ASU, Tempe to host 2017 Women's Triathlon Collegiate National Championship

Sun Devil Athletics won its bid to host the 2017 National Championship on home turf

The national champion ASU women's triathlon team will have the opportunity to defend its title this coming season on familiar turf.

Sun Devil Athletics announced Wednesday it will be hosting the 2017 Triathlon Collegiate National Championship on Nov. 5, 2017 in Tempe. ASU won last year's National Championship in its first season competing as a varsity sport.

“It is an honor for Arizona State University to serve as host of the 2017 Triathlon National Championship in Tempe,” ASU Vice President of University Athletics Ray Anderson said in the release. "Arizona State sees itself as an ambassador for the emerging sport of women's triathlon and will use the opportunity to host the 2017 National Championships as a platform to introduce and educate other NCAA member institutions on the collegiate model of the sport."

The event, which consists of a 750-meter swim, 20K bike and 5K run, will take place at Tempe Town Lake. The location has played host for the Ironman Arizona Triathlon for over 10 years, along with various other similar events.

"There is no better location to hold a triathlon competition than Tempe," the city's mayor Mark Mitchell said. "On average, Tempe hosts over a dozen multi-sport competitions a year, in addition to various marathons and races, which have provided the city with a blueprint for how to best manage large-scale race events. Tempe is a city I am proud to call home and we look forward to making all involved with the event equally as proud."

The spectator-friendly course will feature 4.37-mile bike course that will trail through downtown Tempe, Mill Bridge and Papago Park. The running course will total 1.53 miles and will run along the lake on the boardwalk, while the swim course will take place in the lake.

Earning the bid is just another impressive accomplishment for the triathlon team. The Sun Devils took the team competition at the 2016 National Championships, with three of the top seven finishers racing for ASU. 

Head coach Cliff English, who applied for the bid to host the event, said his goals are still long term. He wants ASU to spearhead the effort to grow the sport.

“I am thrilled we are able to play a part in growing the sport of triathlon through our actions at ASU, and hosting nationals will allow us to showcase these incredible young women as they compete on a truly world-class course at Tempe Town Lake," English said. 

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