Athlone was a sporting hive of activity on Sunday last as a wealth of athletes descended upon the Midlands town to participate in TriAthlone 2019.
Beneath glorious blue skies, in excess of 700 participants, competing in sprint, super sprint and olympic categories tested their sporting abilities as they swam, cycled and ran various distances with the achievement of crossing the finish line on the blue carpet uppermost in their minds.
Supporters too were noticeable by their high number with the local community appreciating the efforts of all the participants as they proved their sporting worth in the various race disciplines.
Speaking to the ATHLONE ADVERTISER following the conclusion of TriAthlone 2019, race organiser, Willie O'Reilly, commended the sporting toil of all participants, paying particular reference to the large numbers who gave of their Sunday time to support the perennially popular event.
"TriAthlone 2019 was a huge success and with the clement weather proved to be one of the most successful events we have hosted to date. Over 700 athletes, including individual competitors and relay teams, all of whom crossed the finished line without cause for major concern, appreciated the support, received along the course route with children dotting the roadsides as they encouraged the participants offering 'high fives' as they passed," Willie enthused.
Willie also noted the dedicated work of the TriAthlone 2019 volunteers, many of whom who have given of their time each year to marshal at the event.
"As noted, all participants crossed the line as they started and that was due to the work of the course marshals who encouraged the athletes at times of low ebb along the route, while providing them with much needed refreshments as the fatigue set in," Willie added.
The event sponsors were also lauded, the financial support from whom allow Triathlone to take place each year. Sponsors of the event included Hodson Bay Hotel, Sheraton Hotel Athlone, Shamrock Lodge Hotel, Prince of Wales Hotel, Planalife, Westmeath County Council, Roscommon County Council, DBC Physiotherapy, Heinken 0.0, Born Nutrition, Henshaw Eyewear, Colm Quinn BMW and Super Valu Monksland.
A party atmosphere was prevalent along the course finish area to the rear of Athlone Castle, as supporters gathered to cheer in unison family members and friends with the race conclusion in sight, the participants' sense of achievement about to be fulfilled.
A wholly triumphant sporting occasion, thoughts now turn towards TriAthlone 2020 and the promise of atmospheric sporting flavour in the heart of Ireland.