Saturday, July 26, 2008

Loaring Triathlon Makes Return

Loaring Triathlon Makes Return

The 8th Elena Loaring Memorial Triathlon event was held on Saturday on the shores of Lake Erie. The event, held now once every two years, represents a unique competition that is very beginner and spectator friendly with its short distances, and unique racing format.

Competitors in the Beginner Triathlon are challenged with an opening leg of swimming that stretches 375 metres in the choppy shores of Lake Erie. They then proceed into the bicycle area and gear up for a second leg of the race that takes them11 kms that starts and ends off of County Road 50. The athletes then complete their journey with a 2.6 kms run.

Co-Race Director Charlotte Loaring confirmed that, “Our goals are to continue to encourage new people to the exploding and popular sport of triathlon, motivate our community members to lead active and healthy lifestyles, and reach our fundraising goal of $100,000. We do this with the amazing help and generosity of over 450 volunteers, spectators, and local sponsors.”

Named in honour of their late mother, the triathlon raised funds for a breast cancer scholarship fund that receives dollar for dollar matching funds from the government.

“Our next event is in 2010 and we will be announcing a new and exciting fundraising cause,” remarked James Loaring, co-race director. “This year’s event was a great success and we reached our goal of raising over $100 000 for the Elena Loaring Memorial Fund for Breast Cancer Research.”

Full article here

Fight to the Finish

Maureen Balsillie, left, and Laura Docherty race toward the finish line Saturday at the Elena Loaring Memorial Triathlon. Balsillie finished second and Docherty third in the women's beginner division.

David Sharratt of Guelph finished first overall at the eighth Loaring Triathlon Saturday, finishing the double triathlon event in a time of one hour, 10 minutes, 55 seconds.
Windsor's Josh Seifarth was second (1:11:37) and Matt Gervais third (1:12:32).
Windsor's Nicki Nolte led the women in 1:23:20. Leamington's Emilie Potvin was second (1:23:37), while Windsor's Sarah Woodworth was third (1:24:58).

For results, see B7.

Photograph by : Star photo: Dan Janisse

Racing for a Cure

Racing for a Cure
By Kyle Horner - July 23, 2008

The forecast last Saturday called for oppressive heat and humidity but that could not extinguish the excitement of the competitors and spectators that turned out for the 8th running of The Loaring Triathlon.

“We wanted to introduce people to the sports we loved,” said Charlotte Loaring, an organizer of the triathlon. “When my own mother was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2003 we started to make our own charity towards breast cancer as a tribute to her because she lost her battle with the disease.”

About 500 participants, spectators and volunteers turned out to watch the race. Funds will be donated locally to the Elena Loaring Memorial Fund for Breast Cancer Research through the University of Windsor.

Proceeds from the memorial fund support scholarships for students of the University of Windsor studying breast cancer research.

The Ontario government doubles all donations received through the triathlon until 2011.

"We’ve raised $87,000 to date and are hoping to get over the $100,000 mark,” Loaring said midway through the day.

Loaring does not compete in the event because she finds herself busy enough with organizing it, but she has competed in many triathlons including the Iron Man race in Brazil.

“My mother was my biggest supporter,” Loaring said. “She loved this event and was part of it for five years.”

The event started with a 375-metre swim in Lake Erie, followed by an 11-kilometre bike ride and finished off with a 2.6-kilometre run.

Experienced triathletes participated in the double event going through the entire course twice.

There was an award ceremony for all the winners in each age category and for overall male and female winners in the beginner and double triathlon.

Once the race was completed, racers were treated to an all-you-can-eat dinner with an Elvis impersonator, and live musical entertainment went on well into the evening.

At the end of the day, organizers reported that they had achieved their overall goal of raising $100,000 for the Elena Loaring Memorial Fund for Breast Cancer Research.

Online article here and pic here.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Triathlon Celebrates Athletics

Triathlon celebrates athletics

Derek DeBono, Special to The Windsor Star
Published: Thursday, July 24, 2008

The visitor stood near the shore of Lake Erie trying to identify the tree that stood before him when the horn sounded, sending the swimmers into the water.

The swimmers were triathletes, starting the first leg of their three-part journey to the finish line. The tree was a magnolia, planted in memory and celebration of the life of Elena Loaring.

