USA Triathlon announced a three-way partnership with USA Swimming and U.S. Masters Swimming to host open water swim races as part of two USA Triathlon-owned events this year, the inaugural Legacy Triathlon and the Toyota USA Triathlon Age Group National Championships.
The alliance was forged as a way for the organizations to collectively grow the sports of swimming and triathlon. The open water swim competitions will introduce single-sport swimmers to the multisport community, while offering a valuable racing option for triathletes who wish to hone their open water skills.
USA Triathlon, USA Swimming and U.S. Masters Swimming share many of the same members, making the partnership a natural fit. Athletes are not required to be members of any of the three organizations in order to compete in the open water swim events.
“Since the launch of the Time to Tri growth initiative last year, USA Triathlon has operated under the philosophy that a rising tide lifts all ships,” said Rocky Harris, USA Triathlon CEO. “This partnership is a perfect example of working with two peer organizations who share our goals as well as our values. Triathletes across the country have found community and camaraderie through USA Swimming and U.S. Masters Swimming programs. At the same time, we believe there is an opportunity we haven’t fully realized to reach aspiring triathletes from the swimming community.”
The organizations will also collaborate on marketing and promotional efforts, while encouraging participation across their respective membership bases.
“Swimming is a lifelong sport, and finding ways for our membership to experience it in new ways, develop new skills and have fun is definitely a winning proposition,” said Joel Shinofield, Managing Director of Sport Development at USA Swimming. “Partnering with like-minded organizations such as USA Triathlon and U.S. Masters to continue to engage the membership and to get more athletes in the water is important to our respective long-term successes.”
“We’re excited for the opportunity to partner with USA Triathlon and USA Swimming on these events,” said Dawson Hughes, CEO of U.S. Masters Swimming. “Providing more opportunities for our members to participate in open water swimming, as either a fitness challenge or competitive endeavor, is a goal for all three of our organizations. We hope these initial events serve as a platform for further collaboration.”