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New Race In Niagara Falls Canada
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Last week I had the opportunity to go down to Niagara Falls to check out the race venue for a new race that will be starting up in September 2014.

The race, a 1/2 iron distance is being produced by, MultiSport Canada who put on the biggest and best triathlon series in Canada with a series of events throughout Southern Ontario.

See more here:

http://niagarafallstriathlon.com/

Swim in the Welland Canal (like a big pool), mostly flat bike, then an awesome 2-lap run that takes in the best sites and scenery right in Niagara Falls, Canada. You'll pass right by the brink of the Falls and if the wind is blowing the right way, you'll get a free cooling mist directly from the Falls!

I've been to lots of races, race sites, and venues over the years and this one is really good.


Steve Fleck @stevefleck | Blog
Last edited by: Fleck: Apr 30, 13 12:59
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [Fleck] [ In reply to ]
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MSC/John:

This is great news for everyone!

But for my selfish reasons: ...please please have a real half-iron duathlon option (or at least a bike-run option...)! :D

.


Duathlete by choice?
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [Fleck] [ In reply to ]
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Steve....question to you and John.....why the desire for a "flat and fast" course when you are that close to the Niagara escarpment. Seems like there is an opportunity to give the course some character and additional challenge beyond a flat and fast draft fest to T2. I can see where you have no terrain to select from that you may need to go flat, but if other terrain is available, seems like a lost opportunity? Or perhaps there is no access to good climbing on the bike?
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [devashish_paul] [ In reply to ]
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I think that it may be in part due to:

1.) Half the bike course they suggested is part of the Welland Half anyway, where they have the support of the community and easier to get permits/costs in line with their budgets.
2.) Allure factor of having a point to point T2 so that most of the bike and nearly all the run part is next to Niagara Falls, which makes it a big draw for everyone. (while maintaining 1.))
3.) I suspect a lot more athletes sign up when they see a flat and fast PR course, just because it sells. A harder bike is a better judge of ability + reducing drafting, but mostly people sign up just to be able to compete and finish.

..but I may be just talking out of my ass.

.


Duathlete by choice?
http://parigari.blogspot.ca/
http://www.3sixty5cycling.com/ Ask me for a $50 discount on 3SIXTY5 Wheels!
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [blitzkrieg] [ In reply to ]
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blitzkrieg wrote:
I think that it may be in part due to:

1.) Half the bike course they suggested is part of the Welland Half anyway, where they have the support of the community and easier to get permits/costs in line with their budgets.
2.) Allure factor of having a point to point T2 so that most of the bike and nearly all the run part is next to Niagara Falls, which makes it a big draw for everyone. (while maintaining 1.))
3.) I suspect a lot more athletes sign up when they see a flat and fast PR course, just because it sells. A harder bike is a better judge of ability + reducing drafting, but mostly people sign up just to be able to compete and finish.

..but I may be just talking out of my ass.

.

In general the part in bold is what running race directors market... "flat and fast". That is great for a running race, but in general, it becomes problematic in a triathlon. I can see having no other choice if your event is Eagleman, or IM Florida, but ideally, if some rollers and hills are there, it makes the TRIATHLON a better overall event. We could debate that hard courses scare athletes, away, but then how do we explain sellouts at Wildflower?

I hope it had more to do with permits than marketing a draft fest to athletes.
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [Fleck] [ In reply to ]
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Looks to me like they could have made the course a LOT better if they extended it down Netherby and then had you finish the last few km on the Niagara Parkway - I used to love riding out there as a kid.
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [Fleck] [ In reply to ]
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I love the idea of another Ontario triathlon and there is some appeal here but I agree with everyone else. The bike could easily be more challenging and the point to point nature is not very friendly to athletes or spectators no matter how well you bus them around. The volunteers and transportation at Ironman Poconos 70.3 the last few years was great but it was still difficult for spectators to get around and getting all that gear and/or people back to their vehicles in Welland (or get people from Niagara Falls to Welland for the start) will be a challenge.

That said the run/finish will be spectacular, it was/is a great finish to the Conquer Cancer ride. Enough to forgive the other issues and there is lots for spectators to do there while they wait for their athletes to get to the run.


Rodney
TrainingPeaks | Altra Running | RAD Roller
http://www.goinglong.ca
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [Fleck] [ In reply to ]
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I lived in Ontario for years. For some reason there have always been awesome races there.

Flat fast courses do attract people, but the Rotorua 1/2 IM here in New Zealand is killer tough, and they still get about 1000 entrants. The only part without monster hills is the swim :-)

TriDork

"Happiness is a myth. All you can hope for is to get laid once in a while, drunk once in a while and to eat chocolate every day"
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [Fleck] [ In reply to ]
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Clearly they're new at this, what with naming their event "Half Iron" and all. That or they have lawyers and are ready for a fight.
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [kny] [ In reply to ]
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kny wrote:
Clearly they're new at this

Yup, John Salt is a total noob

/pink


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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [Jamaican] [ In reply to ]
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Well, let's see whether it's name remains "Niagara Falls Half Iron" next September.
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [kny] [ In reply to ]
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Who knows. Maybe they'll have it as the Niagara Half Iron Distance like Welland: http://www.msctriathlon.com/...etail.cfm?raceID=469


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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [Jamaican] [ In reply to ]
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You win.
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [tridork] [ In reply to ]
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tridork wrote:
I lived in Ontario for years. For some reason there have always been awesome races there.

