Triathlon registrations lagging

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The future of the Spirit of Westlock Triathlon is in doubt after early bird registration fell short of the town’s target.

Community services co-ordinator Travis Darling says only 33 people have signed up, just under half of the needed minimum to put on the June 10 event. Last year’s triathlon was shelved due to the town’s 100-year celebrations.

“It’s kind of on the same target as last year,” he said. “We need roughly about 70-80 people registered, as a team or individual.”

This year’s triathlon is competing with several others happening at roughly the same time, which may be limiting registrants.

“After seeing what the provincial schedule looks like, I’m not sure just how big the sport is,” he said.

“This event really relies on outside participation. Just with the number of actual events, overall participation is down. Everyone has everything to go to, it seems.”

It’s now crunch time for the triathlon organizers as Darling said the organizing committee needs to make a final decision by month’s end.

“We’re kind of in the grace period right now,” he said. “If we make a decision sooner, we’re not on the hook for as much in expenses as we would be if we get closer to the date.

“The closer we get, I have to start purchasing supplies, putting deposits on services needed at the event and so on.

“As we get to the point where I have no choice but to get these things done to run a good event, we’ll need to make that decision about what is actually feasible.”

Darling said they don’t necessarily need to have 70 registered by the end of April, just some sort of indication that they’ll be close to that number come June 10.

“Just because I don’t have a full registration doesn’t mean that I will cancel it,” he said. “We know some people are training for it but haven’t registered yet for whatever reason.

“We’ll look at every aspect of it before we make a decision either way. I would really love to have this as a functioning event, but we need to also be logical about the situation as well.”

Registration for the event can be done at the town’s website.

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