U23 Competition

The Under-23 or “U23” division is a bridge between Junior Elite, Collegiate (Draft-Legal) and Elite competition.  To compete in the U23 division, an athlete must be between the ages of 18 and 23 as of December 31st of the competition year. Most U23 races are subdivisions within ITU Continental Cups. This means that in order to compete as a U23, an athlete must hold a USAT Elite License.

U23 athletes compete at the Sprint Distance (.75k/20k/5k) and Olympic Distance (1.5k/40k/10k) and the format is draft-legal. Most Junior Elites (ages 16-19 years) are encouraged to finish out their eligibility in the junior division before advancing to the U23 races because of the longer distances. U23 champions are recognized at the USAT U23 National Championship, PATCO U23 Americas Championship, and World Triathlon U23 World Championship.

Athletes interested in racing U23 are encourage to start with USAT's designated U23 Elite and National Triathlon Development Races (U23/NTDR), collegiate draft-legal events, and NCAA Women's events.  


USA Triathlon U23/NTDR Series

In 2023 we are launching the U23 Elite and National Triathlon Development Race Series for U23 elite and U25 non-elites athletes. The purpose of the USAT U23/NTDR Series is to provide a draft-legal pathway to a USAT Elite License and a competitive domestic race series for U23 elite development athletes. This series has a $3,000 prize purse per event sponsored by Human Powered Health ($750 for 1st, $500 for 2nd, $250 for 3rd). U25 non-elite athletes have the opportunity to earn their elite license by placing top 3 non-elite US citizen. *Note our official 2023 elite qualification criteria will be released in a few weeks.  Elite athletes over the race age of 23 are not permitted to race. Non-elite athletes over the race age of 25 may be permitted to race with permission from USAT High Performance staff on a very limited basis.

Event Name Date Location
Tritonman February 11, 2023 San Diego, CA
Clermont Draft Legal Challenge
March 4-5, 2023 Clermont, FL
St. Peters Triathlon April 15, 2023 St. Peters, MO
East Coast Triathlon Festival April 30, 2023 Richmond, VA
Jenny Lee Tri Cup June 16, 2023 Beaver Falls, PA


World Triathlon U23 World Championships 

Each year USA Triathlon qualifies a group of elite triathletes aged 18-23 who will compete at the World Triathlon U23 World Championships. The 2023 World Championships will be held September 22-23 in Pontevedra, Spain.  Criteria coming soon.

USA Triathlon U23 National Championships

The USAT Under-23 National Championships is a draft-legal triathlon contested under World Triathlon Competition Rules. Usually, the championships is a sub-division of the World Triathlon Continental Cup, which requires a USAT Elite License for entry. 

The 2022 USAT U23 National Championships took place in Long Beach, CA as part of Legacy Triathlon.

FISU World University Championships

The FISU World University Championship is a draft-legal, World Triathlon sanctioned triathlon contested every two years. The most recently FISU WUCs took place in 2022 in Maceio, Brazil. USA Triathlon endorses a team to provide collegiate elite athletes with the opportunity to continue their athletic development by demonstrating their abilities at the highest levels of international triathlon competition, with a focus of maximizing podium performance. The event format is an individual sprint, draft-legal triathlon and a mixed relay.