somersault triathlon & duathlon event series preparation

coaches, clubs, and web sites

We recommend that anyone new to the sport of triathlon, should consult a coach, club or web site that focuses on guidelines and advice for the inexperienced, or first time participant. A selection of coaches can be found at

A particularly excellent web site for beginners or the inexperienced is - Guiding new triathletes into the world of mini-triathlons.

a somersault event series guide
You have just taken the big step and entered your first Somersault Triathlon/Duathlon Series event, and/or you want a refresher so you can be ready for race day. Knowing what happens on event day, and preparing properly for it, will make your first or your fiftieth triathlon more fun. Here are some tips that will help you look and feel like a seasoned pro at the event!

anyone who is healthy can do it!
We are not saying it is easy, but if you are reasonably fit and healthy you can do it. Just take your time and don't try to do too much. Your goal in the first one should be to finish and to enjoy the experience. If you are a veteran, set your goal to your fitness and health level. If you have any doubts about your health, or have not been exercising for some time, please consult your family physician before starting to train, or participating in an event.

training for the event
We don't offer coaching or training programs as part of the Somersault Event Series, because there are many others out there who are specialists at helping you prepare for the event. You can choose to prepare and train by yourself by visiting popular training web sites, or you can hook up with a local trainer, club, or training group. Click on the "Clubs and Coaches " button to locate some of these good people.

be prepared
That venerable Boy Scout motto says it all. The most important lesson in getting ready for your event, is to prepare well. Don't leave anything for event morning that can be done earlier. Things such as obtaining directions to the site, picking up a friend, packing the car, or filling up the gas tank can all be done the day before.

personal equipment and apparel

Somersault will not be responsible for lost, stolen, or damaged properties before, during, or after your event.

get there early
Get to the race site early - like 1 hour early.  Be there when the Race Kit Pick Up opens. Even better, pick up your Race Kit before race day if possible. Only pick it up on race day, as a last resort. You don't need the hassle on race morning - and neither do we.

rules and procedures
We won't repeat the Somersault rules, regulations, and procedures here. Visit the Somersault Event Series "Rules", "General Info" pages , as well as the event page itself before the race. Read everything carefully to reduce your anxiety on the day. Email with specific questions if you still have questions after reading our literature.

ipods, mp3s,walkmans and headphones
We do not allow the use or wearing of Ipods, MP3s, Walkmans, or head phones during the cycling portion of Somersault Triathlon, or Duathlon events. Wearing one will result in disqualification.

We do allow, but discourage, the wearing of such devices during the run, but advise you that if you do, you do so at your own risk. However you may only wear one ear plug, if you do use ear phone devices during a running event.

equipment and apparel
Equipment and apparel needs are modest but important. Equipment items are broken into three groups - the "need to have", the "optional stuff", and the "stuff that we provide".

need to have

  • Bathing Suit
  • Swim Cap – you must wear the swim cap (cap and colour) provided for safety and identification purposes (*the only exception is at The Early Bird)
  • Bicycle - you can use any bike you can find -road bikes are faster
  • Bicycle Helmet - check out the Rules and Regulations for the specs
  • Racing Shirt - must wear a shirt in the bike and run portions of the race
  • Competitor's number - on back during the cycle, on front during the run
  • Running Shoes - something easy to get into after the bike leg
  • Water Bottle - for your bike, as there usually isn't any water on the bike course
  • Bicycle shoes - if your bike requires them

optional stuff

  • Swim Goggles - many find the swim more enjoyable with them
  • Wet Suit - the water may be warm enough that you don't need one, but they keep you warm & afloat
  • Extra Shirt - you might want to switch shirts after the bike leg
  • Race Belt – an easier way to ensure that you have your number on the back for the cycle and the front for the run.  You may purchase one from us at race kit pick up.
  • Sun Glasses - especially for the bike - early morning may have you cycling into the sun
  • Hat - especially for the run if it is a hot, sunny day
  • Sun block for the same reason


  • Swim Cap - compulsory in the swim
  • Competitor's Bib and Pins - compulsory on the bike and run
  • Souvenir T-shirt
  • Neat Stuff - extra goodies often provided by sponsors in the race kit
  • Championchip Timing Chip - a timing chip affixed to a Velcro strap that ensures that we can record your performance (*this goes around your ankle and is worn throughout the entire event – yes, even in the water)

pre-race procedures and flow
Read the timetable provided on the event entry information form.  Arrive early - at the start of Race Kit Pick Up is best.

