OLD ORCHARD BEACH — Athletes from all over the world will descend on Old Orchard Beach on Sunday for the annual Ironman 70.3 Maine triathlon. Race officials are busy preparing for the race and volunteers are still needed to help staff the event.
The triathlon starts with a 1.2-mile swim in the Atlantic Ocean near The Pier in Old Orchard Beach, followed by a 56-mile bicycle ride that loops through Old Orchard Beach, Saco, Scarborough, Hollis, Waterboro and Buxton; followed by a 13.1-mile run through Old Orchard Beach and on the Eastern Trail.
The top 40 finishers will be eligible for a qualifying slot at the 2020 Ironman 70.3 World Championship in Taupō, New Zealand.
The town has listed traffic impacts, road closures and parking lot closures for the upcoming days.
The Veterans Memorial Parking lot and tennis courts on First Street are currently closed through Sunday. The town parking lot on Milliken Street will be partly open Thursday and Friday, with 50 spaces available only for cars with Old Orchard Beach issued parking permits. The municipal lot on Milliken Street will be closed on Saturday and Sunday.
First Street will be closed from Staples Street to Heath Street from Friday to Sunday.
Motorists are urged to avoid the area around East Grand Avenue and Walnut Street from 6:15-8 a.m. on Sunday while the swim segment is being held.
Motorists are advised to avoid the Old Orchard and Milliken street areas from 6:45 a.m. to 3 p.m on Sunday during the bicycle and running segments of the race.
In Saco, police will be directing traffic at several intersections in the city from 6 a.m. to noon on Sunday.
Areas in Saco that are expected to have delays include the intersection of Louden and Buxton roads, New County and Louden roads, Jenkins and Buxton roads and Flag Pond and Jenkins roads.
The triathlon will proceed with the support of hundreds of volunteers, with donations being made to local nonprofit organizations in exchange for the work.
Volunteers are still needed Friday through Sunday for a number of positions including checking in athletes, food preparation, bike course pointers and cross walk security. For more information on volunteering, go to: https://ironman.volunteerlocal.com/volunteer/?id=34584.
Liz Gotthelf — 207-780-9015
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