The day we watched Gwen Jorgensen win triathlon gold at the summer Olympics was about 5 months and 50 Fahrenheit degrees ago. What a great day for American triathletes and fans of endurance and multisport! No doubt it's playing a factor in the uptick on the interest meter at Raise the Bar. New triathletes are finding their way to the sport we all love and that's awesome!
Gwen generated all this interest doing what the majority of triathletes are doing - short course! Sprint and Olympic races are the typical gateway into our sport and the easiest (and most financially practical) distances to sustain over the long haul. True, many find their way happily and successfully to the Half or Full Iron distance events, but sprint and Olympic distance races continue to be triathlon's natural home base.
In reflection it makes sense our team demographics would look different. At RTB our adult athletes have found a home, and lifelong friends. Most remain in the sport for multiple years and many explore longer distances while happily repeating favorite short-course races as well. In this 14th year as a team, we've found depth.
USAT is getting ready to do a post-Olympic marketing campaign - the aim of which is to bring newbies into triathlon pipeline with sprint-distance first. We're looking forward to piggybacking with this effort to reach out to people in the Pacific Northwest. Without new growth, a lot of living things can go sideways - and triathlon is no different. We hope you'll encourage your friends to consider trying triathlon!
Raise the Bar
Race reports, upcoming events, news, and more, from RTB.