COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — USA Triathlon today announced that the rescheduled 2020 Toyota USA Paratriathlon National Championships will be held Sunday, Sept. 20, in Cocoa Beach, Florida, as part of the Ron Jon Cocoa Beach Triathlon hosted by Smooth Running. The championship was originally scheduled to take place as part of the Legacy Triathlon in Long Beach, California, on July 18, but the event was canceled for 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
NOTE: The rescheduled Toyota USA Paratriathlon National Championships are contingent upon the City of Cocoa Beach continuing to allow large-scale events by the rescheduled race date of Sept. 20.
“Like most multisport athletes nationwide, our elite paratriathletes have seen a majority of their race season canceled or postponed due to COVID-19 — and for some, this included the Tokyo Paralympic Games,” said Amanda Duke Boulet, Paralympic Program Director at USA Triathlon. “We are pleased to partner with Smooth Running to host the rescheduled Toyota USA Paratriathlon National Championships in Cocoa Beach, and to give our athletes the chance to put all of their dedicated training to the test this fall.”
“Florida's Space Coast looks forward to welcoming the nation’s top paratriathletes to Cocoa Beach,” said Mitch Varnes, Ron Jon Cocoa Beach Triathlon race director and owner of race production company Smooth Running. “We’re excited for the opportunity to host the Toyota USA Paratriathlon National Championships and proud to showcase Cocoa Beach for an awesome weekend of racing, and to give the chance for athletes to have a new opportunity to chase national titles.”
At the rescheduled Nationals, paratriathletes will cover a protected 0.25-mile swim in the Banana River adjacent to the Cocoa Beach Country Club, followed by a 12.5-mile flat out-and-back bike along coastal highway A1A before finishing with a 5-kilometer run through the riverfront Cocoa Beach Golf Course.
Athletes wishing to compete at the 2020 Toyota USA Paratriathlon Nationals must be officially classified in a paratriathlon sport class and must meet the amended qualification standards, which were published on June 11 and can be found at usatriathlon.org. Individuals who are not classified or who do not meet the qualification standards may choose to race in the PC Open Division, which does not require qualification. Registration is currently open here. A National Classification opportunity will be offered in Cocoa Beach prior to the event.
In addition to chasing national titles, athletes competing at the 2020 Toyota USA Triathlon Paratriathlon National Championships also have the opportunity to qualify for the Toyota U.S. Paratriathlon Development Team Program, designed to identify and develop athletic potential leading into the Paris 2024 Paralympic Games. More information on the Toyota U.S. Paratriathlon Development Team Program is available by clicking here.
Prior to being selected as the host city for the rescheduled 2020 Paratriathlon National Championships, the Ron Jon Cocoa Beach Triathlon was named the 2020 Southeast Paratriathlon Regional Championship. The event, which also features age-group triathlon and duathlon races and a relay division, has twice been named as a finalist for the Triathlon Business International “Best First Timer’s Race” award. To register as an age-group athlete, click here.
Continual updates from USA Triathlon regarding COVID-19 are available at usatriathlon.org/covid-19. USA Triathlon also launched the Safe Return to Multisport initiative, a comprehensive set of best practices and recommendations for race directors, coaches and athletes to implement to resume racing and group training safely as the nation recovers from COVID-19. All documents can be found at usatriathlon.org/safe-return.
USA Triathlon continues to monitor the situation surrounding COVID-19, while following the guidance of local authorities, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO), when making decisions regarding the status of USA Triathlon events and programs. Any further potential changes to USA Triathlon’s National Championships event calendar will be communicated as soon as possible.
About USA Triathlon
USA Triathlon is proud to serve as the National Governing Body for triathlon, as well as duathlon, aquathlon, aquabike, winter triathlon, off-road triathlon and paratriathlon in the United States. Founded in 1982, USA Triathlon sanctions more than 4,300 events and connects with more than 400,000 members each year, making it the largest multisport organization in the world. In addition to its work at the grassroots level with athletes, coaches, and race directors — as well as the USA Triathlon Foundation — USA Triathlon provides leadership and support to elite athletes competing at international events, including International Triathlon Union (ITU) World Championships, Pan American Games and the Olympic and Paralympic Games. USA Triathlon is a proud member of the ITU and the United States Olympic & Paralympic Committee (USOPC).