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Tri Digest Bulletin: A $500,000 race announced

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  • katherine@midmaine.com
    Tri Digest Bulletin: Triathlon s $500,000 Race Thursday, March 6, 2003 Published by Katherine Williams (mailto:katherine@midmaine.com) Triathlon in America was
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      Tri Digest Bulletin: Triathlon's $500,000 Race
      Thursday, March 6, 2003
      Published by Katherine Williams (mailto:katherine@...)

      Triathlon in America was transformed into a major-league-money sport on
      Tuesday with a Minnesota company's announcement of a $500,000 race, the Life
      Time Fitness Triathlon for Saturday, August 2.

      Life Time Fitness officials joined Minnesota governor Tim Pawlenty and the
      mayor of Minneapolis, RT Rybak, in announcing the second-year event, which
      features a first prize of $250,000.

      The race also will be broadcast live for 90 minutes with NBC's network
      television. The national coverage on NBC Sports from 1:00 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.
      (Central Time) underscores Life Time Fitness’ commitment to heighten the
      profile of and participation in the sport of triathlon.

      The record-setting purse is the largest ever in the history of triathlon. Of
      the $500,000 total, the top five finishers will receive $250,000 (first);
      $50,000 (second); $35,000 (third); $25,000 (fourth); and $20,000 (fifth).

      Cash will be awarded to the overall top 12 professional women and top 12
      professional men.

      The event features “The Equalizer,” a unique timing structure that allows
      professional women and men to compete on equal ground. Based on past Life
      Time Fitness Triathlon course results, as well as the outcomes from a number
      of world and American international-distance events, The Equalizer allows
      pro women to start ahead of pro men by a predetermined amount of time,
      resulting in a new and innovative competition format, and a dramatic
      “battle-of-the-sexes” race to the finish.

      Professional triathletes Becky Gibbs Lavelle, a Minnesota native, and Craig
      Walton of Australia -– the second- and third-place finishers respectively in
      last year’s Life Time Fitness Triathlon -– also attended the press
      conference. Both have already committed to this year's race.

      Said Bahram Akradi, founder and CEO of Life Time Fitness, Inc.: "The 2002
      Life Time Fitness Triathlon set a new benchmark for the sport of triathlon.
      In 2003, we’re raising the bar by both increasing our prize purse to
      historic levels and presenting this year’s event to a large national viewing
      audience on NBC Sports.

      "At the same time, our unique “battle of the sexes” timing format brings
      intense excitement and drama unparalleled in other sporting events of its
      kind.”

      The race couse starts and ends at Minneapolis’ Lake Nokomis, covering a
      27-mile path within the city’s parkway system. Both short- and
      international-distance courses will be offered. The short-distance course
      includes a .4-mile swim, 10-mile bike race and a 2.1-mile run. The
      international-distance course features a .75-mile swim, 21.3-mile bike race
      and 4.7-mile run.

      The Event also is a part of the Minneapolis Aquatennial, a 10-day premier
      Twin Cities civic celebration that upholds a 63-year community tradition and
      hosts more than 800,000 visitors.

      With hundreds of participants already registered, Life Time Fitness
      Triathlon organizers expect a full field of 2,000-plus. For more information
      about the Life Time Fitness Triathlon or to register online, visit
      (http://www.lifetimefitness.com).

      Life Time Fitness, Inc. is a privately held health, fitness and nutrition
      company with 29 sports, fitness and recreation centers in Minnesota,
      Illinois, Michigan, Ohio, Indiana and Washington DC.

      In last year's Life Time Fitness race, which gave away $179,000 in prize
      money, overall winner Barb Lindquist won the top prize of $50,000. This
      year's first prize will be worth five times that amount.

      ---
      End of Tri Digest Bulletin.
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