CHRISTUS Trinity Mother Frances Rose City Triathlon returns after pandemic hiatus

One athlete breaks course record
Published: Sep. 12, 2021 at 6:43 PM CDT
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TYLER, Texas (KLTV) - Athletes from all over came out for the CHRISTUS Trinity Mother Frances Rose City Triathlon at Lake Tyler this morning. It was the first time back after the race was canceled last year due to COVID-19 concerns, and one athlete broke the course record.

As the sun rose over the lake, men and women of all levels took to the waters on Lake Tyler for a 650-meter swim. Jonathan Johnson, the race director, said this is a sprint triathlon, which is a 650-meter swim, a 13-mile bike, and a 3.1-mile run.

“We’re super excited to be able to put on the race today because in triathlons many people train, and your goal is to actually compete in a race, and unfortunately it was canceled last year,” Johnson said. “So we’re just excited for the community, the local people, to be able to come out and show off their hard work that they’ve put in all year.”

Garrett Mayeaux is the 2021 champion with a time of 57:43, a course record here in Tyler.

He went to one race last year and, “Then the rest of the season got canceled as soon as COVID hit. So I was pretty bummed and I didn’t really know what to do,” he said. “Then finally it really let up and races were looking like they were really going to happen. I got back into a good training groove around the end of last year, November, December time, and have been training pretty good through then.”

Mayeaux said he enjoyed the course and the way the staff treats athletes.

“This is a big goal of mine. I’ve gotten second here multiple times, so to come and get first is really big for me,” Mayeaux said.

Friends Jamie Kirby and Carrie Cowan took on their first Rose City triathlon. Kirby said the two have been training together and decided about a month ago to participate.

“What are we waiting for? Time’s getting short as we get older and why not? We’ve always wanted to do a tri, and it’s so much more fun to do with friends,” Kirby said.

Athletes finished the swim, ran to a transition zone, and got on the bike for a 13-mile ride. Kirby and Cowan both said they were a little nervous to start, but once they got in the water the nerves went away.

“I’m doing this for my family, too, and just showing my kids that when you push through hard things, you can still do it. And just because something isn’t easy doesn’t mean you shouldn’t do it. To show them and everybody else that you can accomplish hard stuff,” Kirby said.

“It was so special. We both worked so hard. We held hands, finished strong. Trained together, finished together, it was awesome,” the two said.

This year’s race was capped at 250 athletes, and they were spaced out in waves, so the transition zone would be less crowded.

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