Milwaukee will play host to not one but two major triathlon events on the same weekend this summer.
The London-based Professional Triathletes Organisation
announced this week that the PTO US Open will take place Aug. 4-5 on Milwaukee's lakefront, alongside the previously announced USA Triathlon Age Group National Championships
and Youth and Junior Nationals, Aug. 3-6.
Together, the events will draw 7,580 participants and 15,000 spectators, generating an estimated economic impact of $9.5 million, according to VISIT Milwaukee,
It'll be the third straight year
that Milwaukee hosts USA Triathlon
's marquee national championship event and its first year hosting the PTO US Open. Last year's PTO Open was held in Dallas.
"This triathlon festival will showcase one of the things that makes our sport both unique and great – athletes ages 7 to 87, age group and professional, from all over the U.S. and around the globe, racing at the same venue over the same weekend and we look forward to celebrating our multisport community with so many," said Tim Yount, chief sport development officer for USA Triathlon.
The PTO is a new athlete-owned entity that aims to "elevate and grow the sport of Triathlon and take it to the next level," according to the organization's website. In its first season, the PTO US Open was part of a three-race PTO Tour that amassed a global dedicated TV and streaming audience of 23.1 million through multiple broadcast partnerships; 125 million impressions and 29 million social media video views of its award-winning, internally produced shoulder content.
The influx of visitors, plus the exposure driven by live coverage "will deliver economic impact to the community while raising the profile of Milwaukee as a premier sports destination in front of millions of broadcast and digital viewers," said Marissa Werner, director of Sports Milwaukee, VISIT Milwaukee's sports division.
"We absolutely love hosting triathletes and their families and it’s clear they love Milwaukee, too. We can’t wait to welcome them in August for their events," said Werner.
The main venue for the events will be adjacent to the Milwaukee Art Museum, Henry Maier Festival Park and Discovery World along the shore of Lake Michigan. Athletes will swim in Lake Michigan. The bike course will traverse Lincoln Memorial Drive, the Hoan Bridge and the Lake Freeway, which will be closed to traffic during the event. The running course will be along Lake Michigan on paved trails through Veterans Park, returning on Lincoln Memorial Drive.
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Athletes spring toward the finish line during the 2021 USA Triathlon Age Group National Championships in Milwaukee.[/caption]