Kids triathlon Saturday

Area youth are getting geared up for the Ridgway YMCA Kids Triathlon scheduled for Saturday at 11 a.m. at the popular North Broad Street facility."We added a new division this year, a team division," said Mary Lynne Bellotti, Ridgway YMCA executive director. "With three kids on a team, one will swim, one will bike and one will run. We're excited about that change and I think it is a great event for the kids. "Each child goes home with a participant ribbon and a whole lot of memories."The order of events will be swim, bike, and run. Just outside the back door of the pool will be an area for drying feet, and putting on socks and shoes. Each triathlete will select a space in the transition area for their bike and other gear. The transition area will be located in the parking lot behind the Ridgway Armory. Parents may not physically assist their children during the race.The swim will be lap swimming in the Ridgway YMCA pool, which is 15 yards long. One lap equals 30 yards and heats of four swimmers will be held at 6-minute intervals. The first heat will start at 11 a.m., the second heat at 11:06 a.m., the third heat at 11:12 a.m., and so forth. Heats will begin with the youngest age group and end with the team swimmers. All triathletes must be able to safely and independently complete their swim distance. Following the swim, triathletes will exit the pool area through the back door and proceed to the transition area.The bike course will be on flat streets near the transition area. A hard-shell helmet is required for the bike portion of the race. Training wheels are permitted. Each triathlete must return his or her bike to their selected space in the transition area before starting the run. Bikes must be walked through the transition area.The run course will be on flat streets near the transition area and the finish line will be at the transition area.In the new team division, each team will consist of three individuals: a swimmer, a biker, and a runner. An individual may compete in an age group and as a member of a team if the wish, but must pay for both events and will receive only one T-shirt. Team members may be any ages between 5 and 12.For more information, call the Ridgway YMCA at 776-1146.