The second annual World's Toughest Half-ironman triathlon took place Saturday, April 17 in Sierra foothill town of Auburn, CA. There were over 300 participants, led by the outstanding performances of Tim and Nicole DeBoom of Lyons, CO. Tim, the 2x Hawaii Ironman World Champion, completed the course in 4 hours, 28 minutes. The surprise runner-up was new professional Andy Martin of Bend, OR just over a minute behind DeBoom. Swede Clas Bjorling was 3rd, CJ Castle of Santa Barbara 4th and 2003 defending champ Gordo Byrn of New Zealand was 5th.
Nicole dominated the women's division with a 20-minute victory and an incredible 15th place overall time of 5:03.56. Canadian Marilyn McDonald was 2nd and Diana Hassel of Davis and the Mad Cows club was 3rd. Tim Sheeper of Team Sheeper won the special 40+ Triathlon Legends division, taking 7th overall in 4:47 ahead of all-time greats Scott Molina and Andrew MacNaughton.
The course lived up to its billing as athletes braved the unseasonably cold air temperatures and 56-degree water. The 56-mile bike course climbed into the Sierra with 5,600' of elevation gain, followed by a challenging and scenic 13.1-mile trail run in the Auburn state park.
The greatest success of this year's World's Toughest Half was thanks to the efforts of 185 volunteers, numerous local public agencies and the athletes and tri clubs that supported this young event,' said Auburn's Brad Kearns, event promoter. "It was a tremendous honor to have athletes the caliber of the DeBoom's racing. This event is going to explode to become a classic with 750 competitors expected next year. As always, the focus will be on the safety and satisfaction of the participants." Don't miss next years World's Toughest Half, scheduled for May 21, 2005.
Details and complete event results and photos can be found at: http://www.bradventures.com/wt/2004/2004eventsummary.shtml