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Triathlon draws thousands

ETA Webmaster Note: The running portion of this triathalon was done on the Eastern trail. This article makes several references to the Eastern Trail.

Posted: Tuesday, August 28, 2012 12:16 pm | Updated: 11:30 am, Wed Aug 29, 2012.

OLD ORCHARD BEACH – Swim 1.2 miles. Bike 56 miles. Then run 13.1 miles.

And do it starting at 6 a.m.

Sounds crazy, but that’s what nearly 1,200 triathletes from all over the country and around the world did Sunday in the inaugural Revolution3 Triathlon in Old Orchard Beach. Revolution3 Triathlon, a group that organizes professional events nationally, put on the race, and its $25,000 purse drew 33 professionals from the upper echelons of the triathlon world, as well as scores of amateur competitors.

Putting on such a large event in a small seaside town presented a logistical challenge for Old Orchard Beach, Assistant Town Manager Louise Reid said, but in the end the event went off without a hitch.

“The comments that have been made to me by volunteers and department heads who were involved was that it was one of the most organized events that they’d been a part of,” Reid said. “It was smooth, it was well attended, and the comments that were made to our police officers and our volunteers were thank you from the company and all the participants.”

Not all of the competitors completed the long-distance 70.3-mile half-Ironman course. Many competitors, including the professionals, opted for the 0.9-mile swim, 24.8-mile bike and a 6.2-mile run Olympic Rev route.

The swim portion of the race took place off Old Orchard’s well-known beach, ending at the Pier, where the athletes got out of the water and transitioned to the bike event.

The bike course winded out into the countryside, snaking through the roads of Old Orchard Beach, Saco, Dayton, Lyman, Waterboro, Hollis and Scarborough, and the last-leg running portion took the athletes through Scarborough Marsh and over a portion of the Eastern Trail before coming full-circle back to the finish line on 1st Street in Old Orchard Beach.

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