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Triathlon News & Notes: Ironman in Israel, U.S. Paralympic Team Announced, An Olympian’s Road Race Victory, and More

A look at some of the buzz we’ve picked up in the sport over the past seven days.

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Ironman heads to Israel for the first time

Ironman is adding a brand-new destination to its roster of races: Israel. Ironman 70.3 Tiberias triathlon, scheduled for November 12, 2021, is the first Ironman-branded event to take place in the country. Located in Northern Israel, Tiberias sits on the western slopes of the Jordan Rift Valley, and overlooks the Sea of Galilee. The course, which promises impressive scenery and a ride and run overlooking the sea, was attractive enough to nab 1,000 registrants in the first hour, and within a week, the first three tiers sold out. (Tier four is still open, however).

U.S. Paralympic team announced

USA Triathlon announced its 2020 U.S. Paralympic Triathlon Team this week, a squad of 17 that includes four defending medalists from Rio 2016, five athletes who have won World Paratriathlon Championship titles, and three Paralympic Games medalists in sports other than triathlon. Among those are Rio standouts Allysa Seely, Hailey Danz, Melissa Stockwell, and Grace Norman, plus Brad Snyder—a U.S. Navy veteran who lost his eyesight in a 2011 IED explosion while serving in Afghanistan—who earned five gold medals in swimming prior to switching to paratriathlon. The Paralympic triathlon events will take place Friday, Aug. 27, and Saturday, Aug. 28, at 5:30 p.m. ET in the U.S.

Morgan Pearson nabs 5K win amidst Tokyo buildup

Pro Morgan Pearson may be heading to Tokyo with Team USA, but that didn’t stop him from jumping into a 5K in Fort Collins, Colo. last week—and winning. The speedy Pearson (who is the cover model on our current Olympics issue) covered the race, which was held at 5,003 feet,  in an impressive 14:09. “Overall, it was a positive result considering I have been training really hard for Tokyo and didn’t take much rest,” Pearson posted.  “Plus I will never complain with a WIN.”

Related: Get to Know Morgan Pearson, the Newest U.S. Olympic Qualifier

USAT age group national champs open more slots

Milwaukee has cleared all capacity limitations for Age Group Nationals, and the once sold-out event is now back open. According to USAT, the event will be up to full capacity and an expected 3,000 athletes are slated to compete each day. While qualification is required for the championship events in both the sprint and Olympic distance, anyone can enter the Time to Tri Open Waves (those competitors will not be eligible for National Championship awards or Team USA Qualification.) Click here for more information and to register.

Marybeth Ellis makes a splash at local swim run

Once a competitor, always a competitor: Though she may have retired from professional triathlon in 2016, 11-time Ironman champ Marybeth Ellis can still move. Case in point: The 44-year-old won the annual Dave Reynolds Biathlon in Rehoboth Beach, Del. last weekend, covering the half-mile ocean swim in 11:19 and the 5K run in 20:03. Ellis, who holds the record for the fastest iron-distance race by an American woman (set at Ironman Austria in 2011 with a time of 8:43:34), grew up racing the Dave Reynolds Biathlon and has won the event nine times. “It was definitely more fun racing for 30 minutes (not the entire day,” Ellis, a mom of two, posted. “The best part was seeing the kiddos at the finish line.”

Triathlon community mourns the loss of Molly Hayes

With nearly 340 triathlons under her belt, Molly Hayes was as prolific of a racer as they come. In fact, the 88-year-old of Bozeman, Mont. was training for the Montana Women’s Triathlon when she passed away last week. Remembered as an icon of the sport by USA Triathlon Chief Sport Development Officer Tim Yount, Hayes had multiple age-group world championships to her name, and was looking forward to nabbing one more since her biggest competitor, Sister Madonna Buder (AKA The Iron Nun), had moved up to the 90-95 age group. “What a wonderful gift to yourself, to still be doing what you like to do,” Hayes said in a recent interview.

Spanish paratriathlete featured on the cover of Time Magazine

This week’s issue of Time Magazine features Spanish paratriathlete and doctor Susana Rodriguez on the cover of its special Olympics issue, highlighting her role on the front lines of Spain’s fight against COVID-19. Rodriguez, who was born with a severe visual impairment due to albinism, both trained as a triathlete and worked at a hospital, helping to rehabilitate Covid patients who were weakened by the virus and long ICU stays, then training after every shift. “I think sports helped me to be able to recover and go back in and face the next day at work,” she told the magazine.

Podcast Notes

  • Triathlete Magazine’s Fitter and Faster podcast brings on Dr. Stacy Sims, who chats about the physiological and psychological factors surrounding successful performance in the heat.  Later, Triathlete’s gear guru Chris Foster offers tips on gear and gadgets that help with racing and training in hotter weather.
  • On the Triathlete Hour, Morgan Pearson talks about his pivot from pro running, the hardest part of triathlon, becoming an Olympian, and the U.S. chances of winning the mixed relay in Tokyo.
  • Pearson also popped onto the ProTriNews podcast (available via video on Instagram), alongside Flora Duffy and host Chelsea Burns to talk about Tokyo prep.
  • The IronWomen Podcast brings on professional triathlete Lenny Ramsey, who battled her way to 8th place at Ironman Coeur d’Alene despite feeling sick on the bike and run.
  • Alistair Brownlee heads to The Greg Bennett Show to discuss his new book, “Relentless: Secrets of the Sporting Elite”. Brownlee is also on the World Triathlon Podcast this week, where he talks about failing to qualify for the Olympics, and his future plans after recuperating from ankle surgery.
  • Triathlon Taren features certified trainer Craig Slobodian about how athletes can use strength to get faster in triathlon, and why strength training is so critical for every endurance athlete.
  • The TriDot podcast offers various ways to know your training is the best quality possible and how to make the most of your limited time.
  • Jason Zinser, a Clydesdale National Champion, shares his journey in the sport on The Working Triathlete podcast. 
  • The MX Endurance Podcast debates this week’s hot-button topic: Can Lucy Charles-Barclay break Jan Frodeno’s current Iron-distance record of 7:35?