Flat fast courses do attract people, but the Rotorua 1/2 IM here in New Zealand is killer tough, and they still get about 1000 entrants. The only part without monster hills is the swim :-)

------

That is because people down under aren't girlie-men...;-)

----
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [devashish_paul] [ In reply to ]
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Dev,

A couple of things:

I can see having no other choice if your event is Eagleman, or IM Florida, but ideally, if some rollers and hills are there, it makes the TRIATHLON a better overall event.

I would guess that the complicated nature of coming up with a course, to get all the elements, that need to be there, will mean that, to get it just right for that location you may need to make some compromises, or you have to work with what you have. Every course does not have to be epically challenging. If that is a key criteria for you or another athlete - the need to have a challenging bike course - then, you have choices of other races. That's the great thing right now - there is lot's of choice out there with events.

You know that a 6-hour race, no matter what the courses look like, is pretty darn challenging for many. Why can't it be left there?

I hope it had more to do with permits than marketing a draft fest to athletes.

"Draft fest"? I suspect that with the race numbers that this race will have (around 700) and wave starts, that this will be minimal.



Steve Fleck @stevefleck | Blog
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [blitzkrieg] [ In reply to ]
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Hey Blitzkrieg, glad you think it is great news, thanks. Actually we have built in a Bike/Run option. If we could have added a Du we would have but the logistics will not allow it. Hope we see you there.

John Salt, Founder - MultiSport Canada
Canada's Largest Triathlon Series
http://www.multisportcanada.com / http://www.niagarafallstriathlon.com
"Discipline Is What You Do When No One Is Watching You"
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [devashish_paul] [ In reply to ]
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Dev, why do you assume there is a "desire" on our part for a flat and fast course? Over the years we have had several very challenging bike courses for a half because we prefer to make it a tougher bike and it does break up the packs. If we could have done that for this race we would have. The reality is in order to end in the Falls we are limited as to where we can go. Unfortunately we cannot get to the higher elevations and to the Falls with a 90km route. Your later comment that perhaps there is no access is accurate. As Fleck just pointed out we will have waves to keep things safe at this race and to try and separate the bikes right from the start.

This is the only race that has been allowed to have a run course which goes by the Falls TWICE. All other races end just before the Falls. We have been working on this race for three years and the goal was to have the best bike course possible in order to get athletes to what we believe ill be an epic (and not flat) run course. I hope you join us on race day.

John Salt, Founder - MultiSport Canada
Canada's Largest Triathlon Series
http://www.multisportcanada.com / http://www.niagarafallstriathlon.com
"Discipline Is What You Do When No One Is Watching You"
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [IKnowEverything] [ In reply to ]
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Matt, I would love to take the bike along Netherby to the Parkway. I don't know when you were a kid but the present day vehicular traffic flow will not allow for that to be a safe option. Netherby is a busy road these days and as you get closer to the Parkway it goes by and crosses over an interchange from the QEW. I would not put our athlete/customers in that situation. I even doubt we could get authorization from the MTO and OPP. Sorry but it is a reality of the situation.

John Salt, Founder - MultiSport Canada
Canada's Largest Triathlon Series
http://www.multisportcanada.com / http://www.niagarafallstriathlon.com
"Discipline Is What You Do When No One Is Watching You"
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [rbuike] [ In reply to ]
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Rodney, for this race if athletes stay in Niagara Falls, with plenty of hotels at various price points, they can be shuttled to the race start in the morning, complete the race and be within 800m of the athlete parking or within walking distance to their hotel. They will also have the option of staying in Welland. The Best Western is 1km from the swim start. I know a point to point is a challenge for some athletes to get their mind around. All I can say is we have successfully produced two point to point long course races in Collingwood a few years back. The athlete reaction post-race was extremely positive and I can tell you we did not have one complaint. We are committed to making the point to point seamless and smooth.

We will also have spectator "hot spots" with directions so that they can get to see all of the race at key locations, not interfere with or impede the race and get back to the finish. Kingsbridge Park is a huge and beautiful park and will be a great place for friends and family to watch the Finish.

John Salt, Founder - MultiSport Canada
Canada's Largest Triathlon Series
http://www.multisportcanada.com / http://www.niagarafallstriathlon.com
"Discipline Is What You Do When No One Is Watching You"
Last edited by: John Salt: May 1, 13 6:04
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [John Salt] [ In reply to ]
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Thanks for the response John. Perhaps my Poconos experience wasn't great but it is a challenge to move that many people around. It is a huge organizational effort and I wish you the best of luck. I fully support any addition to the Ontario triathlon series.


