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USA Triathlon Set to Bring National Championships Back to Portland

Aug. 01, 2008, 11:32 a.m. (ET)

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – USA Triathlon is pleased to announce its 2008 Age Group National Championship and Elite National Championship will be held at Henry Hagg Lake outside Portland, Ore., on Saturday, Sept. 20.

With the success of last year’s amateur event, USAT officials were excited to bring in the professionals, some of whom will be competing for the United States in August at the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games.

In addition, the USAT Art & Science of Triathlon International Coaching Symposium supported by Training Peaks will be held in Portland from September 21-23.

"We are thrilled to be hosting triathletes from throughout the country and are especially excited this year to have some of the world's top professionals competing in the Elite National Championship at Hagg Lake," said Drew Mahalic, CEO of the Oregon Sports Authority. "We invite Oregonians to come out and join the festivities by participating, volunteering and watching."

Close to 1,400 age group triathletes (from ages 18 to 88) will be on the start list in the morning after qualifying at regional events throughout the past year. This select group of U.S. athletes will compete in a 1.5k swim, 40k bike, and 10k run with a goal of qualifying for the 2009 International Triathlon Union Age Group World Championship on the Gold Coast of Australia. The top 16 in each age group will earn a spot on Team USA.

For the first time in the history of the USAT Age Group National Championship, athletes will be competing not only for themselves but their state of residence as well. Using a cross country meet-style scoring system, USAT will tabulate team scores based on the following:

1.    The top three overall males and females
2.    Fastest master (F 40-54, M 40-59)
3.    Fastest grand master (F 55+, M 60+)

The top state will be crowned the nation’s best at the Olympic distance.

The men’s and women’s elite races, featuring close to 100 of the top professionals in the U.S., will take place in the afternoon. These races are the same distance as the amateurs, but feature a spectator-friendly, multiple-loop course in a draft-legal format. Members of the 2008 U.S. Olympic Team, including Hunter Kemper, Laura Bennett, Jarrod Shoemaker, Sarah Haskins, Matt Reed, and Julie Swail Ertel, are scheduled to race.

The Vendor Expo with product demos, contests, and giveaways will add to the event’s excitement.

Schedule of Events
Friday, September 19
12-7 p.m.    Packet Pick-up and Expo
2-7 p.m.    Bike Check-In

Saturday, September 20
5:30-7:45 a.m.    Pre-race Parking Shuttles begin
6-7:45 a.m.    Transition Area Open
8 a.m.    Age Group National Championship
11-12 p.m.    Annual USAT Membership Meeting (Expo Tent)
12-4 p.m.    Expo Festivities (vendor demos, contests and giveaways)
12:15 p.m.    Elite Women’s National Championship
1:45 p.m.    Elite Men’s National Championship
4-6 p.m.    Awards Ceremony and Dinner
6-7:30 p.m.    Post-race Parking Shuttles

Find out more about the event

Art & Science of Triathlon International Coaching Symposium, September 21-23
Supported by Training Peaks

The event, which will be held September 21-23 at the Embassy Suites Hotel – Portland Washington Square in Portland, Ore., will feature a dynamic lineup of national and international triathlon experts discussing the latest in triathlon research, trends and coaching.

The presenters and topics at the Symposium include: Bob Seebohar – metabolic testing, Inigo Mujika – peaking and tapering, Bobby McGee – mental skills and running, Randy Wilber – training of the elite endurance athlete: physiology "checklist," Nicholas Romanov – running, and many more.

Keynote speakers include Dean Karnazes, John Naber, Antarctic Mike and Jim Ryun.

"USAT is proud to offer the 2008 Art and Science of Triathlon International Coaching Symposium as an excellent opportunity to bring together the best speakers and researchers from around the world to discuss the latest in research, training and coaching for triathlon," said Linda Cleveland, USAT coach development manager. "The keynote speakers and lecturers will provide motivation and information everyone attending can use in their coaching, training, racing and everyday lives."

Find out more