If you’re looking for a new adventure or just a new city to explore Traverse City, Mi is a great destination. Known for its wineries, clear West Grand Traverse Bay waters it’s a top destination for Midwesterners. That said, it didn’t take Ironman long to launch the Ironman 70.3 Traverse City event! With 2019 as the inaugural season, it’s sure to be an action-packed weekend. If you don’t believe me when I say it’s a top destination, the event sold out in 2019 in record time. Only a few foundation spots remain. Therefore, being that it’s a new event there are many questions to be answered, race details, hotel stay, and where to eat. Thankfully, I have visited the area for recommendations, but we have also summarized the need-to-know race details below.
Top Related Race – Ironman 70.3 Waco
Ironman 70.3 Traverse City – Race Details
Traverse City Michigan is known as the largest producer of tart cherries in the United States. At the time of cherry harvest Traverse City hosts the annual week-long National Cherry Festival, which is the first week of July. However, this isn’t the reason you’re considering racing the Ironman 70.3 Traverse City. However, it’s events such as the Cherry Festival that give Traverse city the reason it’s the perfect place to host a 70.3. You’ll find that Traverse City has some of the best freshwater beaches, plenty of state forests, and vineyards. Traverse City has been named as one of the best small towns and even the best place to retire.
Event Details –
Race Day – Aug 25, 2019
On the Friday before race Sunday, Ironman 70.3 Traverse City kicks off with athlete check-in Friday afternoon. You’ll also find that Ironman Village is open, along with the official Ironman store, and the Bike Store and Tech Service. Friday also is the time where you can register your kids for the Ironkids fun run hosted on Saturday.
As Saturday rolls around, you’ll find that Ironman 70.3 Traverse City will be getting quite busy. That said, athletes and kid athletes do still have the ability to register on Saturday. However, if you plan to have your kid or children run the race they must register early as the race begins at 8 am for the Fun Run. After the Fun Run ends you’ll find that Ironman Village, Offical Store, Athlete Check-in, and Bike Tech service are all open Saturday. Therefore, you’ll find that Saturday is a day you have to attend before the race on Sunday. If you can attend Friday’s athlete check-in you may save yourself some time in lines.
However, the one thing you have to attend is the mandatory bike drop off. All bikes must be checked in and in transition before the bike check-in closes on Saturday evening. Don’t forget to attend an athlete briefing season that takes place in Open Space Park. Here is where you’ll find some added rules, times, and race details.
On Sunday, or better known as race day. There will be a shuttle service from the parking lot to the transition area. Which is where body marking, transition, and gear set-up will begin at 5 am. There is an ample amount of time to get your helmet, shoes, and gear situated in transition before the race begins. For age-group athletes, the race will begin with a rolling start at 7:15 am. However, Ironman has sanctioned this event as a pro race, therefore, the pros begin before the age-group rolling start.
Ironman 70.3 Traverse City – Swim
With Ironman 70.3 Traverse City and 2019 being its inaugural season very little information about the course map as more is to come. That said, the swim will take place in West Grand Traverse Bay. The Bay is a 32 miles long and 10 miles wide formed by Leelanau Peninsula that goes out into Lake Michigan. Making the swim one of the most beautiful freshwater swims. Spectators will have the ability to watch athletes as they swim along the Open Space Park before swimmers exit to Clinch Park Beach. Even though the swim is located in Lake Michigan the bay regulates the water temps to an average of 60-70 degrees, and the bay helps block rough waters.
Ironman 70.3 Traverse City – Bike
The Traverse City Ironman 70.3 is one of the newest events, however, the Bike I believe is going to be one that stays in your mind forever. The route begins by taking riders out west of Downtown Traverse City to the foundation of the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore in Empire. Next, riders will turn south and follow the well-known M-22 highway. The course is one of the more unique rides as it has very few turns and is an out-and-back course. The second half of the race is going to be a quick one as you begin the ride backtracking the same course. For many, this will be a great mental aspect to finish strong.
