Buck Hurley Triathlon cranks up Saturday, May 2

Published 12:00 am Monday, April 20, 2015

In less than two weeks, we will have the first part of the Buck Hurley Triathlon. The event is Saturday, May 2, and it is for ages six and under. In previous years, this event was at the end of the Sprint and the other kid’s triathlons, but last year we decided they should have their own day. And since its all on YMCA property, we will not be inconveniencing traffic for two days.

This event is for kids 6 and under. It doesn’t matter how young they are — we have had 3 year olds participate.

Water wings, side wheels, three wheelers and constant parental support are allowed. You can swim beside them in the pool, run beside them with the bike and/or run. Honestly, from all the triathlon races we do the first weekend in May, this one makes me the most nervous. You may ask “how fast can a 6 year old go?” Well, I can promise you —fast. And, we also have kids who are just starting to ride their bikes with no training wheels. The “official” logistics of their triathlon are a 25-yard swim (one length of the pool), half a mile bike (three times around the outside track behind the Hurley Y) and about 240 meter run (through the grass on marked course) to the finish line. Here is the kicker — they are having so much fun that some will go on and on with their bikes until the parents coast them back into the transition area. Last year, we had a child who went at least 6 times around the track on his bike (one mile!) — they couldn’t catch him. They will have their own transition area where their bikes are placed with the numbers on them. Helmets are mandatory and we saw some awesome helmets last year. After the swim, they go to the transition area where they, with the help of family or friends, put their sneakers and helmet on. They will go three (or more!) times around the track and then back to the transition area where they will take off for their run to the finish line and medal. Anyone is invited to come and watch — it starts at 4 p.m on Saturday, May 2, and registration is open until Friday, May 1, for the kids’ triathlons.

On to the older kids: Sunday, May 3 at 9 a.m. (could be 15 minutes earlier depending on the Sprint) the 12-13 year olds, immediately followed by the 9-11 year olds, will start their pool swim. For these ages, the triathlon logistics are the same but scored separately in their age group and gender. The 100-yard swim (4 lengths of the pool), 2-mile bike ride and 1-mile run are the events. Parents cannot be in transition but they can go on the road with them as long as they don’t impede other competing athletes. There will be road support and tons of volunteer support. The kids triathlons are presented by Busby & Webb Orthodontics. Thank you to all sponsors — without your support, we could not do this.

• The 2-mile bike ride for ages 12-13 and 9-11: Start behind Harris Teeter, come on the Greenway, take first right turn onto Milford Hills Road, first left onto Locke Street and a right onto Wilson and again right on Lincolnton, turning right behind Life Church to the back of the Y and the finish line.

• 1-mile run for ages 12-13 and 9-11 (and ages 7-8 bike): Start behind Harris Teeter on Greenway, turn right onto Milford Hills Road and stay on it until Lincolnton, turning right and again right behind Life Church to the finish line.

Ages 7-8 will start around 9.40 a.m. or after ages 9-13 are finished (if sooner). The bike event is the one-mile course and the run is a half-mile, which goes behind Harris Teeter around the cone and back and around the track to the finish line.

Last year, we had over 125 volunteers and this year we will need the same. We could not do this without the help of all these wonderful volunteers. Special thanks to the Salisbury Police Department, who has over 20 officers donate their time, Salisbury Fire Department, Salisbury Parks and Rec, City of Salisbury, National Guard and Salisbury High JROTC. We are still taking volunteers and there are multiple “shifts” available.

You do need to sign up to volunteer so we can plan accordingly. Shifts are Saturday May 2, 2-5 p.m., Sunday, May 3, 6 a.m. until done (around 10.30 a.m.), 6-9 a.m., and 8 a.m. until done. Clean up only is from 10 a.m. until done. You will receive an awesome Buck Hurley Triathlon T-shirt and breakfast if you are on the early shift. This is one of our biggest fundraisers to help families, individuals and children in need. The YMCA will never turn anyone away due to the ability to pay. We are a Rowan County United Way Agency and are so thankful for all their support. We would not be able to help in this magnitude if it wasn’t for Rowan County United Way and our Annual Campaign which the Buck Hurley Triathlon is part of. In the almost 18 years I have been with the YMCA, I have truly seen miracles happen because of their support and yours.

So, are you ready to “Buck Up”?!

Ester H Marsh associate executive Director JF Hurley Y and Co-Race Director of the Buck Hurley Triathlon