Athletes from around the country came to Frankfort this weekend for the village’s first-ever Ironman 70.3 Michigan race. The half triathlon consisted of 1.2 miles of swimming, 56 miles of biking, and 13.1 miles of running for a total of 70.3 miles.

“It was inspirational,” said Trevor Tkach, President of Traverse City Tourism, one of the event sponsors. “There is a very positive feeling throughout the town. Competitors were telling me they loved the course and were looking forward to returning next year.” Ironman organizers have been planning the event for more than a year-and-a-half, since the event was planned for 2020, but cancelled due to the pandemic.

“This comes at a perfect time for Frankfort and all of the region,” said Tkach. "We saw these athletes and their supporters come to the region, enjoy our hotels, restaurants, and shops and take in the beauty of the area. It has been a great way to wind down what has been a strong summer."

Tkach added that Ironman exemplifies why people are attracted to the region. “This is who we are,” Tkach added. “It’s the type of event that showcases the passion we have for fitness, health, and being outside in a beautiful place. It’s a perfect fit.”

While final numbers are not in yet, several local charities used the event to fundraise and increase awareness. Five charities, Paul Oliver Memorial Hospital, Friends of the Betsie Valley Trail, Munson Manor Hospitality House, Frankfort Lighthouse and Single MOMM, took part in the Ironman Charity Challenge. So far they have raised over $42,000. Donations can still be made at https://www.traversecity.com/ironman-charity-challenge/charities/. In addition, other charities volunteered during the race and will share thousands of dollars from the Ironman Foundation.

Race results are available at https://www.ironman.com/im703-michigan-results

Ironman 70.3 Michigan is tentatively planned to return to Frankfort next year and scheduled for September 11th.

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