Rodney
TrainingPeaks | Altra Running | RAD Roller
http://www.goinglong.ca
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [Fleck] [ In reply to ]
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I think this sounds great despite the naysayers thus far. Share more details as you get them please.
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [devashish_paul] [ In reply to ]
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devashish_paul wrote:
Steve....question to you and John.....why the desire for a "flat and fast" course when you are that close to the Niagara escarpment. Seems like there is an opportunity to give the course some character and additional challenge beyond a flat and fast draft fest to T2. I can see where you have no terrain to select from that you may need to go flat, but if other terrain is available, seems like a lost opportunity? Or perhaps there is no access to good climbing on the bike?

Dev- I get your point, but it's worth mentioning that this course is not a compromise for "flat and fast". Feeder Road is perfect for triathlon- shaded, smooth, low traffic and scenic.

Second, flat and fast is somewhat of a novelty in this area. The majority of people in the Niagara/Welland races will be local, and I can't think of another HIM or longer with such a flat course. We have a lot of (semi) hilly race options, this is a nice alternative.
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [kkoole] [ In reply to ]
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Thanks. I guess that was the angle I was coming from. Given that the area is generally challenging, as an outsider, you'd expect to go there to have a course that uses the topography. As I said, I am OK with run races being marketed as flat and fast. I'm not totally sold (not just for me, but for many participants) that the majority actually want a purely flat course for triathlon. Then again, numbers talk....IMFlorida and IM Arizona instantly sell out, whereas St. George never did. As you mentioned of the bulk of the participants are local, and if this is a novelty in terms of the only course that could be this flat, then I can see the point.

To John, I applaud you for all your contributions over time. My main angle was that as an outsider, making the trip would be worthwhile if it offered some unique usage of the local topography (escarpment). It's not really interesting for many of us to travel for a pancake flat course (the same reason I never have done Eagleman).

We have the Esprit with its unique F1 track and Canadian looping around the Canal and in the shadow of Parliament to fill the flat course offering up here. I appreciate that in that region these options are not there. Out of all of these, fall events, I like the course at Muskoka the best (nothing to do with it being Mdot....just worth the travel given the assurance that the race will not be a draft fest).

Anyway, not hiding that I'm a bit averse to the marketing of any triathlon as flat and fast. In today's market driven by WTC congested courses, I see this as code word for a a lot of drafting. Many athletes actually want to sign up for draft fests because they want PB's.

I hope you have great wave spacing and limit the size of waves and have good marshaling. The guys in Galveston Texas do a great job at that, and Danny McCann actually does a good job on this in Montreal. The Canadian is never big in numbers anyway and we can ride clean races there too. So it is possible for sure.
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [John Salt] [ In reply to ]
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John Salt wrote:
Dev, why do you assume there is a "desire" on our part for a flat and fast course? Over the years we have had several very challenging bike courses for a half because we prefer to make it a tougher bike and it does break up the packs. If we could have done that for this race we would have. The reality is in order to end in the Falls we are limited as to where we can go. Unfortunately we cannot get to the higher elevations and to the Falls with a 90km route. Your later comment that perhaps there is no access is accurate. As Fleck just pointed out we will have waves to keep things safe at this race and to try and separate the bikes right from the start.

This is the only race that has been allowed to have a run course which goes by the Falls TWICE. All other races end just before the Falls. We have been working on this race for three years and the goal was to have the best bike course possible in order to get athletes to what we believe ill be an epic (and not flat) run course. I hope you join us on race day.

John, also I wanted to thank you for being creative to take full advantage of the featuring the run course by the falls. That will certainly be interesting and would get many people to travel over for it. I definitely agree that it will be one of the most iconic races in Canada.....why not just go with "most iconic races in the World" vs. "fastest and most iconic races in Canada". I don't think you need "fastest" as part of the marketing. The Falls are the main feature as they should be. This is what differentiates your race. Any event can be fast.

Sep 21 could work. It just depends on work travel etc.

Dev
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [Fleck] [ In reply to ]
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I was disappointed to read that the swim was not in the shipping canal. THAT would have been exciting.
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [devashish_paul] [ In reply to ]
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Dev, I think the timing of this race is perfect. We do not need another Northeast half iron race in July or August. I am sure it will be a success and I certainly hope to be able to make it to the inaugural race.
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [johnnybefit] [ In reply to ]
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Thanks Johnny your positive comments are appreciated! I will provide updates. People can also sign up for the race newsletter if they like from the website, http://www.niagarafallstriathlon.com. The plan is to unveil more and more of the family activities and attractions that will make this a family experience, along with a great race. The website at this point is a "soft launch" to showcase the race courses and explain the point to point race. I expected that a few athletes would be a little leery of two transitions and am hoping that providing this key information and process upfront would alleviate concerns. As I said in an earlier post we have produced two transition races before and if you plan properly, from the perspective of the customer, they should not be that difficult for the athlete/customer.

