Buffalo To Host USA Triathlon Events

April 21, 2011 Updated Apr 21, 2011 at 4:11 PM EDT

By WKBW News


Buffalo To Host USA Triathlon Events

April 21, 2011 Updated Apr 21, 2011 at 4:11 PM EDT

( release) USA Triathlon, Eclipse Multi-Sport and the Buffalo Niagara Sports Commission (BNSC) announced the creation of the Nickel City Triathlon (NCT), which will be a part of the six-city USA Triathlon Elite Race Series in 2011, 2012 and 2013.

The NCT will have its first running on Sept. 24 and 25, 2011. With more than 1600 athletes from United States, Canada, Mexico and parts of Europe expected in Buffalo to compete, the event will have an estimated economic impact of $500,000.

The 2011 race has the added distinction of serving as the 2011 USA Triathlon Elite National Championship. As such, the race will incorporate a special field of professional triathletes (up to 75 men and 75 women) who will compete for a share of the Elite Race Series' largest purse ($75,000). In addition, the NCT will be one of only two races where athletes can earn double points toward winning the overall series crown.

The race, which will use the draft-legal style of racing found in the Olympic Games, will take place at Gallagher Beach on Lake Erie and throughout South Buffalo.

Athletes will participate in one of three different race formats:

Olympic Distance: 1500 meter swim, 40 kilometer bike and 10 kilometer run
Sprint: 750 meter swim, 20 kilometer bike and 5 kilometer run
Elite Development: 750 meter swim, 20 kilometer bile and 10 kilometer run
The race will feature a spectator-friendly layout, as both the bike and run legs will take place on multi-loop courses, allowing fans to see each athlete several times.

Athletes can learn more information and register for the race at www.nickelcitytriathlon.com.

The bid process to bring this event to Buffalo involved a true partnership between Eclipse Multi-Sport and the Buffalo Niagara Sports Commission. Over the course of 18 months, the two organizations created a bid packet; held site visits and meetings with USA Triathlon; and worked closely with officials from the City of Buffalo and the County of Erie. "The USA Triathlon Elite Race Series offers elite triathletes the opportunity to compete in the type of high-level, draft-legal events that are rarely contested in the United States," USA Triathlon National Events Director Jeff Dyrek said. "Fans in Buffalo will have the chance to watch America's Olympic hopefuls in action and witness firsthand the excitement of draft-legal racing."

"There was a great deal of work involved in bringing a USA Triathlon Elite Race Series event to Buffalo," said Eclipse Multi-Sport Director Dan Horan. "I am honored and excited to be associated with a world-class event in my hometown."

"The Buffalo Niagara Sports Commission is proud to partner with Eclipse Multi-Sport to create the Nickel City Triathlon and bring some of the world's best triathletes to Buffalo," said Dottie Gallagher-Cohen, president and CEO of the Buffalo Niagara Convention & Visitors Bureau, which includes the BNSC. "The commitment of USA Triathlon to hold events in Buffalo for the next three years expands our community's reputation as a premiere amateur sports destination."

"The transformation of Fuhrmann Boulevard into the Outer Harbor Parkway and this region's proximity to Canada gave Western New York a competitive edge in securing this USA Triathlon event," said Congressman Brian Higgins. "Over the next three years, thousands of athletes from around the world will take to Gallagher Beach, Buffalo's waterfront, parks, and neighborhoods, placing this great community in the national spotlight and creating new economic opportunities for Western New York. I commend Dan Horan for taking the initiative to pursue this opportunity and the Convention and Visitors Bureau for helping to organize the event."

Erie County Executive Chris Collins said, "I am thrilled we will welcome elite athletes from around the country to Erie County this September. The investments the County is making in tourism through the Buffalo Niagara Sports Commission and the Convention and Visitors Bureau are paying off as we continue to attract world class events and visitors from near and far."

"I am pleased that Buffalo has been chosen as one of six cities to host the USA Triathlon Elite Race Series," said City of Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown. "For the next three years, Buffalo residents will welcome athletes and spectators from around the world, and our waterfront will offer great locations for the races. I support the collaborative efforts of Eclipse Multi-Sport and the Buffalo Niagara Sports Commission, look forward to working with both groups, and anticipate a very successful event."

The Nickel City Triathlon is presented by USA Triathlon, Eclipse Multi-Sport and the Buffalo Niagara Sports Commission, with support from Colgate Industries, Bert's Bikes, Runner's Roost, Cappelli's Catering, the Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority, Buffalo Niagara Riverkeeper, Rhyner Designs, Consumer's Beverage Centers, Gatorade and Dug's Dive.