TARA NOR­TON

THE FIRST EVER DÓXAWOMAN

Triathlon Magazine Canada - - Ironman World Championship - BY HE­LEN POW­ERS

THE AMER­I­CAN STATE of Utah hosts an overnight triathlon that cov­ers 285 miles in a non-stop, two-day time­frame. The Dóxa Three­lay is billed as an event to share with teams of 12 peo­ple, or, like Toron­to­nian Tara Nor­ton, you can do the whole thing your­self. This year she be­came the first solo woman to con­quer this beast of an event.

The Dóxa race has 36 legs that don’t fol­low the tra­di­tional se­quence of swim, bike, run. There are back-to-back legs of each dis­ci­pline and vary­ing com­bi­na­tions of all three dis­ci­plines. This chal­lenges a triath­lete in new ways, es­pe­cially with 28 tran­si­tions and a course that in­cludes two moun­tains with el­e­va­tions well over 9,000 feet.

In pre­vi­ous years, two men suc­cess­fully com­pleted the solo course and each were dubbed a Dóxa­man. The race di­rec­tors re­ally wanted to crown a Dóxawoman in 2018 and a friend men­tioned Nor­ton to the or­ga­niz­ers as a pos­si­ble con­tender.

Nor­ton is a for­mer pro­fes­sional triath­lete with a pas­sion for ul­tra-dis­tance races. She com­peted at the Iron­man World Championship in Kona six times with a best 12th place fin­ish. In the Ul­tra­man World Championship in 2016, she was the se­cond woman with a time of 27:56:49.

In Novem­ber 2017, a Dóxa race di­rec­tor reached out to Nor­ton about their Au­gust 2018 race. “He asked if I would at­tempt their solo cat­e­gory and I said yes,” ex­plains Nor­ton. “I was in­trigued by the dif­fer­ent se­quences of the swim, bike and run legs.”

She had cov­ered sim­i­lar dis­tances over sev­eral days with Ul­tra­man races, but Dóxa would be an all-nighter event and the sleep de­pri­va­tion would turn out to be a big chal­lenge.

Nor­ton and her dy­namic crew down­loaded the Of­fi­cial 2018 Dóxa Bible and trans­formed it into an ex­tra­or­di­nary

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