John Salt, Founder - MultiSport Canada
Canada's Largest Triathlon Series
http://www.multisportcanada.com / http://www.niagarafallstriathlon.com
"Discipline Is What You Do When No One Is Watching You"
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [devashish_paul] [ In reply to ]
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Quote:
The Canadian is never big in numbers anyway and we can ride clean races there too.

...not so sure about that! I had at least 3-5 people drafting behind me at a lot of points in the 2 years I've done that Iron distance race. I wasnt particularly fast, but not spectacularly slow either...just goes to show that people from all abilities show up for that event.

I do wish the guys doing the Canadian get more publicity + organize for a longer race loop including the Ottawa River Parkway though.


Duathlete by choice?
http://parigari.blogspot.ca/
http://www.3sixty5cycling.com/ Ask me for a $50 discount on 3SIXTY5 Wheels!
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [devashish_paul] [ In reply to ]
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John, also I wanted to thank you for being creative to take full advantage of the featuring the run course by the falls. That will certainly be interesting and would get many people to travel over for it. I definitely agree that it will be one of the most iconic races in Canada.....why not just go with "most iconic races in the World" vs. "fastest and most iconic races in Canada". I don't think you need "fastest" as part of the marketing. The Falls are the main feature as they should be. This is what differentiates your race. Any event can be fast.

Dev,

Glad to see you have moderated your feelings on this. You need to get outside your box! :)

I had not been to Niagara Falls in years. For people in Southern Ontario, I think the Falls are an under-appreciated attraction. It's really impressive to see them up close and in person. In this race, you'll get to run right by them, and in particular the brink, of the Canadian Falls twice!!

When Europeans are asked to name North American places that they would most like to go and see, guess which place consistently finishes in the top-5?



Steve Fleck @stevefleck | Blog
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [John Salt] [ In reply to ]
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For those coming from the U.S - we need a passport for the race as well as plan time to cross border? Would you recommend staying on the Canadian side?
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [devashish_paul] [ In reply to ]
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Hey Dev, Thanks for the kind words. I do like your suggest of a tag line, "most iconic race in the world". We are actually still making decisions as it relates to brand. The goal for these first few months is to help athletes understand that a race with two transitions can work, be athlete friendly and also ensure that friends and family are part of the race experience. In the coming weeks and months we will unveil more pages on the website that are dedicated to those aspects and more such as accommodations, attractions etc..

I should also mention one aspect in the bike course design has been rail lines. We had looked at another bike course, suggested by a local pro, but there is a major rail line which cuts through the course. If you look at the area this is an issue which has to factor in course design. Unfortunately it looks like we are just not able to get specific train schedules to be sure a freight train does not come through the course on race day.

Having said that I would be happy to hear from anyone who has suggestions and ideas to make this a better race. It is another reason that we announced this 17 months out. We have a great course and have all aspects of the logistics nailed down. Our series has grown because we are focused on the customer, so Ideas that will help make this an even better experience are welcome.

John Salt, Founder - MultiSport Canada
Canada's Largest Triathlon Series
http://www.multisportcanada.com / http://www.niagarafallstriathlon.com
"Discipline Is What You Do When No One Is Watching You"
Last edited by: John Salt: May 1, 13 14:54
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [johnnybefit] [ In reply to ]
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We are working with the local BIA and tourism groups and will be adding information on accommodations and travel in the coming weeks. To answer you specific question, yes, I believe that staying on the Canadian side in Niagara Falls will be the best and easiest.

John Salt, Founder - MultiSport Canada
Canada's Largest Triathlon Series
http://www.multisportcanada.com / http://www.niagarafallstriathlon.com
"Discipline Is What You Do When No One Is Watching You"
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [John Salt] [ In reply to ]
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John's being modest here. I did the Colligwood LC race years ago (RIP...that was an amazing race) which John produced as a point to point.

Utterly flawless.
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [John Salt] [ In reply to ]
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John,

I just realized that this is in 2014. That is a lot of time to get the marketing all ramped up. I have a very good chance of attending as my son will be in college by then and I'll have an empty house (where did time go....one moment you can't wait till they are grown up, then they are and it is too late). Let's talk offline about your race. It is kind of cool that the swim is happening in the Canal that ships used to bypass the Niagara Falls, but then you actually take us right there. Athletes will be doing the opposite of what the early explorers were faced with. They had no canal to get by the falls and had to land portage. You're bike portaging the athletes in the reverse route.

Dev
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [mfreeman72] [ In reply to ]
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Thanks Mat!
Yeah, we really liked that set-up with the Finish in Blue Mountain resort. Unfortunately the town of Collingwood has just grown too much and with increased traffic and the building development by the water it is a R.I.P. I still have quite a few athletes asking for us to bring it back, alas it is not to be.

