The Event and Rules Explained

Course Length – 2.4 miles (1 loop)Cut Off Time: 2hours and 20 minutes after the last wave starts at 7:00 AM

  • Average water temp:71 degrees F/19C
    Age Group Start Time: 6:42 AM with the participants divided into eight waves starting every 3 minutes
  • Once around a rectangle shaped course, with a very brief run on the beach in between to cross a timing mat.
  • No fins, aqua socks, gloves, paddles or flotation devices of any kind allowed.
  • No individual paddlers or escorts allowed. Course will be adequately patrolled by boats, canoes and paddleboards.

WTC rules permit wetsuits when the water is up to and including 76.1 degrees F. If the water temp is between 76.2 and 83.8 degrees, athletes may wear a wetsuit but will not be eligible for awards or able to qualify for championship events. When the water is 83.9 degrees or warmer wetsuits are not permitted. Wetsuits may not exceed 5 mm thick (most are not).

Course Length – 112 miles (2 Loops)Cut Off Time: 10 hours and 30 minutes after the final age group wave begins (5:30 PM for bike finish)

  • Absolutely no drafting off another bike or any other vehicle is allowed. Contestants must ride single-file on the right side of the road except when passing another rider.
  • Riders must keep a 4 bike-length distance between bikes except when passing.
  • No individual support allowed. Ample aid and food stations will be provided. Friends, family members, coaches or supporters of any type may not bike or drive alongside contestant, may not pass food or other items to contestant and should be warned to stay completely clear of all participants to avoid the disqualification of a participant.
Course Length – 26.2 miles (2 Loops)Cut Off Time: 17 hours after the final age group wave or 12:00 AM for race end.

  • Athletes must exit transition and start the run by 5:40 PM to continue in the race
  • Runners must wear race number at all times on the course. Race number must be placed on front of runner where it is clearly visible.

No individual support vehicles or non-participant escort runners are allowed. This is an individual endurance event. Teamwork as a result of outside assistance which provides an advantage over single competitors is not allowed. Ample aid and food stations will be provided. Individual support vehicles or non-participant escort runners will result in disqualification. Friends, family members, coaches or supporters of any type may not bike, drive or run alongside contestant, may not pass food or other items to contestant and should be warned to stay completely clear of all participants to avoid the disqualification of a participant. It IS permissible for contestants who are still competing to run with other contestants who are still competing.

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Growing up, I was never even remotely athletic, a distinct liability in a sports-mad country. Moreover, I grew to associate the idea of people being “sporty” with people who were generally obnoxious, who loved to lord their athletic prowess over others.

Triathlon, therefore, was a revelation for me: very ordinary people who were able to achieve extraordinary things. Team Z is the essence of triathlon in that regard, an amazing mix of experienced athletes (who turned out to be quite nice people) and absolute beginners, all sharing their different journeys. The team is full of people who push me when I need to be pushed and who push me when I don’t think I want to be pushed. Because the team pushes me, I’ve become something I never would have believed I could become: an athlete.

Mark Mullen


Never say never on Team Z! I never thought I would do a triathlon let alone a half Ironman. I told anyone who would listen that the only way I would ever run another marathon was if it was in an Ironman and since I was never going to do an Ironman I had nothing to worry about. Well, so much for my “never” list. With the support of Team Z, I have raced numerous short distance triathlons, several half Ironmans, raced my best injury free marathon (I beat Oprah’s time), and signed up for an Ironman.
Regardless of your experience, speed, motivation, and goals there is a place for you on Team Z. When I joined the Team in December 2011, I did not know what to expect. My old game plan was to go as fast and as hard as possible regardless of the consequences. I do not recommend this strategy. I somehow always fell to side with an injury and burned out long before I reached the start line. This all changed when I joined Team Z. With the help of the coaches and my teammates, I am learning everyday how to find balance physically, set reachable goals, listen to my body, and enjoy the experience. I have a good friend on the Team that says that all the training and hard work is the journey. Race day is the victory lap. Gotta Love Team Z!

Kathy Hsu


In 2009 I ran the Disney Marathon with my mom, accompanying her on her first 26.2 mile adventure. I remember standing at the start next to her and saying, “just think, those Ironman people have to do this after swimming 2.4 miles and biking 112”¦..freaking lunatics!.” Two years later with a couple of sprint and Olympic triathlons under my belt, and after a couple of glasses of wine, I started to wonder, “Maybe I can do an Ironman too?” So I pulled the trigger, dropped the cash, and signed up for Ironman Cozumel. This followed by immediate panic. “Oh dear God, what have I done? I haven’t the slightest clue how to train for an Ironman.” A couple months later, by chance, I ran into a Z’er outside of my work and as we started talking Triathlon, she told me about Team Z. “Why not? It can’t hurt” I thought to myself. So I joined. It didn’t take me long to realize that this team had everything I wanted: knowledgeable and supportive coaches, structured training plans for all levels and abilities, fantastic teammates, and most importantly cold beers ready for you after every race!

Scott Leary