Steamboat Triathlon returns, with several new tricks |

Steamboat Triathlon returns, with several new tricks

— Lance Panigutti said the decision to add a sprint distance option to this weekend’s Steamboat Triathlon, in recent years an Olympic distance course, was made almost exactly a year ago based on feedback absorbed immediately after the 2013 race.

It happened before it was clear just how chock-full of triathlons summer 2014 would be in Routt County.

“A lot of people said, ‘This was such a fun event, but I wasn’t quite trained and ready for it,’” said Panigutti, who puts on two triathlons in the area through his company, Without Limits Productions. “We said, ‘Hey, we got the feedback. We have the course. Let’s pull the trigger and announce a sprint distance.’”

It has turned out to be a rather fortunate decision.

The Steamboat Triathlon returns to Lake Catamount on Sunday, and it will do so with slight uptick in competitors, an expected 360 compared to last year’s roughly 330.

However, more than a third are signed up for the two newest elements of the race, which are the sprint triathlon and an aquabike competition that is composed of only the swim and cycling legs.

“Without adding the sprint, we would have been way down. There’s no doubt about it,” Panigutti said.

He said he’s expecting 25 for the aquabike, 110 for the sprint triathlon and the remaining 225 for the Olympic distance race.

The long event includes nearly a mile of swimming in Catamount. It has 25 miles of cycling, starting at Catamount, heading into Steamboat Springs and returning. Finally, there’s 6.2 miles of running on roads near the lake.

The sprint race will included 0.46 miles of swimming, a bike course of 12.6 miles that will loop around on Routt County Road 14 and Colorado Highway 131 and 3.1 miles for the run, out and back along a road by the lake.

The transition area for the race will open at 6 a.m. Sunday and the race will begin at 8 a.m. with a dive into the lake. Awards are tentatively scheduled for 11 a.m.

Panigutti said anyone interested in volunteering can contact him at

Children’s event set for Saturday

The Steamboat Triathlon actually is the second such event of the weekend, after the Splash and Dash race at Old Town Hot Springs in Steamboat on Saturday.

That event, targeted at children, will include swimming and running segments.

“Basically it is an introduction to multi-sport,” said Joy Rasmussen, the race director.

The race is open to athletes between ages 7 and 15. The younger racers will go 100 yards in the water and race 1 kilometer. The older racers will double that, swimming 200 yards and running 2 kilometers.

Registration for the event costs $30 and is open until 8:30 a.m. Saturday, just before the event’s 9 a.m. start.

To sign up, check out

“Really, it’s to try to get kids energized and excited about multi-sport,” Rasmussen said. “We’re not including the bike stage, and that really opens the gates to kids who may not have a bike. We’re hoping to get a decent amount of kids.”

To reach Joel Reichenberger, call 970-871-4253, email or follow him on Twitter @JReich9

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