John Salt, Founder - MultiSport Canada
Canada's Largest Triathlon Series
http://www.multisportcanada.com / http://www.niagarafallstriathlon.com
"Discipline Is What You Do When No One Is Watching You"
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [devashish_paul] [ In reply to ]
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Dev,

I would love to discuss the race with you. Nice angle on the historical back-drop. We won't ask the athletes to carry their bike and portage the bike course though. Please drop me a line at john@multisportcanada.com and let me know a good time and number to call you.

John Salt, Founder - MultiSport Canada
Canada's Largest Triathlon Series
http://www.multisportcanada.com / http://www.niagarafallstriathlon.com
"Discipline Is What You Do When No One Is Watching You"
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [mfreeman72] [ In reply to ]
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John's being modest here. I did the Colligwood LC race years ago (RIP...that was an amazing race) which John produced as a point to point.

Matt,

Not trying to make too big a deal about this, with a really good race management organization, point-to-point should be a non-issue. It's all about having a plan and executing on that plan, and having redundancy built in (because invariably there will be problems).

I have confidence this will be OK. It's only a 20 minute drive from Niagara Falls (the T2 & Finish) and the start (swim & T1). This is a race management organization that has proven over many years that one of their strengths is execution.

The one challenge is there is limited hotel accommodation at the start in the town of Welland. But, 20 minutes away, in Niagara Falls, there is an over-abundance of really good Hotels. So, the smart person, I would think, for the out-of-town person would be the base themselves in Niagara Falls, and take whatever transfer and shuttle help they need to the start.



Steve Fleck @stevefleck | Blog
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [Fleck] [ In reply to ]
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I'm wondering what the weather will be like up there that time of the year??
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [mhazla1978] [ In reply to ]
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September is usually quite nice around here. Warmish days (low 20's on average) without getting too warm. Nights can start to get quite cool towards the end of the month (average in low teens to high single digits). Water temp should be perfect as long as the race isn't too close to October. I always wondered why there weren't more races in September since it seems like much better racing weather than July and August.
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [mhazla1978] [ In reply to ]
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The historical average daily temperature and rainfall in September is 22C or 71.6F and 76mm or 3 inches of rain. The Falls actually has a bit of a micro-climate which lends well to a warmer race day. The swim is in the Welland Recreational Waterway which also stays warm and does not have the temperature fluctuations of larger bodies of water, where wind can cause a turnover of colder water coming to the surface.

John Salt, Founder - MultiSport Canada
Canada's Largest Triathlon Series
http://www.multisportcanada.com / http://www.niagarafallstriathlon.com
"Discipline Is What You Do When No One Is Watching You"
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [mhazla1978] [ In reply to ]
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Hahaha...I just realized that my last post could be read that there is 3 inches of rain a day in September. If that was the case we could make it swim, canoe and float. Historically, it is actually 3 inches of rain for the MONTH, and it will be swim, bike, run.

John Salt, Founder - MultiSport Canada
Canada's Largest Triathlon Series
http://www.multisportcanada.com / http://www.niagarafallstriathlon.com
"Discipline Is What You Do When No One Is Watching You"
Last edited by: John Salt: May 8, 13 16:06
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [John Salt] [ In reply to ]
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John, as I discussed offline, I'd like to follow the "making" of this production and understanding all the behind the scenes that you and your team are going through to put this on. As I mentioned, it is important that there is a large ecosystem of non WTC events that service our community so please keep us informed on what you are doing. It's not that we want either WTC or non WTC, it is that we just want to create a larger sport overall so that everyone benefits. As an example, in June, I will race the Tremblant 70.3 and Tupper Lake Half IM 6 days apart (probably stupid), but there is a place in the sport for both types of race, each servicing a slightly different athlete and community need. In the case of Tupper Lake, the race is organized by high school coaches in the community raising all the money for school sports teams. That's slightly different from generating revenue for Providence Equity. But contrary to what many feel, the latter is not bad either. Revenues and profits for everyone is important for the sport to be healthy.

Dev
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [John Salt] [ In reply to ]
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John,

I'm a little torn about the timing of the event. Living in upstate NY, I'm a big fan of adding stellar races, especially longer ones. Within 2 hours of my house (read- ideal for me!) we have a half in June (IM Syracuse), July (Musselman), and Sept (Pain in the Alleganies). Nothing in August. Now you go a schedule another one for Sept. Anyway you could move to August?

I suppose that there are reasons for you wanting to do a race in Sept. Granted, I'm being selfish here but I personally think that Aug would give you more daylight (I hate setting up shop in the dark and cooler temps). There is a large crowd of multisporters from the Buffalo/ Rochester/ Syracuse area that you are tapping into.

Anyway, food for thought. Thank you for listening.






Take a short break from ST and read my blog:
http://tri-banter.blogspot.com/
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [Fleck] [ In reply to ]
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Finally a swim course map with an elevation profile! We talk about MSC getting execution right, and it's the little things like this that make the difference.
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [twoadays] [ In reply to ]
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You don't know the half of it.....we had to take out the hill on the swim in Welland. The funny thing is we actually could have had a swim with elevation, but we thought it might be too much of a challenge to swim UP the Falls.

