The 30th Tagaman Triathlon last Saturday featured 181 participants from 12 countries—a 30 percent increase in participants from 2018.
Finishers were led by Yu Shinozaki (2:48:39) of Japan, followed by Hiroyuki Nishiuchi of Japan (3:04:06) and Aleksandr Dorovskikh (3:04:15) of Russia. Guam pro Manami Iijima (3:12:12) led the female category, followed by Laura Nadeau (3:13:18), also from Guam, and Maria Hodges (3:26:13) of the Philippines. Leading the mixed team relay (3:36:19) were swimmer Tamio Nishikido, biker Kimiko Mckagan, and runner Kosuke Sato.
Participating athletes from Korea, Russia, Japan, Hong Kong, Guam, the Philippines, USA, Spain, Cambodia, Netherlands, and The Marianas took to the challenge with picture perfect weather conditions for the swim, bike, run event organized by the Triathlon Association of the CNMI under the Marianas Visitors Authority.
“This year’s 30th Annual Tagaman triathlon was a testament to the enduring appeal of this event,” said Marianas Visitors Authority managing director Christopher A. Concepcion. “It was great to see many previous competitors, organizers, and volunteers return to support this year’s anniversary, not to mention the many new participants, and we’re looking forward to the continued revival of this great race.”
The race began at 6am with a 2-kilometer swim leg in the western lagoon of Saipan from the official start line at Kilili Beach Park in Susupe. This was followed by a 60K bike ride along Saipan’s western course south to the Francisco C. Ada/Saipan International Airport, followed by a picturesque ride through the scenic sites of the Marpi region of Saipan. The 15K run followed a lagoon-hugging course along Beach Road to American Memorial Park and back to the finish line in Susupe.
The Tagaman Triathlon is an annual signature event of the MVA, jointly organized with TRAC and aimed at attracting visiting athletes and media coverage for The Marianas
“Glad to see the seed that was planted by J.M. Guerrero, Bill Sakovich, and Wolf Mojica continues to flourish,” said TRAC president Ricky Castro. “It’s a surreal feeling to witness former and new champions with a 30-year gap between them standing side by side on this rare occasion!”
Meanwhile, the 30th Tagaman Triahtlon was supported by platinum sponsors Kanoa Resort Saipan, the official hotel of Tagaman Triathlon, and IT&E. Gold sponsors were DFS/T Galleria, Tan Holdings, JC Tenorio Ent., Hyatt Regency Saipan, Brabu Pharmacy Wellness Center, MARPAC, Marianas Variety, Neo Timing System and KFC Triathlon. Silver sponsors were PDI, Triple J Enterprises, Powerade, and Tri-Tour. Bronze sponsors were Saipan Ice & Water, Bridge Capital LLC, Fiesta Resort Saipan, Marianas Medical Center, Saipan Shipping Company, J.E.T. Holding Company, Let’s Go Tour, Saeko, Eland, Let’s Go Tour and Island Apparel. Event supporters included the Dept. of Public Safety (DPS), Dept. of Fire and Emergency Medical Services, Dept. of Public Works (Road and Grounds), DPS Boating and Traffic, Div. of Parks and Grounds, Saipan Mayor’s Office, Marianas Health Services, Mount Carmel School, My Wave Club, and Hawaiian Rock Products. (PR)