The Loaring triathlon began in 1999 by Charlotte Loaring and her brother James amid the lush surroundings of the family cottage near Colchester. It has evolved into an intimate and charming fundraiser for research into breast cancer, the disease that claimed the life of Elena in 2004.

The charm of the event is in its simplicity. It's a shorter version of the Olympic distance, which makes it achievable for beginners. Experienced triathletes looking for a greater challenge complete the course twice.

The Loaring Triathlon has left the complexities of science behind. It isn't about the mechanics of swimming, personal bests or podium potential. It is anti-elite in its design, yet manages to maintain the professional standards of a top sports event. It takes you back to the spirit of athletics, to a time when a footpath, a lake and a country road provided the perfect sports environment. Swimming, biking and running are natural cross-training sports we have always done for recreation.

It's about first-timers like Joe Fornitron, 14, who slipped out of the transition area and past the magnolia tree as smooth as silk, and about Heather Douglas, who rode the 11-kilometre second leg of the race on a borrowed bike. It is about having fun and being a part of a gesture of love for the sport of triathlon that has grown into a larger gesture of love and support for friends, family and the survivors of cancer.

Athletes, regardless of age, size or ability, develop a strong and rarely seen intimacy even when they don't know each other but when the venue they're competing in has significance. Elena Loaring passed away at the cottage, surrounded by family, her favourite music and magnolia trees. It's that kind of history that awakens one's sense of mortality and rekindles a zest for life.

Full article here

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

We Salute You

The 2008 Loaring Triathlon was a great success. We have unofficially achieved our goal of raising over $100 000 for the Elena Loaring Memorial Fund for Breast Cancer Research.

To Elena Loaring--for being the greatest mom, and a great friend to many--we all salute you.

To the participants--especially those who completed their first triathlon--we salute you.

To the volunteers--who were all incredible in making the event a well-oiled machine--we salute you. Below I have cut and pasted an email that Charlotte sent out to our champion volunteer team.

To the sponsors--for being so gracious in donating product, services, or $$$--we salute you.

Dear Volunteer Team

This morning, after the final bit of clean-up, I left the cottage in the same way I always do. I looked up at my mom's vase (a symbol of her physical presence), and her memorial tree (a symbol of her lasting life and memory), and I was immediately overcome with emotion. I realized what a great day I had just been part of; what amazing friends and family I have in my life; and the legacy of my mom's "arms wide open philosophy", strongly rooted, by her, in my brother, my father, and I. We can all firstly thank Elena Loaring for the inspiration.

Next, thank YOU from the bottom of our hearts, for helping make this event a memorable and successful one again this year. We are so very grateful for your contributions, time, and support. Despite slightly smaller numbers than some previous years, we consider this event our greatest success to date, as it was the most smoothly run and organized event we've ever had. Unofficially, we reached our ultimate fundraising goal of $100 000 for The Elena Loaring Memorial Fund for Breast Cancer Research.

Special thanks to the following people for their extraordinary voluntary efforts:

Miro Tot & Keith Henry - Miro & Keith were our tireless Bike Captain's (the toughest part of the course, and the most efficiently organized to date), who worked non-stop Friday & Saturday. (Keith's company, Windsor Mold Group, was also our top financial sponsor.) Thanks also to the team of volunteers on the bike course, including: Adrian Berkeley (who also made a special trip to assist on Friday with set-up), Karen Rocheleau (of the famous Thursday Night Social Running Group), Peggy Cozens, Eric Robertson, Mike Carter, Carolyn Harris, Bob Sidhu, Jeff Scott, Jaicee Rowan & friend Lauren, Miro Tot Sr, Jeff Digou, Rose Caille, Larry Letwin, Barb White, and several others who offered assistance on race-day due to volunteer support needs.

Nissim Abergel - Nissim was our extraordinary Parking and Clean-up Captain, staying until the afternoon on Sunday to ensure all was packed up and organized for 2010. He was assisted by parking co-captains Anthony Pannicia and Dick Watson (who was a jack of all trades on Saturday!).