John Salt, Founder - MultiSport Canada
Canada's Largest Triathlon Series
http://www.multisportcanada.com / http://www.niagarafallstriathlon.com
"Discipline Is What You Do When No One Is Watching You"
Last edited by: John Salt: May 9, 13 5:18
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [devashish_paul] [ In reply to ]
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Dev, it was great chatting with you and I would love to share the "making" of the Niagara Falls Half Iron Triathlon. I also couldn't agree with you more on the need for a large triathlon ecosystem in order to keep the sport healthy and growing. As I was telling you, in the past 12 years a large part of our growth strategy has been developing reciprocal relationships that are win/win. We have avoided having races on dates which might conflict, especially with a local independent race, worked with triathlon stakeholders like coaches and clubs and assisted some with race production. As I said, I will be happy to share our journey with you and appreciate your interest in telling the story.

John Salt, Founder - MultiSport Canada
Canada's Largest Triathlon Series
http://www.multisportcanada.com / http://www.niagarafallstriathlon.com
"Discipline Is What You Do When No One Is Watching You"
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [Tri-Banter] [ In reply to ]
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It was basically a desire to create a race with a huge differentiator. Why have a race in Niagara Falls unless you can take full advantage of the Falls? While there are a few races which end just before the Falls, for us it was absolutely necessary for the run to go by the Falls or there was no point. Twice by the Falls was the dream run.

We also had to factor in that Niagara Falls, and what would be the run course, is extremely busy with vehicular and pedestrian traffic in July and August. The reality is Niagara Falls does not need an event like ours in July and August. The safety concerns for athletes and disruption to the community is just too great. For the past three years we have been working with the Niagara Parks Commission and the City of Niagara Falls to find a way to get our run past the Falls, which also meant going through the city. Both the NPC and the City were supportive of our goal but it came down to a simple choice. If we wanted that run we needed to find a date on the shoulder season where we would cause the least disruption to the City and its visiting tourists. That left June or September.

We already have the successful Welland Half Iron in June so it did not make sense to change something just for the sake of change. Also, as you say, 70.3 Syracuse is in June, so why bump up against another event that is so close by? That left September and the logic was compelling. Niagara Falls has a bit of a micro-climate and it stays warmer deep into September with minimal rainfall. September is a great time of the year for families to visit the nearby attractions before, during and after the race. The Niagara Grape and Wine Festival is that weekend which is a bit of a draw away from the Falls but could be an attraction for some of our athlete's families (and maybe a few athletes). The NPC and City would support the third week in September and give us the run course with two loops past the Falls, so it just made sense.

So, in the end, the answer to this is relatively simple.....we really didn't feel we had much choice if we wanted an epic run course. Thanks to the NPC and the City of Niagara Falls we have it and I hope we see you there.

John Salt, Founder - MultiSport Canada
Canada's Largest Triathlon Series
http://www.multisportcanada.com / http://www.niagarafallstriathlon.com
"Discipline Is What You Do When No One Is Watching You"
Last edited by: John Salt: May 9, 13 8:37
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [John Salt] [ In reply to ]
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Hi John,

Any updates to share on the race?

Thanks, John
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [johnnybefit] [ In reply to ]
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Hey John,

Thanks for asking.

We are down to a short list of hotels in the hopes of securing a special athlete rate. The reality is there are so many hotels that rates are very good to start with. I spoke with Dev a couple of months ago and we are planning to discuss the race in September, with the possibility of him providing an objective perspective for Slowtwitch. I obviously hope that happens.

We are really happy with the number of people who have expressed an interest in the race by signing up for our newsletter. We will start sending news releases to those athletes just before registration opens. Registration will open on September 21, 2013, a year before race day. You can sign up for the newsletter at http://niagarafallstriathlon.com/news/

John Salt, Founder - MultiSport Canada
Canada's Largest Triathlon Series
http://www.multisportcanada.com / http://www.niagarafallstriathlon.com
"Discipline Is What You Do When No One Is Watching You"
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [John Salt] [ In reply to ]
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Thanks John, signed up for the newsletter. I am eager to add this race to my plan for 2014 and make a nice vacation out of it as well.
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [John Salt] [ In reply to ]
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Hey John, very excited about this race as someone who lives right across the border. Quick question to follow-up on some of Tri-Banter's points - did you consider a full Iron-distance option, as opposed to the large proliferation of half iron-distance options?

For those coming across the border from the states, I HIGHLY recommend getting a NEXUS pass - it will make your life much easier if you are crossing the border on race day (or any other day for that matter), and if you have never done a Multsport Canada race before, they are amongst the best in the business - always a great job....

Bob
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [bobwiller] [ In reply to ]
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bobwiller wrote:
For those coming across the border from the states, I HIGHLY recommend getting a NEXUS pass - it will make your life much easier if you are crossing the border on race day (or any other day for that matter),

What is this and where do I get it?
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [Fleck] [ In reply to ]
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Awesome. Only a couple hours drive from home, and we take the kids to falls every year around late September. Everybody wins, sign me up!


