After a successful debut last August, the DeWitt Crossroads Youth Triathlon is celebrating its second birthday with an expanded field.
All 75 spots in last year’s inaugural event were filled, so the cap of competitors for this year’s race, which is set for Friday, August 2 — the day before the 16th running of the DeWitt Crossroads Triathlon — has been raised to 100.
And that expanded field is filling fast, too, as DeWitt Parks and Recreation Director Kevin Lake noted there were just five openings left as of Thursday afternoon.
Three classes of young athletes — junior for six-, seven- and eight-year-olds; intermediate for nine-, 10- and 11-year-olds; and senior for 12-, 13-, 14-, 15-year-olds — will again compete in north DeWitt.
The night will begin with a swim — starting at 6 p.m. — at the DeWitt Aquatic Center with juniors swimming 45 meters, intermediates 100 meters and seniors 150 meters.
Competitors will then head to their bicycles for a trip around residential DeWitt. Cyclists will head west on 14th Street (home of the aquatic center), turn north onto 14th Avenue/Maynard Way, head east on Springbrook Lane and then head back to 14th Street via Eighth Avenue.
Junior competitors will do one lap with intermediates doing two and seniors three.
The triathletes will finish with a run around Ashindel Park with competitors again doing either one, two or three laps depending on their class.
Chip distribution will take place at 4 p.m. on race day at the aquatic center and the transition zone will open at 4:30, while a pre-race meeting is set to take place at 5:45 before the first athletes take off at 6.
The young competitors will provide a preview of things to come as the traditional adult version of the race — the DeWitt Crossroads Triathlon — takes place the following morning, Saturday, August 3.
Starting at 8 a.m., competitors will enter Lake Killdeer in pairs and begin a 500-yard swim.
After emerging from the lake and grabbing their bicycles, the triathletes will tackle a 15-mile ride that sends them west on Old Highway 30 into DeWitt before turning north on 290th Avenue/Humeston Road, hitting a turnaround point and, ultimately, heading back to Central DeWitt High School.
Now, all that stands between the athletes and the post-race party is a 5K run (3.1 miles), which, in a new wrinkle, will take them back to Old Highway 30, where they will head east before heading back to the school and the finish line.
Packet pickup for both triathlons will take place Wednesday, July 31, from 4:30 to 6 p.m. at Crawford Brew Works in Bettendorf and Thursday, August 1, from 4 to 6 p.m. at Central DeWitt High School.
The transition zones are set to open Saturday morning at 6 a.m. and a pre-race meeting is set for 7:45 a.m. at Lake Killdeer.