Friday, November 1, 2013

Crush Winthrop Harbor

As a nod to all of us ChiTriBloggers and my tri team, wanted to feature a new race coming to the Chicagoland area in 2014!  I asked the RD, Jeremy Brizzi, to share a few things about the race and why we should check it out!

CRUSH WINTHROP HARBOR -AUG 3, 2014 (Chicagoland Area)

Why Winthrop Harbor?

Winthrop Harbor as a community is fully supportive of the event and is welcoming us with open arms.  The village voted unanimously to the bring Crush Race Series to their town.  In response they are sending unparalleled EMS support and police to support the event, including a FEMA Command Center, Flight for Life, Air One, and more.  Athletes will be safe.  The Marina is gorgeous, water is clean, roads are fast, smooth, and the Illinois State Park Forest Preserve where half of the run will be is on crushed limestone trails widely known for their scenic beauty.  This event, run along the lakefront, and along the Wisconsin border will be as visually stimulating as it will be safe and fun.  

What does Winthrop Harbor have to offer?  

Chicago based athletes and spectators can take the Metra to only 3/4 of a mile from the starting line.  The race is being tied in to Winthrop Harbor's Harbor Days Festival.  More than 20,000 people flock to the area for the weekend's events, including a Venetian night fireworks display on Saturday evening, live music throughout the weekend, an in water boat show on Saturday, and a variety of family activities.  A pet friendly festival, athletes can bring their dogs and try out the dog agility course that is tied in to a competition.  There is also a miniature car race track up the street.  Winthrop Harbor borders Zion and Gurnee, so families will be only a short drive from Great America, the Arboretum, Milwaukee, Chicago, or Ravinia Park.  The nature preserve is beautiful and offers families a nice place to visit, picnic, and do things like bird watching.  

What will the course be like?

Sprint or Olympic distances are being offered.  Sprint participants will complete one loop and Olympic participants two.  The swim will be an open water wave beach start in Lake Michigan and last year was listed as one of the top-ten cleanest beaches. Olympic athletes will offer spectators two opportunities to be seen when they exit the water and run along the beach to begin their second loop.  The bike course is fast, gentle rolling, clean roads, where athletes will have an entire lane separated from traffic to ride on.  The run course will be pancake flat and split between road and crushed limestone trails.  The pavement portion runs along the lake and is breathtakingly beautiful.  All Crush races are USAT Sanctioned and Officiated.  

Will there be an expo?

Yes and we are very excited to offer something more than just a packet pickup.  Crush Multisport will be hosting a Health & Wellness expo, Packet Pickup, and Pre-Race dinner with informational clinics and key speakers.  For information on being a vendor at the expo or post race festival, please see our contact information at the bottom of this document. 

What make a Crush Race different from any other race?

The Crush Race Series is partnered with More Than Sport and is a More Than Sport certified event.  This means that our focus, in addition to providing a quality event, is on giving back.  Through More Than Sport, Crush will use 75% of the events profits to help create and improve community programs, while supporting charities, including Team RWB, Hope To Give, Backpacks 4 Class, Medals 4 Mettle, and the Warm Belly Project.  There will be several opportunities to give including backpack, school supplies, clothing, and a food drive.  We are also focused on ensuring our events stay green, provide best in class products like Sweatvac shirts, Infinit as the course nutrition, and Get A Grip as the race's mechanic.  Dr. Tom Lotus, a renown Physiotherapist, and his team will also be providing athlete services after the event.  

Every Crush race will offer Team Challenge format racing in the model of Leon's Triathlon which includes the SUP option.  This means that coaches, charities, clubs, foundations, organizations, and groups of friends can get together and race as a team.  Teams must have at least five athletes and no more than ten, though you can have multiple teams.  Teams will complete against other teams, with the first five finishers total time equating to the team score.  This is not a relay, but relay are available.  Team Challenge athletes will complete the entire course individually, but their efforts will be compiled into a team time.  There is nothing else like the experience in the sport.  The energy and camaraderie has to be experienced to be appreciated in full.

It is also our goal as well to offer clubs and professional athletes an opportunity to compete for money.  This will all come down to sponsorship, but we hope to provide athletes and clubs a series of events where they take home enough to make a difference.  Far too many races run away with the profits and do not pay professional athletes enough for their effort.  Crush wants to change that and improve the sport.

Equally as important is not overcharging the athletes.  Triathlon is expensive enough.  Our races are priced fairly so that athletes can afford to enjoy the weekend without breaking the bank.  At nearly half the price of other comparable events in the area, Winthrop Harbor is focused on quality and giving athletes a home in Crush!

The North Point Triathlon will not only allow athletes an opportunity to Crush Winthrop Harbor, but a full schedule of festivities before and after the event make it unique, exciting, and family friendly.  

How do we register, sponsor, or obtain more information about the event?  

Visit the Crush Website at or contact us at or and we will be able to answer any of your questions.

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