Photo praises to the resolve of the ‘everyman’ in Ironman 70.3 St. George

ST. GEORGE — They came, they saw, and for most of the nearly 2,500 athletes that came to participate in the Ironman 70.3 St. George … they conquered.

Double amputee Sidney Smith exits the waters of Sand Hollow Reservoir during the Ironman 70.3 St. George, Hurricane, Utah, May 6, 2017 | Photo by Hollie Reina, St. George News

The day started before dawn as thousands of eager athletes arrived at Sand Hollow State Park and prepared to make the 1.2-mile swim around the reservoir.

The smell of sunblock wafted through the air and colorfully capped swimmers lined up for their wave starts.

Despite predictions for a gusty afternoon — the swim waves were started 5-10 minutes early and closer together to get everyone on the course as fast as possible — it was a serene start at the lake.

Perhaps the most inspiring images of the morning came when Vernal resident and double amputee Sidney Smith came out of the water. Smith crawled up the swim finish ramp to where his team was waiting to help him put on his prosthetic legs. When he took off toward the bike transition Smith drew the largest cheers from the gathered crowd.

Early morning racers enjoyed cloud coverage that kept the sun’s harsh light at bay through a large portion of the bike course but as the day progressed, the sun came out in force bringing with it the Southern Utah heat.

The course of the Ironman 70.3 North American Pro Championship St. George triathlon is widely known as one of the more difficult Ironman 70.3 courses. Coupled with the heat, it made for a challenging race day both for the professionals and the age-group athletes.

See the video in media player top of this report.

Professional women’s winner Holly Lawrence said that she had forgotten how difficult the course was, adding that no matter if you are a professional or age-group athlete you are all suffering in the same conditions.

And that is the brutal and beautiful reality of the feat that each of the Ironman 70.3 St. George competitors accomplished.

St. George News praises the ‘everyman’ of Ironman 70.3 St. George. Find yourself, find your athlete in our everyman photo gallery.

Click on photo to enlarge it, then use your left-right arrow keys to cycle through the gallery.

Email: hreina@stgnews.com

Twitter: @STGnews

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2017, all rights reserved.

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1 Comment

  • mmsandie May 6, 2017 at 5:26 pm

    Great pics and reporting, st George news always does a great job…congrats to all who participated…thanks to all

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