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USAT Tuscaloosa Tri-Palooza is Set for April 17-20

April 09, 2008, 12 a.m. (ET)

Community events, including athlete visits to local elementary schools, are part of the festivities

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. ( April 9 2008) Preparations are nearing completion for the first Tuscaloosa Tri-Palooza, a weekend-long festival celebrating multisport that will feature the 2008 U.S. Olympic Team Trials for triathlon on Saturday, April 19.

The complete schedule is located below.

The activities actually kick off when several elite Olympic-hopeful athletes visit local elementary schools for presentations on Wednesday, April 16 and Thursday, April 17. The program will reach nearly 8,000 Tuscaloosa youth and inspire them to greater things.

The athletes will share the importance of education, sportsmanship and physical fitness, as well as offer personal stories about how they became involved in the sport and their dreams of making the Olympic Team. There will be time for equipment demonstrations and a short video that shows what triathlon racing is all about.

“I am very much looking forward to meeting the students and teachers at Matthews Elementary school next week. This is a great opportunity for the elite triathletes to give back to the community that is supporting our Olympic Trials competition,” said Olympic Trials participant and 2006 USAT U23 National Champion Sara McLarty. “I enjoy opportunities like this to connect with America’s youth and talk about the benefits of being active and healthy. I was seven years old when I competed in my first triathlon. Since that day, this sport has been my passion and lifestyle. I use stories and events from my life as a professional triathlete to give examples of sportsmanship, education, fitness, culture. If my words can motivate just one child to try a new activity, my efforts are a success.”

For more information about the Schools Program, including a detailed schedule, contact:
USA Triathlon Contact: Tim Boruff 719-237-9986 : tim.boruff@usatriathlon.org
Tuscaloosa Contact: Chris Hester 205-534-4040 : chester@ymcatusc.org

Beginning Thursday at 6 p.m., the festivities continue with a parade, food vendors, opening ceremonies, elite athlete introductions and evening entertainment by local band 95 Reasons designed to bring the city and the visiting athletes together. The parade will start at the corner of University Blvd. and Greensboro Ave. and head north to the Athlete Village on the corner of Greensboro and Jack Warner Parkway.

The majority of the day on Friday, April 18 will be geared around athlete check-in, team briefings, food vendors, and a sponsor expo at the Athlete Village located on the corner of Jack Warner Parkway and Greensboro Avenue. The night will close with the traditional pasta party for all participants at 6 p.m. at the Athlete Village, hosted by the Tuscaloosa Convention & Visitors Bureau.

The racing begins on Saturday, April 19, with the USA Triathlon Collegiate National Championship set for 7 a.m. The Olympic Trials races follow, with the elite women starting at noon and the men’s race beginning at 2:30. An awards ceremony and post-race press conference will take place following the men’s race.

Two additional races are planned for Sunday, April 20: the Tuscaloosa Triathlon (an open event for the community) at 8 a.m. and the USAT Twenty-12 Talent ID Invitational at 11:30 a.m.

All races will begin and end at River Road Park East, on Jack Warner Parkway.

U.S. OLYMPIC TEAM TRIALS COURSE DETAILS

Swim Course – 1.5k / 0.9 miles
The 1500 meter swim course heads east in the Black Warrior River with a downstream cross and upstream swim forming a figure nine and is similar to the Beijing Olympic course.  

Best Viewing Area
River Road Park East at the overlook of the Black Warrior River.

Bike Course – 40k / 24.8 miles
The bike course starts with a short steep climb up Hackberry Lane immediately out of transition with an 180 degree turn at the top leading to a fast descent back down to Jack Warner Parkway, flat sections along the river, a challenging switchback climb up Queen City Avenue for approximately one-quarter mile and a fast descent back to Jack Warner Parkway on 21st Avenue. Bike course will continue east on Jack Warner Parkway with a right turn back onto Hackberry Lane to start next lap or continue straight to transition area after 8 laps are completed. 

Best Viewing Area
Intersection of Jack Warner Parkway and Hackberry Lane.

Run Course - 10k / 6.2 miles 
The run is flat and heads west out of the transition area along Jack Warner Parkway and returns to River Road Park East along the River Road Park scenic path. The run course will be 4 laps for a 6.2 mile (10k) course. The finish line will be located along the path overlooking the Black Warrior River.
Best Viewing Area
Overlook at River Road Park East.

Find out more about the 2008 U.S. Olympic Team Trials.

For more about other Tuscaloosa Tri-Palooza events, Collegiate Nationals, the Tuscaloosa Triathlon, and the Twenty-12 Talent ID Race.


Tuscaloosa Tri-Palooza Schedule of Events

Thursday, April 17

ALL DAY               School Program
3:00pm                   Elite Athlete Press Conference (Four Points Sheraton Hotel-Ballroom)
4:00pm-6:00pm      Xcell Academy along with Hair Impressions presents “Giving Back is the New Black” Cut-a-thon (Athlete Village)
4:00pm                   Olympic Trials - Athlete Briefing (Four Points Sheraton Hotel-Governor’s Room)
6:00pm                   Parade, Opening Ceremonies and concert by 95 Reasons

Friday, April 18 

ALL DAY  School Program
10:00am-7:00pm    Packet Pick Up (Collegiate Nationals & Tuscaloosa Triathlon) (Athlete Village)
10:00am-7:00pm    Day 2 of Xcell Academy “Giving Back is the New Black” Cut-a-thon (Athlete Village)                                                 
2:30pm-3:30pm      Collegiate Team Captain Briefing (Team Captains Only) (Transition 
   Area)
3:30pm-4:00pm      Athlete Meetings with Regional Collegiate Commission Representative (All athletes welcome) (Transition Area)
4:00pm-4:30pm      Collegiate Conferences Meeting (All athletes welcome) (Transition Area)
5:00pm-6:00pm      Collegiate Rules Briefing with Head Official (River Road Park East-Transition Area)
5:00pm-6:00pm      Twenty-12 Race Briefing (Four Points Sheraton Hotel-Governor’s Room)
6:00pm-8:00pm      Pasta Dinner (Athlete Village)

Saturday, April 19 (River Road Park East)

5:00am-7:00am     Transition Open
7:00am                  Collegiate National Championship
9:00am-3:00pm     Packet Pick Up (Tuscaloosa Triathlon)
12:00pm                USAT Olympic Trials-Elite Women
2:30pm                  USAT Olympic Trials-Elite Men
4:45pm                  Olympic Trials Awards Ceremony (Approximately 4:45pm) (Race Venue)
6:00pm                  Collegiate Award Ceremony (Athlete Village)
7:00pm                  Olympic Trials – U.S. Athlete Reception (Bryant Conference Center)

Sunday, April 20th– (River Road Park East)

6:00am-8:00am  Transition Open
7:30am                  Race Briefing
8:00am                  Tuscaloosa Triathlon
10:00am                Tuscaloosa Triathlon Awards Ceremony
11:30am                Twenty-12 Talent ID Women
1:00pm                  Twenty-12 Talent ID Men
2:30pm                  Twenty-12 Talent ID Awards Ceremony