HITS Triathlon Series debuts in Waconia Aug. 16-17

HITS Triathlon logo CMYKOver 300 athletes will participate in the inaugural HITS Twin Cities Triathlon – Waconia, MN this weekend.

Designed for seasoned triathletes as well as first-timers, the HITS Triathlon Series features five distances over a single weekend offering “A distance for everyone!” More than 40 athletes will attempt Minnesota’s very first full distance triathlon this weekend.

They will participate in a 2.4 mile swim before biking 112 miles and running 26.2 miles – no small feat for anyone.

The event will be held at Lake Waconia Regional Park, starting bright and early on the morning of Saturday, Aug. 16 and continuing on Sunday, Aug. 17.

The schedule includes:


Saturday, Aug. 16

• 7 a.m.: Half and Full distances start

• 2 p.m.: Half distance Awards Ceremony


Sunday, Aug. 17

• 7 a.m.: Sprint and Olympic male wave starts

• 8:30 a.m.: Full distance Awards Ceremony

• 9:15 a.m.: Sprint distance Awards Ceremony

• 10:30 a.m.: Olympic distance Awards Ceremony

• 11:30 a.m.: HITS Open race starts

• 12:30 p.m.: HITS Open Awards Ceremony

The event is attracting athletes that hail from all over the country.

Julie Halvorson, 56, of Chanhassan, will be racing in the full distance as a member of Team in Training, in memory of her friend Wayne who lost his battle with Lymphoma. TNT trains you for endurance events while you fund-raise for Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. Before joining TNT, Halvorson had never biked more than 10 miles in a day, swam more than 50 yards, or run a mile.

Pat Hamler, 46, of Eau Claire, Wisconsin will be competing in his second full distance triathlon. He is a member of Team Firefighter, which includes firefighters from all over the U.S. and Canada competing in triathlons to bring awareness to a cause. He races for the Code 3 for a Cure foundation and their efforts to help firefighters with cancer. In the past year he has finished two marathons in complete firefighting gear and air pack.

Ladd Ojala, 44, of Minneapolis, will be competing in the half distance triathlon. He has always loved physical fitness and during all triathlons thinks of the Henry David Thoreau quote, “I can think of no more encouraging fact than the unquestionable ability of man to elevate his life through conscious endeavor.”

Dena Childs, 43, of Austin, Texas will be racing in the half distance triathlon. She had been looking forward to doing the HITS Marble Falls half triathlon in April, when a fall during a trail run bruised her ribs and kept her from competing. She’s excited to be traveling to Waconia to get back into the triathlon action.

Kelly Trom, 27, of Minneapolis, will be competing in the half distance triathlon. All through high school and college Trom was on the swim team. Once she gave up competitive swimming she decided to start running. She then figured that she’d try triathlons since she was already an avid swimmer and runner.

Course maps and additional information about HITS Twin Cities – Waconia, MN is available at http://hitstriathlonseries.com/waconia-mn.

To learn more about HITS Triathlon Series, visit www.HitsTriathlonSeries.com.