The YWCA Women’s Triathlon is the largest outdoor women-only tri in the country. More than 1,300 triathletes, aged 11-80, participate in this unique community event to celebrate the strength in all women.
Voted Minnesota’s Favorite Race of the Year in 2012 and 2017, we offer a welcoming experience for everyone. Triathletes can train and race together with friends, family, and colleagues in a “Buddy Group,” compete as a family team with their mother, daughter, sister, or life partner; and cross the finish line with loved ones in our “Friends & Family Finish Zone.” Over 35% of our athletes are first-timers, and returning athletes are eligible to compete for the coveted Toni St. Pierre “Most Improved” Award.
The YWCA Women’s Triathlon starts with a swim in popular Lake Nokomis, bikes the parkway roads along the bluffs of the Mississippi river and finishes with a flat run on the paths around Lake Nokomis. Two distance options include the Sprint (500yd swim/15.5mi bike/5K run) and the SuperSprint (200yd swim/7mi bike/1mi run).
Sprint Course Information
The swim is a 500-yard, clockwise triangle, beginning to the left of the public swim area. The swim start will be in waves of approximately 50-75 participants, three minutes apart. Beach start (start by standing on the sand). You must pass the large corner buoys on the left (keep the buoys to the right), except for the final buoy on the beach. We will have several kiddie pools after the beach en route to the transition area, where you can rinse sand off your feet. Wetsuits will be allowed (and encouraged) per USAT rules and regulations. All swimmers will be given a swim cap they must wear during the swim leg of the triathlon.
In the transition area, racks are assigned with a number range. You may be anywhere on the rack that includes your number in its number range (i.e. if you are number 14, you will be on the rack with the 13-24 number range). The racks will generally be arranged by age groups, except that the buddy waves will have their racks together (number ranges still apply). Elite and Relays will also have a separate area. Hang your bike by the brake levers or seat. The wheel down side is your side of the rack. You may bring balloons or other items to mark your spot but they must not interfere with other participants or block athletes' flow through the transition area.
The bike course shows off much of what makes the Twin Cities special, passing around Lake Nokomis, following Minnehaha Parkway and circling both sides of the Mississippi River. The 5k (3.1 mile) run circles Lake Nokomis counter-clockwise. It includes the lagoon west of Cedar Bridge and a short out-and-back along Cedar Bridge, after reaching the one-mile mark. Please see the link below for a map and description of both the 15.5-mile bike and the 3.1-mile run.
Both the bike and run course include amazing views across the lake toward the beach and downtown Minneapolis!