Boulder’s race season is quickly approaching. Whether your sport is running, biking, swimming or something else, Boulder has a competition for you. But one of Boulder’s most looked forward to (and most intense) races of the summer is the Ironman competition.
The Ironman race is a triathlon, comprised of a 2.4-mile swim, followed by a 112-mile bike ride and finishing off with a full marathon run (26.2 miles). These athletes cover 140.6 miles in one day. The Ironman is widely considered one of the hardest one-day events in the world. The men and women who compete in this race are in optimal physical shape and watching them compete is a treat in and of itself.
Boulder’s Ironman event is one of the largest Ironman competitions, with more than 2,000 athletes coming into town to participate.
The event takes place June 10 this year. Whether you watch the start at Boulder Res or the finish at 13th Street and Canyon, it’s worth attending.
We spoke with Tim Brosious, the race director for Boulder Ironman, about how to get the most out of this event.
New This Year
This is Ironman Boulder’s fifth year. Boulder has once again proven to be one of the best host cities for the race, which has dramatically increased athlete attendance. A big win for locals this year? Traffic congestion won’t be as bad as it has been in the past.
“Athletes will not be riding their bikes into town but running to the finish line at 13th Street and Canyon. This will help alleviate traffic congestion in town as the athletes will use some of the great bike paths we have in Boulder,”Brosious says. “Athletes will be using the Four Mile Creek Path, Elmer’s Two Mile Creek path, Goose Creek Path and the Boulder Creek Path.”
Information for Spectators
There are a lot of ways to enjoy an Ironman race. This year’s event is a weekend long affair, June 7-10.
“The Ironman Boulder Expo will be located at the Boulder High School from June 7-9. Forty-plus vendors will be promoting goods and services. Race day will have several beer gardens and food trucks available,” says Brosious.
If you’re watching the athletes on race day, be sure to come prepared.
Brosious advises, “Spectating an Ironman can be a very long day. Try to find a shady spot along the Boulder Creek Path, which is home to the Ironman Boulder run course or a place under a tree in Central Park just next to our finish line on 13th Street.”
Also bring plenty of sunscreen, snacks and a picnic to enjoy on the spectator lawn at the Boulder Res.
But the most important part of the day? The finish. You do not want to miss the athletes crossing the finish line.
Brosious explains, “The finish line of an Ironman is one of the most inspirational places to spectate a sporting event. The raw emotion from the athletes is unlike any other sporting event: smiles and tears on every athlete’s face (followed by most spectators).”
Things to Know
While traffic on Boulder streets won’t be as impacted by the race itself this year, there will still be many people coming into town for the event, as well as traveling to spectate.
“Highway 119 and Highway 36 will be heavily impacted; expect heavy delays on both these roads on June 10 from 6 a.m.-5 p.m.,” Brosious says.