The second Craig Duathlon will take place at 8 a.m. Sunday at Loudy-Simpson Park, 500 S. Ranney St. Race director Jim Gregoire said he expects about 50 athletes to compete in the duathlon, which consists of a 5K run, 30K bike ride, and another 5K run.

File photo

The second Craig Duathlon will take place at 8 a.m. Sunday at Loudy-Simpson Park, 500 S. Ranney St. Race director Jim Gregoire said he expects about 50 athletes to compete in the duathlon, which consists of a 5K run, 30K bike ride, and another 5K run.

Athletes gearing up for second year of Craig Duathlon

If you go …

What: Second Craig Duathlon

When: 8 a.m. Sunday

Where: Loudy-Simpson Park, 500 S. Ranney St.

— Registration costs $55 for individuals and $75 for a two-person team.

For more information on the Craig Duathlon or to register, visit www.runningseries.com.

The Craig Duathlon’s trial run last year to see how it would fit into the well-known Steamboat Springs Running Series seems to have panned out.

The local duathlon was added to the Running Series’ 2011 schedule and will take at 8 a.m. Sunday starting at Loudy-Simpson Park, 500 S. Ranney St.

“The Steamboat Running Series is a demanding schedule and it has a nationwide reputation,” Craig race director Jim Gregoire said. “Other towns have tried to get on the schedule and failed, so we sweated it out and were pleased to be back for a second year.”

The duathlon, which consists of a 5K run, 30K bike ride and another 5K run, offers something for everyone, Gregoire said.

“A lot of people want to do something along the lines of a triathlon, but don’t like to swim long distances,” he said. “I am one of them that doesn’t like to swim, so I have competed in 20 duathlons in the past 10 years. They are a nice alternative from the normal all-running races.”

Due to flooding at Loudy-Simpson over the past few weeks, Gregoire said he had to change the running course slightly, but it will not impact the athletes.

The 30K bike ride, or about 18 miles of biking, will start on Water Plant Road, continue on Colorado Highway 13 and First Street before coming full loop back at Loudy-Simpson Park. Riders will complete two loops before the final 5K.

Gregoire said of all the duathlons he has competed in, the biking portion in Craig is one of the toughest.

“There is a perfect balance of climbing, downhill and flat riding, but the first hill is tough,” he said. “The riders have to climb for about half a mile and it is hard. But, the scenery while they ride is great. It is a pretty course.”

As of Tuesday afternoon, Gregoire said the race had 32 athletes registered, but he is hoping for around 50 competitors.

Athletes can register as an individual for $55 or two-person teams can register for $75.

Gregoire said the option to compete as a team, where one person completes both running sections and the other the biking, helps the Craig Duathlon stand out.

“There are people who want to compete in events like this, but maybe aren’t runners or bikers,” he said. “If they compete in one section, maybe next year they do the whole thing. It opens up options to all athletes.”

Laura Brewer, a Craig resident, said she would team up with fellow Craig resident John Kinkaid for the duathlon. Brewer will handle the biking portion while Kinkaid competes in the two running sections.

“I have never met John, but I asked Jim if there was someone who I could partner up with,” Brewer said. “Neither of us are in this to compete, we just want to challenge ourselves and see if we can finish.”

Athletes can pick up their packets starting at 7 a.m. Sunday. A limited number of race-day registrations will be allowed.

All athletes who pre-register at www.runningseries.com will receive a long sleeve, dry tech shirt.

Backcountry Provisions will provide food for the runners.

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