On the morning of the Fourth of July, Arlington celebrated with one of its longest standing traditions, the Pedal, Paddle, Puff Triathlon. Alongside the competitive race, waves of people also came together to run the Foam 5K.
The festivities were kicked off by the Pedal, Paddle, Puff Triathlon at 9 a.m., as the race transitioned back to its original bike, kayak and run format. There were even more changes to the race this year as the Arlington Runners Club decided to extend the course with a 7.8-mile biking portion, a 6-mile route down the Stilly River, and the customary 3.1-mile run down Eagle Trail.
An hour after the start of the triathlon, the Foam 5K began as participants poured out of the foam wall surrounding the starting line. Competitors of all ages took part in the foam-filled fun as everyone from babies in strollers up to runners in their 60s took off down Eagle Trail.
“This whole thing grows every year because we are able to engage more people. Just by looking around you can see how this community comes together to put on an incredible event where everyone gets to have some fun. It’s crucial to have these volunteers from the community or we wouldn’t be able to do all of this,” said Arlington Runners Club President Devin Brossard.
The top three male finishers in the triathlon were Jacob Gervais, Benjamin Van Zuiden and Jake Webb. Gervais, 19, was the youngest to race in the Iron Man Division as he took the first-place plaque with a time of 2:39.26. Van Zuiden, 32, and Webb, 31, crossed the finish line about 20 minutes later as they took second and third place with times of 2:54.57 and 2:56.46, respectively.
Kristina Longosky, 27, finished in fourth place overall for the Iron Man Division, and also took first place as the only female competitor in the division. She finished with a final time of 2:58.34.
“If you’re not getting stronger, then you’re getting weaker. This gives people the opportunity to train for something and make themselves better in the long run,” said Brossard.
If you want to see the full results of the triathlon or want to learn about future events, you can check out the Arlington Runners Club's Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/ARC98223/.