The Lake Zurich Triathlon is a local favorite for Chicago-area athletes. It has grown to over 1,000 participants for the sprint and Olympic distance. This year, it was one of the team races at Wellfit Performance Center.
Three weeks ago we lost one of our long-time athletes and local journalist Elizabeth Brackett, in an unfortunate bike accident on the Chicago Lakefront Path. Well fit owner Sharone Aharon organized it and encouraged his athletes to participate in this race as a memorial to honor Elizabeth Brackett. It was an emotional day for our community; Elizabeth inspired us all and will be missed greatly.
Lake Zurich is a suburb and a favorite training spot for many triathletes. An easy one-hour drive northwest from the city. The race organizers offered several pre-race packet pick up, as well as same day packet pick up. There was plenty of parking and plenty of volunteers.
In my opinion, it was a perfect day for triathlon with temps in the high 70’s and plenty of sunshine. The warm temperatures the week before warmed up the lake and on race day the water temps were 79-80 degrees; this made it non-wetsuit legal, boo!
The swim had a rolling start where athletes form a line according to their predicted swim times. The sprint went out first, followed by the Olympic. The course was well marked but the sun made it difficult to see the bouys. My recommendation is to wear tinted googles for sure. Also, keep in mind that the run to transition one from the swim is long and it is included in your swim time.
My only complaint for this race was the transition area; it was congested with the record numbers of participants this year, so there was little room to set up bike shoes, helmet, running shoes, etc.
The bike was mostly rolling hills through Lake Zurich and surrounding communities with over 80 percent of the course being closed to traffic which is always a plus. The run was by far my favorite, as we got to run two loops around the lake, making it scenic and great for spectators to cheer.
Overall, it was an amazing and inspiring day of racing in memory and honor of our fellow Well-Fit athlete Elizabeth. She inspired us and we showed up strong to make her proud. The endurance community in Chicago is small, tight knit, and very supportive group of people. It was great seeing so many friendly faces on the course including Multisport mastery and JHC coaching athletes.
At the end of the day, triathlon and endurance sports in general have the magic to bring people together. This is what is all about, community, friendship, support, encouragement and fun. I had a heavy heart coming into this race, and my goal was to stay mindful and present, and remember to be grateful I get to do this crazy sport and be a part of this amazing community. I not only accomplished my goal but managed a four minute PR and third age group win for the Olympic distance.
This was my first time participating in this race and I will be coming back. I highly recommend to anyone looking to do their first triathlon or those of us looking for some strong and healthy competition!
- Jennifer Harrison 1:05:51
- Karah osterberg 1:08:45
- Danielle Leyva 1:08:46
- Kevin Beades 59:43:11
- Connor oats 1:01:47
- Ben pruess 1:01:49
- Aneta Ziemianska 2:15:44
- Pamela Staton 2:17:51
- Karen Snyder 2:19:10
- Bradley woodford. 2:00:54
- Jackson Waters 2:01:23
- Christian Waterstraat 2:01:49