John Sasso & Lindsey Manning - Doubling as Transition Zone Captains and swim lifeguards, they donated amazing full days of help on Friday and Saturday. Their transition team included assistance from breakfast chef & transition super-star Ralph Iannitelli, Bill Davies (who also secured Union Gas donations), Jeff May, Danielle McKibbon (who also hand-made all ribbons for our participants this year), Mike McWha, Krystle Campbell (who did numerous pick-ups the week leading up to race), and John McKibbon (our OAT official).

Rob Tranter & Tim Colbourne - Rob & Tim, our awesome Running Captains, assisted both Friday and Saturday with course set-up, and tackled the challenging needs of the run course segment. Tim doubled as our media contact, securing an interview for us with AM800, as well as perking the interest of the Windsor Star. Their running team included: Celeste Broadbent, Karen Goran, Haydon & Fallon Mitchel, Serena Hunt, and Kelly Krahn (who earlier in the month assisted with hand-delivering of triathlon event information to all neighbours along the race course).

Steve Watson & Jeff Cowan - Our dedicated swim captains, worked well with kayakers Randy Soepboer and John Loaring, and fellow lifeguard Michelle. Thanks also to Steve & Ashley for making the extra trip Friday night to lend us a hand.

Registration, Raffle & Awards - This was an area that spanned weeks, with the help of fellow colleages Adrienn Nagy & Jody Rowan. Adrienn and Jody sold nearly $1000 in raffle tickets for items generously donated by our many sponsors. On event day, Coleen Tot, Annie Bison, Raquel Cowan, and Kathy Sidhu were efficient and organized with race-kit pick-up, body marking, and awards assistance. Coleen secured us 50 bags of free ice, and special thanks to Kathy Sidhu & Carolyn Harris for chopping hundreds of veggies on Friday night! Breanne Loaring, and Janet, Brian & David Sharatt provided immeasureable support and help all weekend with unloading and set-up, and groceries for all volunteers over the weekend.

Motor City Sertoma - What a group! Lead by Audree Sprague (whose husband and good friend of the Loaring Triathlon - John Sprague - continues his battle in hospital with colon cancer....we love you John). This amazing group of volunteers cooked and sold hundreds of dollars of food and drink, while making additional financial and door prize contributions. Audree brought food leftovers to neady people at Iris House, and hard-working staff at Met hospital so that no food was wasted.

Loaring Physiotherapy Staff - Thom Lovell, Erin Seguin, and Larry Brun donated their massage services the entire afternoon, while Mary Brannagan and Steve Georges were on-site physiotherapists who also came up with a Triathlete Specific handout of target exercises. This was the 3rd weekend in a row that the Loaring staff volunteered their medical services in their community - amazing!

Photographers - Professional photographers, Ed Goodfellow and Gil Shaw, dragged themselves away from the Dragonboat Races early on Saturday to capture our event, along with at least 3 reporters that I know of from local newspapers.

Elvis & Better Than Nuttin Band - Both talented musical line-ups donated their time and talent for free, and were especially appreciated by the die-hards in the group, who enjoyed them until the rain went away and the stars came out. Special thanks to Guido from Windsor Mold Group who assisted to equipment pick-up and set-up.

Wilf Goron - Our Heinz sponsor contact, Wilf also secured Elvis and our first ever Dove Release. Thank you for your unique and lasting impression on the 2008 Loaring Triathlon.

Our Neighbours (The Pawluk & Lawton Family's) - Enormous thank you to both neighbours for their patience, understanding, and support of our event and cause, involving the necessary and complete use of their respective properties.

Our Family - Last, but certainly not least, thank you to our father John, and our new family - the Sharratt Family (Breanne, Janet, Brian, and David) for their ongoing support and super assistance throughout this process.

We hope to see you all in 2010, when we plan to reveal the exciting annoucement of our new fundraising cause! Stay tuned!

