Myrtle Beach Triathlon - WMBFNews.com, Myrtle Beach/Florence SC, Weather

Myrtle Beach Triathlon

© WMBF News Reporter Will Whitson © WMBF News Reporter Will Whitson

MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) The USA National Triathlon Championship Festival once again brought 1,400 competitors to Myrtle Beach this weekend.

Road and lanes were closed for a majority of Saturday morning as participants in the Myrtle Beach Triathlon ran, swam and biked through the City of Myrtle Beach as part of the USA National Triathlon Championship. The event began at the Marina Inn in Grande Dunes with a 1.2 mile swim in the Intracoastal Waterway, followed by a 56 mile bike ride on US 17, Grissom Parkway and SC 31. The event concluded with a half-marathon on US 17.

Sunday's events are much smaller and will not cause any road or lane closures on US 17 or SC 31.

Last year, the City of Myrtle Beach said over 5,000 people were in the area for the event. The festival brought almost half a million dollars last year, an amount the city expects to reach and exceed this year.

The triathlon was only a one day event last year. Officials with USA Triathlon say that extending the event by an extra day will keep competitors, spectators, and vendors in the Grand Strand a little longer this go around, which can generate more tourism revenue. Organizers say hosting the competition in Myrtle Beach draws a larger crowd due to the pleasant climate and amenities.

"It's got beautiful sunshine and has a lot to offer our racers," said Tim Yount of USA Triathlon. "It helps our numbers a lot and makes for a great excuse to take a vacation."

Copyright 2011 WMBF News. All rights reserved.

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