______________________
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [johnnybefit] [ In reply to ]
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johnnybefit wrote:

What is this and where do I get it?

http://www.cbsa-asfc.gc.ca/.../nexus/menu-eng.html
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [neda] [ In reply to ]
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neda wrote:
johnnybefit wrote:


What is this and where do I get it?
http://www.cbsa-asfc.gc.ca/.../nexus/menu-eng.html[/quote[/url]]


Thanks for the info. How difficult is the process to cross the border if I don't have this pass?
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [johnnybefit] [ In reply to ]
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it really depends on the traffic at the border control checkpoint you are at. It isn't unusual for it to last 90 minutes, but can go up to 3 hours on a bad day. Nexus really makes it a LOT easier/faster, and also works in airports. As an average business traveller, I love it and would highly recommend getting it
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [neda] [ In reply to ]
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Thanks. This will be a one time trip across for us but I would pay $50 to save 3 hours.
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [johnnybefit] [ In reply to ]
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" Thanks for the info. How difficult is the process to cross the border if I don't have this pass?"

How big a concern is crossing the border for Americans to do a race in Canada - Serious question?

To answer your question - No, a NEXUS card is not required. You will need a passport. If the line up is long at the border the NEXUS card can reduce that time a bit or a lot depending on what the situation is like when you show up - this is true for land or airport customs clearance.


Steve Fleck @stevefleck | Blog
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [johnnybefit] [ In reply to ]
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Handy dandy average wait time website

http://www.cbsa-asfc.gc.ca/bwt-taf/menu-eng.html

:)
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [Fleck] [ In reply to ]
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Fleck wrote:
" Thanks for the info. How difficult is the process to cross the border if I don't have this pass?"

How big a concern is crossing the border for Americans to do a race in Canada - Serious question?

To answer your question - No, a NEXUS card is not required. You will need a passport. If the line up is long at the border the NEXUS card can reduce that time a bit or a lot depending on what the situation is like when you show up - this is true for land or airport customs clearance.

Thanks Steve. It was a legitimate question as I have not crossed before. Good note about the passport.
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [johnnybefit] [ In reply to ]
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For those not familiar with the Niagara region, we have 4 International crossings. As others have said, the wait can be up to 3 hours (however an early Saturday or Sunday morning should not be a problem - getting back on the other hand post-race is a different story.) This site shows you delays on both side of the four bridges: http://niagarafallsbridges.com/. The real benefit to the Nexus card for locals is access to the Whirlpool bridge which is NEXUS only - as the interviewing agent said when we did our interviews "it is like your own private country club border crossing".

The process is fairly easy - fill out the online app, pay $50, and schedule an interview. However the wait time for an interview can be up to three months. You then need to do an in person interview w/both a Canadian and US customs official. (We found it interesting that even though they worked out of the same little building the US officer carried a weapon, and the Canadian official did not, but I digress....)

It is important to note that everyone in the vehicle needs to have a NEXUS pass if you use the Whirlpool bridge or NEXUS lanes. And in addition to some conveniences at airports, those of us who boat on the Niagara river or Great Lakes, it can make your life easier there also.
Bob
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [johnnybefit] [ In reply to ]
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Thanks Steve. It was a legitimate question as I have not crossed before. Good note about the passport.

Great. Glad I could help.

The post above is helpful as well.

I cross the border regularly, from Canada into the U.S. and back, and even without a NEXUS card I have never had to wait 3-hours. Although my back and forth in the last has been dramatically reduced to just a few times. I have heard of significant cut-backs in staffing for U.S. Customs & Immigration. Perhaps this is impacting things for people crossing into the U.S. more.

I recently came back into Canada, in the afternoon, on the Monday of a long holiday weekend( ie about as peak as you can get) and the wait was about 45 minutes. I was expecting the worst with that one, but was pleasantly surprised.



Steve Fleck @stevefleck | Blog
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [Fleck] [ In reply to ]
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One more question: Do you have to get out of your car for the check? Or just stay in the car, show passport and say why you are crossing?
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [Fleck] [ In reply to ]
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was there any thought to doing a sprint? some of us prefer them, or come with friends and partners doing the half and would do a sprint.
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [johnnybefit] [ In reply to ]
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Most of the time you sit in the car, exchange a few words and are on your way. The border crossing into Canada is a pretty friendly and straight forward. They'll ask you how long you plan to be in the country, where you plan on staying and what you intend to do. Simple basic answes will get you through in a minute or two. The Broder crossing into the US is pretty much the same.

The NEXUS card is unnecessary unless you plan crossing back and forth often. It requires Homeland Security and CSIS background checks and is overkill for a single tourist visit.

