Preparations Underway for Ironman 70.3 Michigan Race in Frankfort

Sunday is the Ironman 70.3 Michigan Race in Frankfort. A team of about 60 people and hundreds of volunteers are preparing for the event.

“Athletes start off swimming 1.2 miles, and that’s Betsie Bay, then they’re going to bike 56 miles, and then they will run to 13.1 miles around Betsie Bay as well for a total of 70.3 miles,” explained Joel Gaff Jr., Race Director for Ironman 70.3 Michigan.

It takes six days to set up the massive event.

“Most of our tents have been set up, reloading and all of our items into those tents, setting up the bike racks for the bikes to be hung for race weekend. Our course teams are out on the bike, and the run course is measuring and double checking all the turns,” said Gaff Jr.

More than 2,000 people from around the world are expected to compete.

Traverse City Tourism says this event helps keep northern Michigan’s economy thriving.

“We’re super excited to help, you know, energize the town during a time of year when maybe it’s starting to slow down, keep those businesses busy; those small businesses really depend on this business,” said Trevor Tkach, President, and CEO of Traverse City Tourism.

If you’re one of the 2,000 competing, Gaff Jr. has some advice.

“Enjoy the day the athletes have worked hard, to train here and get here. Just getting to the starting line is a big achievement in and of itself,” said Gaff Jr. “Thank a volunteer the energy that you can give back to the volunteers and that they can give to each other, to the athletes is something special.”