32nd Annual Scenic Mountain Triathlon Happens July 9th
The longest running triathlon in the state of West Virginia celebrates its 32nd race on Saturday, July 9th. Organized by the Richwood Chamber of Commerce, the Scenic Mountain Triathlon draws athletes from across the region to swim, ride and run through the Monongahela National Forest. I spoke with Richwood chamber of commerce president to find out more. I spoke with the Richwood Chamber of Commerce president to find out more.
MJW: My name is Mary Jane Williams and I am with the Richwood Chamber of Commerce and we sponsor the triathlon every year, and this, of course, is our 32nd year here in Richwood.
The race begins with a half mile swim in lake Summit, where the water temperature is usually around 60-70 degrees and wetsuits are recommended. Ms. Ms.Williams describes the beginning of the race as exciting as the swimmers plunge into the lake.
MJW: It’s amazing to see all these people get in the water and survive together because there’s so many at one time. They do set them in waves, but they’re just swimming aggressively across and back the lake.
After the swim, athletes hop on their bikes to ride 17.1 miles over and through the mountains. The race concludes with a 6.2 mile run around Cranberry Glades. Ms. Williams favorite part of the triathlon is the end.
MJW: I really like the finish probably most of all. It’s exciting to see them come in and finish with the times that they do finish at, whether it’s a good time or a long time. We’ve had people coming in with their sons running alongside them. We’ve had other people coming in and their little children catch up to them at the finish line and do the last part of the run, the last 30 yards with them. It’s an exciting thing to cheer them on and bring them in.
After the race, athletes and spectators eat and relax while they wait for everyone to cross the finish line. Once everyone has completed the race, there is an awards ceremony to celebrate the athlete’s accomplishments.
MJW: It’s amazing to see these people try to do this and compete. They’re competing for themselves as well as each other. They want to see that they can actually accomplish this.
Since 1985, this triathlon has held strong, even when tragic weather struck. When last year’s flooding prevented the race from being held on it’s usual second saturday, Richwood postponed the race to August.
MJW: We had a flood last year as you probably know. We went ahead and had it in August. We were not going to miss the triathlon. It’s a tradition around here and we wanted to keep our traditions. I hope people do come and spend some time in Richwood to see how much we bounced back and how quaint it is in Richwood. It’s a beautiful place to live.
Ms. Williams expects 70 participants this year, and encourages everyone to race, or at least come cheer on the athletes! To register for the event online online you can go to tristateracer.com, or go to richwood chamberofcommerce dot com to print out a registration form to mail in. or richwoodchamberofcommerce.org to print out a registration form to mail in.
For Allegheny Mountain Radio, this is Vaden Vosteen