Unofficial Lazy Triathlon

Multisport Without The Effort

Get involved in the ‘Unofficial Lazy Triathlon’ at this year’s Port Alfred Easter Festival.

March and April are active times on the southern tip of Africa. It is the month of the famed Cape Town Cycle Tour (that bike race that everyone still affectionately but incorrectly refers to as ‘The Argus), and in the last week of March, the world’s toughest mountain bike stage race, the Absa Cape Epic dominates the calendar. There are smaller triathlons (such as the Woolworths XTRI)and running races. Then, in April, it is the iconic Two Oceans Marathon. Now, encouraging people to get outside and enjoy the beauty of Port Alfred, as well as the rewards of an active lifestyle, is what we’re all about! But we’re not all about endurance and race-to-exhaustion. In that vein, we’ve put together something of an ‘Unofficial Lazy Triathlon’ on the morning of Saturday 30 March. Here is what you need to know: 

EVENT 1: Port Alfred parkrun

8am, Causeway Street, Port Alfred

Now, if you’re new to lacing up your takkies and have been dozing on the couch for the past decade, here is a brief background of the phenomenon that is the ‘free for everyone, forever.’ 

Parkrun started as a ‘weekly run’ in October 2004 in a park in Teddington in the United Kingdom. Paul Sinton-Hewitt was suffering from a training injury, which meant he couldn’t do much mileage. Instead of moping, he decided to ‘give something back’ by organising a free, fun weekly run to stay in touch with running and the community. The story goes that the man (originally from Potchefstroom) bought a bunch of steel tokens from Halfords, stamped them with numbers, and sat in a coffee shop nearby, typing up the results after each race. About a dozen runners showed up for the first few.

Today, all events are still organised by volunteers and are entirely free, as explained by Bruce Fordyce, the nine-time Comrades champion who leads parkrun in SA. Fordyce received an invitation to a parkrun the day before the 2011 London Marathon. In November of that year, the inaugural South African parkrun took place in Delta Park, Johannesburg. Fordyce reflects on the 50th anniversary of Saturn V’s launch in the same year and reportedly emailed the editor of Runner’s World magazine, referencing the launch of parkrun in SA and worldwide, stating, ‘Saturn V is about to take off.’

And take off it did. As with all the other parkruns, at the Port Alfred Easter parkrun, you can run, walk, sprint, or ramble. If you’re in it for the ‘lazy tri’ make sure you’ve done your 5 kay and rested ahead of the bike ride at 10:00.

EVENT 2: Cycle Asylum Fun Ride 

The Cycle Asylum 10km is a social ‘coffee ride’ open to all fitness levels. The route will take in some of Port Alfred’s best sights and promises a great vibe. According to the organisers, the route will feature a mixture of tar and dirt roads with a few climbs. No helmet, no ride, and you must be over 16 to be eligible. The event finishes at 11:30, giving you enough time to ‘transition’ to the swim.  

EVENT 3: Sports n All Marina Easter Swim

Halyards Hotel, 12:00

This 1km open water swim through a course in the marina has a R7500 price purse per race and will take place. It is a low-tide swim. This means that you will never be battling the tide but also not have the full advantage of surfing with it, as the course allows for more of a cross-tide swim rather than directly with or against the tide.

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