After finishing second in her age division last year, Liv’s ready for this year’s ChelanMan

 

Liv Aspholm, left, poses with Methow Valley Elementary fifth-grade teacher Kelly van Bueren, who inspired the plucky youngster to enter the ChelanMan Try-a-Tri. Photo courtesy of David Aspholm,/i>

Liv Aspholm, left, poses with Methow Valley Elementary fifth-grade teacher Kelly van Bueren, who inspired the plucky youngster to enter the ChelanMan Try-a-Tri. Photo courtesy of David Aspholm,/i>

By Mike Maltais

The eighth annual ChelanMan triathlon will take place at Lake Chelan on July 19-20, and for the second consecutive year 11-year-old Liv Aspholm of Winthrop will be among the competitors lined up for the three-event Try-a-Tri.

The Try-a-Tri is a scaled-down swim-bike-run version of the ChelanMan and is designed to give participants a taste of triathlon.

The Tri begins with a 400-meter swim that starts at Lakeside Park’s western beach and follows a somewhat rectangular route to the park’s easternmost shore.

Athletes will enter the water in waves of 50 to 60 swimmers spaced five minutes apart.

After exiting the water, contestants will mount their bikes for a 13.1-mile out-and-back route that will follow South Lakeshore Road (Highway 97) and begin and end at Lakeshore Park.

The final Tri leg, a 3.1-mile or 5-kilometer out-and-back run, will also begin and end at Lakeshore Park. Each athlete will be given a timing chip at the beginning of the Tri and volunteers will collect the chips as the runners finish.

Aspholm was one of the youngest contestants to enter the Try-a-Tri last year.

Inspired by her fifth-grade teacher, triathlete Kelly van Bueren, Aspholm trained daily with swims in Patterson Lake, bike rides with father, David, and competition in local trail runs like the Sunflower, Mazama 5K, and Rattler trail runs.

Aspholm finished second in the 15-years-and-under division in her first Tri and 95th overall out of 122 finishers in a time of just two hours.

Now a veteran of the event, Aspholm knows what to expect in the Tri but hasn’t altered her training regimen that much.

“Last year the swim was my toughest event,” she admitted as she continued to hit the water and refine the stroke techniques that Methow Valley Killer Whales swim coach Bo Thrasher helped her with last year.

Aspholm raised eyebrows earlier this year when the Methow Valley Elementary student joined four other fifth- and sixth-grade junior Nordic cross country teammates — Walker Hall, Novie McCabe, Emerson Worrell and brother Peter Aspholm — and competing as Team MRD, nearly won the 34th annual Sunflower Relay’s 26.2-mile run.

The ChelanMan was started in 2007 by a group of Chelan athletes who trained together and decided to build a multi-sport weekend of swimming, biking and running events.

The ChelanMan now features competition for every level of athletic ability including the Try-a-Tri first timer triathlon, 10K and half-marathon runs, and Olympic and Half-Iron triathlons.