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5th Anniversary Philadelphia Insurance Triathlon Returns To Fairmount Park

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Philadelphia, PA – June 24, 2009 – This weekend marks the 5th anniversary of one of the top ranked multi-sport events in the country – the Philadelphia Insurance Triathlon presented by Suzuki. Taking place June 26-28, the event hosts three days of competition and activities with more than 4,000 athletes ready to swim, bike and run their way through Fairmount Park in Philadelphia, America’s greatest urban park.

The record breaking pro field for Sunday’s Olympic distance race includes two time defending women’s champion Rebeccah Wassner and David Thompson, also a two time champion. The professional wave will start at 6:55 A.M. on Sunday.

The race was named a top-five triathlon in the United States by Outside Magazine and was lauded as one of the top big city triathlons by Inside Triathlon Magazine. Founded in 2005, the Philadelphia Insurance Triathlon has grown from a one day event into a triathlon festival weekend featuring a multisport expo, kids events and both a sprint and Olympic distance triathlon.

“The Philadelphia Insurance Triathlon is proud to celebrate its fifth anniversary as one of the premier triathlons in the U.S.,” said Lars Beck, Race Director. “Thanks to the tremendous support of the city, Philadelphia Insurance Companies, Suzuki, and all of our sponsors we are thrilled to welcome our athletes and thousands of spectators to town this weekend. Additionally, we will host a record 31 pros competing in the Olympic distance pro field on Sunday proving that the Philly Tri has truly become a world-class event.”

The first day of racing is Saturday when 1,500 athletes will compete in the Sprint distance triathlon (.9K swim, 24K bike and 5K run) and 100 children will take part in the Kids Fun Run and Kids Duathlon. The main event takes place on Sunday when 2,500 athletes (professional and age-groupers) compete in the Olympic distance race (1.5K swim, 40K bike and 10K run). There is a $13,500 prize purse for the Olympic Distance Race.  The event expo, located on Smith Memorial Field next to the Please Touch Museum (Memorial Hall) in West Fairmount Park, is open on Friday and Saturday.

Returning for the fourth year as the event’s Title Sponsor is Philadelphia Insurance Companies.

“Philadelphia Insurance Companies is very proud to sponsor one of the top triathlons in the U.S. as it celebrates its 5th Anniversary,” said James J. Maguire, Jr., President and CEO, Philadelphia Insurance Companies. “We have been a partner in the event’s growth since the beginning and seeing the passion and dedication of all the competitors makes us very proud to host this world-class event here in our hometown. I am especially proud that certain proceeds from the event benefit the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society.”