course and gathered some volunteers for the 10-person contest.

“People heard about it and asked if they could be a part of it the next year, and in 2006, the Boiling Springs Triathlon opened to the public,” Ballentine said. “In 2007, we became incorporated and are now an official 501(c)3 nonprofit organization.”

Ballentine said the volunteer committee members begin meeting in January to start planning for the August race. About 40 are needed each year. The committee decided to first donate leftover funds to Project SHARE in 2006. after it was determined that money would be leftover. Since then, she said sponsors are sought for the race, Spectators are welcome to watch and cheer on the racers.

“Training for triathlons is a great way to stay fit and healthy without getting bored by always doing the same workout,” Ballentine said. “The Boiling Springs Triathlon is a race that is friendly to beginners yet competitive for those who are looking for a challenge.”

For more information about the race, including route maps, event details and previous results, visit www.bstriathlon.com. Those interested in volunteering should send an email to bstriathlon@yahoo.com.

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