  1. Go directly to Race Kit Pick Up, if you haven't picked your kit up prior to race day. 
  2. Proceed from the Race Kit Pick Up directly to the Transition Zone (known as the T- Zone). This is an area enclosed by snow fencing where much of the on-site action will occur. You position your bicycle on a bike rack of your choosing - first come, first served! Check out how the more experienced do it.
  3. Set your equipment and apparel items neatly around your bike rack, so that they are easy to get at during the race. Be sure to pin your bib number on your cycling/running apparel at this time.
  4. Go to the Body Marking and Swim Cap Table in the T-Zone to obtain your swim cap and have your body marking done. We use the "buddy " body marking approach.  Just follow the directions on the table, make acquaintances with someone else there, and body mark each other - it's fun!
  5. Head for the Sportstats Timing Tent (near the finish line) to pick up your Championchip Chip timing bracelet for the race. Everyone must wear one and the timing people will tell you how and where.
  6. Explore the T-Zone for the various exits and entrances you will be using during the race. Familiarize yourself with them and plan your path to and from your bike rack. There is a swim/run entrance where you arrive from the triathlon swim or the duathlon run and head to your bike rack. There is the bicycle exit/entrance where you walk or run your bike out to the bike start, and walk it back after the bike finish. And there is the run exit where you head off for the final run.
  7. Identify the start location for the triathlon swim or duathlon run. You have to get there for the start of the race. Visit the start areas so you are familiar with how to get there from the T- Zone.
  8. Take a look at the first section of each of the race courses. 
  9. Leave lots of time for that pre-race pee, conversation with others, a warm up, and the pre-race announcements over the P. A.
  10. Be at the race start 10 minutes before start time. This will ensure that there are no miscues.

the race
Once the race starts, things pretty much become a blur. Triathletes who are not strong swimmers should start at the back of their swim group. It can get pretty hectic. The same goes for duathletes at the run start. Only line up at the front if you expect to be out there in the lead.

Some things to think about during the race:

  1. Swim cap (provided) must be worn in the swim.
  2. Cyclists must wear a helmet with chin strap fastened before leaving the T-Zone and while on the bike.
  3. Bikes must be walked or run to and from the Mount/Dismount Line outside the T-Zone.
  4. Cyclists must mount, and stop/dismount only at the Mount/Dismount Line
  5. Competitor's number must be worn on the front during the run and on the back during the cycle.
  6. Competitors must wear a shirt (top) during the run and cycle.
  7. Cyclists may not draft behind another cyclist.
  8. Cyclists may not cross the centre line of the road during the race. This will result in automatic disqualification.
  9. Competitors must obey and treat officials with respect during the race.

Be sure your bib is on the front of your shirt when you cross the finish line, to receive your official time. Return your Championchip timing band after crossing the finish line, to avoid the bill for it. Enjoy your well-earned finishers’ medal and post-event refreshments.

results, award ceremony
Results will be posted shortly after you finish – listen to race day announcements to find out where. If you see problems with your time, placement, name spelling, category, etc, visit the Sportstats Timing Van near the finish line and they can help fix this asap for awards to be presented accurately.

The awards are presented as soon as possible after each race. Be sure to stick around for them if you want your place medal "Lanyard" for finishing in the top 3 in your category (otherwise, you can visit the website to find out how to mail in for your lanyard.

The Draw Prize list will be posted on the results board as well.

t-zone clean up
Please be respectful of other participants space and belongings.
T-zone space is 6/bicycle rack.

Please do not move another participants’ belongings.

Please treat the event site and course as you would ‘your home’.  Keep your garbage to a minimum and use the waste bins located around the site and at the aid stations.

Kindly remove your belongings from the T-Zone as soon as possible after the race

when you get home
You can visit our Web site at to view or print out the results of the race. Hopefully it was an enjoyable day and you will come back to try it again soon!

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