Nearly 600 triathletes with a wide range of experience are set to participate Saturday in the third of four triathlons in the 27th annual Tri for Fun triathlon series at Shadow Cliffs Regional Park in Pleasanton.
Offering a shorter-than-normal course and a non-competitive atmosphere, Tri for Fun provides an opportunity for first-time triathletes to try the sport while also serving as a popular event for seasoned triathletes.
Because of the nature of the event, it's not unusual to see a 9-year-old running along side with a 78-year-old, according to organizers.
"Providing a fantastic experience for all participants is truly our main goal with the Tri for Fun," said Mark Aiton, co-principal of event organizer On Your Mark Events. "There are now literally thousands of people who cut their triathlon teeth with the Tri For Fun, and they keep coming back, as well as take part with our other longer-distance triathlons."
Saturday's Tri for Fun course features a 400-yard lake swim, an 11-mile bicycle ride and a 3.1-mile run. It is last of three non-timed, non-competitive triathlons in the series, with a fourth "Tri for Real" competitive triathlon set for mid-September.
Throughout the summer series, at least 60% of all participants will be beginning triathletes, according to organizers.
Check-in and registration begin at 5 a.m. Saturday, with the first wave hitting the water at 7 a.m. at the regional park, 2500 Stanley Blvd. in Pleasanton.
Entry fee for the Tri for Fun is $65 (non-timed) and $73 (chip timed) in advance, with $10 to be added to race-day registrants. Preregistered entry for relay teams is $180 (non-timed) and $188 (chip timed), $10 will be added to race-day registrants. Participants will receive a commemorative T-shirt, refreshments, snacks and entry into the raffle.
Though the Tri for Fun event is non-timed, a clock will be provided at the finish line for participants to measure their performances or the triathletes could choose to have their results recorded via time chip.
The series' first two non-competitive triathlon occurred June 8 and July 19. The competitive, full-length triathlon is set for Sept. 14 at the regional park.
To register or to receive more information about the series, contact On Your Mark Events at 209-795-7832 or visit its website, www.onyourmarkevents.com. Online registration is also available on www.active.com.