Occasionally the border guards will do random check. The probability of such a random check increases if you happen to be wearing gang-banger attire, a rastafarian hat with a Marijuana leaf T-shirt, mention you love guns and never leave home without them, or keep shouting Arabic phrases while a strange ticking sound eminates from under your shirt.

"The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, and wiser people so full of doubts." - Bertrand Russell
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [Doubletime] [ In reply to ]
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Thanks DT. That helps. Will keep it short and sweet.
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [bobwiller] [ In reply to ]
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Hey Bob, glad to hear you are excited and thank you for the kind words about our races!

The honest answer is that we had given some consideration to an Iron Distance for the reason you mention, but there are several factors in the decision to launch as a Half Iron, not the least of are the following.

We know this course well, as it is part of our Welland Half Iron in June. The bike course for the Niagara race is a nice course with the first loop being 65k to the south and southwest of Welland, parts of which are along Lake Erie, with the final 25k splitting off to go to Niagara Falls. In order to increase the distance to 165k we would need to extend the bike course in a more northerly direction and then bring it back to the split where you go to the Falls. In order to do that we must cross commercial railway lines. The issue with commercial railway lines is there is no schedule. Train time is anytime. Given that alone we have decided to go with what we know and start out as a Half Iron. That does not preclude the possibility of exploring other options for extending the bike to the east and south closer to Niagara Falls. If we could find 180k that way, it could work. There are certainly a lot of athletes in Ontario who would like to see a full Iron Distance. Having said that, we would have another issue to address, the run course and use of the Parkway in Niagara Falls.

What will make this such a special race is the two times you get to run past the American and Canadian Falls. I personally worked for three years on getting the approval to run twice PAST the Falls (no one has been that lucky before). We have a completely closed lane for the run on the Niagara Parkway and the Niagara Parks Commission has been great to work with. The City of Niagara Falls has been very helpful for the city section of the run. The issue with a full Iron would be the length of time we would need the lane on the Niagara Parkway and the roads in the city, especially the section on Murray Hill as you go past the Niagara Casino, heading to the Parkway and the Falls section. With a Half Iron we know that 2/3 of athletes will be clear of Murray Hill on the second loop by 3:15. With a full Iron it would be a lot later. Once we see the impact the race will have as a Half we could see if there was an appetite on the part of the city and Niagara Parks Commission to allow extended use of the roads. After all we are visiting their home and it is very important we keep the communities happy.

I know that is a long answer to a short question but I want you to know we are looking at everything to make this a special race.

John Salt, Founder - MultiSport Canada
Canada's Largest Triathlon Series
http://www.multisportcanada.com / http://www.niagarafallstriathlon.com
"Discipline Is What You Do When No One Is Watching You"
Last edited by: John Salt: Aug 22, 13 13:34
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [buzz] [ In reply to ]
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Buzz, no thoughts on a Sprint right now, mainly because of the two transitions. Our first priority will be getting the Half Iron athletes to the start and racing by 9:00AM. A shorter distance race is possible if we started that race at 8:00AM and the Half at 9:00AM. It would have to be a Triathlon distance (750/30/7.5) and not a Sprint with a 20k bike. Otherwise you don't make it to the Falls. We will make sure the Half Iron is well executed in 2014 and then consider the possibility. After all, the Sprint athletes could volunteer after their race was done or at least cheer home the Half Iron athletes.

John Salt, Founder - MultiSport Canada
Canada's Largest Triathlon Series
http://www.multisportcanada.com / http://www.niagarafallstriathlon.com
"Discipline Is What You Do When No One Is Watching You"
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [John Salt] [ In reply to ]
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With a full Iron it would be a lot later.

John,

No kidding.

This is the part of these longer races that is hard for people to understand. For a full iron-distance race, you would need to have permitting and road closures for some key roads for 17+ hours!! Considering, that most municipalities start at "absolutly no" for these sorts of things, to get anything, is great. To get what you need for a 1/2 iron-distance is extrordinary.





Steve Fleck @stevefleck | Blog
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [John Salt] [ In reply to ]
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I'm stoked by this race announcement. I absolutely enjoyed racing John's Welland Half and will almost certainly do both the Welland and Niagara next season.

"The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, and wiser people so full of doubts." - Bertrand Russell
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [Fleck] [ In reply to ]
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Ironic that crossing border now is harder and longer (did I just type that!) than when I had long hair, beard, and Grateful Dead tickets in my hand. How times have changed!

@rhyspencer
Http://www.rhysspencer.blogspot.ca
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Re: New Race In Niagara Falls Canada [devashish_paul] [ In reply to ]
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Unfortunately, people tend to choose courses where they can get a fast time, rather than testing their manliness on a course that challenges peoples abilities.

The people doing the Niagara Falls 1/2 will not be the same people doing the Rotorua 1/2 IM that is for sure.

Remember, there's room for all types of people and races in triathlon, so more power to the people who can't manage hills :-)

TriDork

"Happiness is a myth. All you can hope for is to get laid once in a while, drunk once in a while and to eat chocolate every day"
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