Today’s column in the Post Register previews the annual Kids Tri Harder triathlon, which I’ll be covering Saturday. This will be the final Medal Stand column until September to accommodate prep sports fall previews.
The Medal Stand: Entries for 13th Kids Tri Harder surpass 150
By MARLOWE HEREFORD
What is believed to be the biggest kids triathlon in Idaho takes place Saturday in Idaho Falls.
The 13th annual Kids Tri Harder triathlon, which is open to participants ages 13 and younger, is scheduled for 8 a.m. Saturday at the Wes Deist Aquatic Center. The swim takes place at the Aquatic Center while the cycling and running portions take place outside the building. Aquatic Supervisor Ashli Johnson said the cycling and running courses are longer for older participants, but they will still be within close range of the Aquatic Center building.
Johnson has been involved with Kids Tri Harder for all but two years of its existence. She recalled much smaller participation numbers in the event’s early years, and then those numbers doubled. As of Wednesday, registration for Saturday is at 156. Participation numbers have been in the 140s since 2013, making the triathlon the largest one for kids in the state.
“I imagine it’s gonna be at 165 by Saturday,” Johnson said. “I really want to get 200 one year. This year, we kinda got over that 150 mark.”
Kids Tri Harder features four divisions: mini (kids age 6 and younger), super (kids age 9 and younger), mega (kids age 12 and younger) and extreme (kids age 13 and younger). Johnson said participants can choose which category to compete in based on their experience. For example, a 5 year-old can decide to compete in the super division.
Johnson said those four divisions—and the flexibility of choice available for registered athletes—have influenced the growing participation numbers as well as greater awareness of the event.
“We get a lot of kids that come back every year,” Johnson said. “Some of the kids that age out of the program come back and help. It’s just been a very good program.”
Check in for Saturday’s event is 7:30 a.m. Registration can be done at activityreg.com, in-person at the Aquatic Center or by phone at 612-8519. Competition begins at 8 a.m. and a free pancake breakfast will follow.
Coming up locally
The ninth annual HeART of Idaho Century Ride takes place Saturday in Idaho Falls, beginning and ending at Snake River Landing. The event has four courses: 25 miles, 62 miles and two-100 mile options (the Century and “Cupcake 100,” the latter of which is entirely flat).
The Wolverine Canyon Marathon takes place Saturday in Blackfoot. It is a cystic fibrosis awareness event.
Team USA Update
Jake Dalton announced his retirement from competitive gymnastics on Wednesday. The 25 year-old from Reno won four world championship medals and competed on the 2012 and 2016 U.S. Olympic teams.
The International Association of Athletics Federations World Outdoor Championships continue through Sunday in London. Three-time Olympian Usain Bolt of Jamaica ran his final individual race on Saturday, taking third in a three-way photo finish in the men’s 100-meter final. Justin Gatlin won in 9.92 seconds, fellow American Christian Coleman, who led the race early, was second in 9.94 and Bolt was third in 9.95. It was Bolt’s first loss in a 100-meter final since 2013 at the Rome IAAF Diamond League meet, where Gatlin beat him. Bolt’s final international race before retirement will be the 4×100 on Saturday. The women’s 100 final was also tight and the gold also went to a U.S. athlete. Tori Bowie won at the line in 10.84.
Among the other U.S. medals at worlds were a bronze in women’s marathon by Amy Hastings Cragg (first worlds marathon medal by a U.S. woman since 1983), bronze in men’s 3k steeplechase by Evan Jager (first men’s steeplechase worlds medal for U.S.), silver in women’s 1,500 by Jenny Simpson (her third top-two world championship finish), gold in men’s pole vault by Sam Kendricks and gold and bronze in the women’s 400 final by Phyllis Francis and Allyson Felix, respectively. Team USA leads the total medal count through Wednesday evening with 15.