Ironman 70.3 Traverse City – Run
For Ironman 70.3 Traverse City the run course is going to be a little different as it is a 2-loop run. This will provide runners a great view of what is to come on that second lap. The course takes runners along the Boardman Lake’s east side. This should be a great spot to get some shade on the run if the temperatures are warm. This section is an out and back as you’ll head back along the Boardman Lake and hopefully gain a breeze off the lake. As for the finish racers, can expect to finish in front of the historic State Theater in downtown Traverse City, MI.
Places To Stay –
Traverse City is a fast growing city that has near 200,000 people. As the largest producer of tart cherries in the United States, you can find a lot of great summertime events. Located along the eastern shores of Lake Michigan, the city sits along the West & East Arm Grand Traverse Bay. With the Cherry Capital Airport located near town, Traverse City can accommodate numerous visitors. Many hotels are located within walking distance of Open Space Park. However, there are many resorts that are located on the water that serve to be fantastic gateways.
Hotel Indigo Traverse City –
The Hotel Indigo is located as close as you can get to Open Space Park. So if you’re looking for a hotel that is very convenient and easy to navigate from, Hotel Indigo is a great choice. However, when you’re looking for a few extra things to do it’s close to the City Opera House & Dennos Museum Center.
- 5-miles from Airport
- Best Value
- Free WiFi
Hotel Indigo of Traverse City is our #1 choice for triathletes. Guests will find that the modern touches and cleanliness of the hotel is perfect for your Ironman 70.3 weekend, and you’ll find it will be relaxing to know you have a great place to stay.
Park Place Traverse City –
The Park Place Hotel is located right downtown, this is a boutique hotel that offers some of the best views in town. There is even fine dining at Minerva’s restaurant right on-site. Within walking distance, you’ll find plenty of shops, parks, stores, and activities. This hotel is perfect for spectators and it offers easy access to the swim, bike, and run routes.
- Close To Many Attractions
- Highly Rated
- Free WiFi
Park Place is our #2 choice as it can be a little more expensive than the Indigo Hotel. However, if you’re planning on staying a few extra days. The amenities and the lake views from the hotel are breathtaking.
Bayshore Resort Traverse City –
You’ll find the Bayshore Resort is located on the western shores of the West Grand. This is a beachside resort with some of the best views and location out of any resort. Each day they serve a continental breakfast with your accommodations. Now if you want a place where you can get in an early Saturday swim to get in that last training session then the Bayshore Resort is your #1 pick. As guest can relax on the private beach. Plus if you have kids what better way to spend the afternoon or days following the race.
- Select Rooms Have Balcony Views
- On-Site Activites for The Family
- Free WiFi
Bayshore Resort is a top destination for all Traverse City visitors. Whether you’re coming into town to tour some wineries, check out the lake shore, or do your first 70.3 race. The Bayshore Resort is a great selection for the whole family.
Places To Eat –
When you spend a weekend in Traverse City for a 70.3 race you’re going to need to eat. Thankfully, it won’t take you more than a couple of blocks to find some great dining. However, to get you started we have put together a couple of great starting places.
The Dish Cafe –
Located right downtown is The Dish Cafe, which is a great place to find fresh salads, wraps, sandwiches, and flatbreads. If you’re looking for a fresh dining experience with numerous options The Dish Cafe is a great choice. Since 2007, The Dish Cafe has been serving guests and visitors in the area to freshly made entrees. If you’re looking for a casual meal this is our #1 pick.
If you’re in search of some great comfort food that is locally grown and sourced to Traverse City. Then you need to stop at Simon Joseph’s Harvest restaurant. Since 2013, they have been serving some of the freshest foods in the area, such as Korean Beef Tacos and numerous American comfort foods. Be sure to keep an eye out for their food truck that roams the area. As one of the first Traverse City food trucks, you’ll find that they have plenty of “on-your-feet” eating options.