Charlotte & James Loaring
Co-Race Directors
Loaring Triathlon

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

New Loaring Physio and LPC Brochure

Click images below to view the new Loaring Physiotherapy / LPC brochure:

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

LPC July e-News

Click the logo below to view the LPC July e-Newsletter

Monday, July 14, 2008

Musselman ITU Pan American Cup

I came into the race with the knowledge that there were many talented athletes who have had much more training under their belt than I this past year. But I told myself to race with heart. And that is what I did. I finished 7th and tied my best ever finish for an ITU triathlon. Now my attention and focus turns towards the upcoming Loaring Tri this Saturday. It will essentially be a week of almost zero training. I am totally ok with that and can't wait to see the smiles on the faces of the many beginner triathletes when they cross the finish line. My sister and I are very fortunate to have such a fantastic volunteer committee to help with what really is a colossal undertaking. We are also very fortunate to have amazing community support--which have been instrumental in helping to raise over $100 000 for the Elena Loaring Memorial Fund for Breast Cancer Research.

A quick monster thanks to all those who have supported me. This past race was incredibly satisfying to finish where I did when I have so many other more important priorities taking place. My goal of a podium finish at Nationals is still very much alive--and there are still many other races that I want to perform well at this year. I might not be able to train as much as I would like--but I will show up with sharpened elbows (in Kelwona) and many rivals (who are all virtually great friends and former training partners at one point) are going to have to be willing to suffer if they want to beat me.

I suffered incredibly in Saturday's race and I am very very sore today. It was damn hot and the body just wanted to throw in the towel but the mind was bloody stubborn. Props to Yorke on a fantastic 6th place finish (I was second Canadian behind him). Props to Bechtel for being such a biking machine. I presented them with one litre of Crown Royal on Saturday night as a tribute for their blood, sweat, and toil. Although I am secretly wishing that they become alcoholics and stop training and racing so well...

Thanks to my Beautiful Bre, and to Pre for lending me his race wheel. His pre-race email really helped. All he has to do is mention 'ika' and I am ready to release the beast within. Thanks to Coach CT for his perfect training program--designed for a busy scrub--and especially for becoming a father on July 11th!

Friday, July 11, 2008

The Lore of Athletic Legend John Loaring

My grandpa Johnny Loaring is shown on the cover with fellow Olympic legends Silken Lauman, Marnie McBean, and Kathleen Heddle.

Below is the article on page 14 of the magazine. Click on the image below to read the full article online.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Karmel Sakran and Mussleman

I am wearing many hats these days, even though I am literally not a hat-wearing chap. This weekend I am diving in with the sharks and racing the ITU Mussleman Pan Amercian Cup Triathlon in Geneva, New York. Although I am ranked 21st entering this race, I am going in with a slightly ambitious attitude and will be fighting for a top 10. I am one of eleven other Canadians on the start list. It will be my first Olympic Distance Tri this year, and first ITU race since August of last year. It is nice to be able to compete in an ITU event that is only a 4h drive from home.

Then the hat will be turned 180 degress and I will go into machine volunteer mode to prep for the July 19th Loaring Tri. The past couple weeks have been busy! I have had to miss a few training sessions, but have been reasonably consistent and the fitness is beginning to come along. I participated in the Karmel Sakran Canada Day 5k Run, finishing in a time of 16:15. Not that fast, but it showed that the running is slowly coming into form. Still lots of work to go--but hopefully I am not too far from holding that pace for 10k when it counts.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Ageless Wonder

Many great stories have come out of the USA Olympic Swimming Trials. Certainly there have been phenomenal performances from the likes of Phelps, Lochte, Hoff, Beard, Peirsol, Spann....

But I believe that the greatest story of these trials concerns 41 year-old mother Dara Torres. Torres came out of a 7 year retirement to win the 100m free yesterday, qualifying for her 5th Olympic Games. In a sport where a 25 year-old is considered 'ancient', Torres has proved that anything is possible. Torres set a WR in the 50m free when she was only 14. It is mind boggling that 27 years have passed and she is still swimming amongst the elite of the elite. The New York Times featured this excellent article here.

Friday, July 4, 2008

Become Human

Inspiring video of fellow PTC training mate Adrian Del Monte.
Produced by Adrian's bro Mikey, who is competing this weekend in the 800m at the Canadian Olympic Trials.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Canadian Track & Field Olympic Trials

The Canadian running community will be very focused on the events that take place in my hometown of Windsor these next few days. The Canadian Track & Field Olympic Trials are underway!

Here is the race website:

Here is the event schedule:

Today's Windsor Star feature article here.

Loaring Physiotherapy will be providing volunteer medical support.

Best of luck to the all athletes, including Speed River and Windsor Legion!