Iron­man Mary­land comes to Cam­bridge Sept. 30

Dorchester Star - - Regional -

CAM­BRIDGE — Ath­letes from around the world will come to Cam­bridge to run the Iron­man Mary­land 2016 triathlon on Sat­ur­day, Sept. 30.

Check-in be­gins at 9 a.m. on Wed­nes­day, Sept. 28 when the Iron­man Vil­lage will open at Long Wharf Park. The race will kick off at 6:45 a.m. on Sat­ur­day at Great Marsh Park.

The 2.4-mile swim will take place in the Chop­tank River. The 112-mile bike will take ath­letes through Dorch­ester County and into the Black­wa­ter Na­tional Wildlife Refuge. The 26.2-mile run is flat on coun­try roads pro­vid­ing a scenic and fast course.

The Iron­man Mary­land 2016 will of­fer 40 qual­i­fy­ing slots for the 2017 Iron­man World Cham­pi­onship held in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii.

Tim Smith, of Brook­lyn, N.Y., was the first to com­plete the 2015 race. He fin­ished the swim–which was short­ened from 2.4 miles to 3,000 me­ters due to wind–in 41:16, the bike in 4:38:34, and the run in 3:10:49 for a to­tal time of 8 hours, 38 min­utes, and 21 sec­onds.

Christo­pher Thomas, of Eas­ton, Conn., fin­ished sec­ond with a time of 8:50:21, and Ma­tias Palave­cino, of Alexan­dria, Va., took third with a time of 8:51:07.

Christina Lauer, of Wash­ing­ton, D.C., was the fastest fe­male, plac­ing 33rd over­all with a time of 9:42:56. Kristin White, of Man­lius, N.Y., was the sec­ond-fastest fe­male with a time of 9:47:56, and Pie­rina Lun­cio, of Guayn­abo, Puerto Rico, was the third fastest with a time of 9:48:26.

Cam­bridge be­came the 12th U.S. lo­ca­tion in the Iron­man Series when it hosted the in­au­gu­ral Iron­man Mary­land triathlon in 2014, be­com­ing the first Iron­man race in the Mid-At­lantic re­gion. The 2014 Mary­land Iron­man drew par­tic­i­pants from 17 coun­tries and 48 states.

Also held in Cam­bridge is the Iron­man 70.3 Ea­gle­man, a sum­mer event nine­teen years run­ning in the area.

The two Iron­man races in Dorch­ester County brought about 3,500 par­tic­i­pants and gen­er­ated $5.47 mil­lion in eco­nomic ben­e­fits to the re­gion in 2015.

“The races have a tremen­dous im­pact on the com­mu­nity eco­nomic-wise,” said Dorch­ester Cham­ber of Com­merce Ex­ec­u­tive Di­rec­tor Bill Christo­pher. “It brings a lot of peo­ple in. If only 1 per­cent of those peo­ple like the county and de­cide to stay, we just in­creased the pop­u­la­tion, tax base and busi­nesses that come in.

“It is a won­der­ful thing for the com­mu­nity, plus the over­all public­ity it brings in,” he said. “Even though the 2015 Iron­man was de­layed by two weeks for se­vere weather, it still had a sig­nif­i­cant im­pact.”

The Iron­man Foun­da­tion Com­mu­nity Fund also granted $10,000 to the Dorch­ester County YMCA in 2015 for the pur­chase of a 16-per­son pas­sen­ger bus to in­crease ac­ces­si­bil­ity to YMCA pro­gram­ming for the com­mu­nity’s youth.

PHOTO BY CHRIS KNAUSS

New Zealander Tim Smith smiles af­ter fin­ish­ing the 2015 Iron­man Mary­land in first place at Long Wharf Park in Cam­bridge. Smith com­pleted the 3,000-me­ter swim, 112-mile bike, and 26.2 mile run in 8:38:21.

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