The Barron Lake Triathlon will benefit Steve “Steve-O” Smith when it is held Aug. 30. (Leader file photo)
The Barron Lake Triathlon will benefit Steve “Steve-O” Smith when it is held Aug. 30. (Leader file photo)

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Barron Lake Triathlon to benefit ‘Steve-O’ Smith

Published 8:59am Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Excitement is brewing for the inaugural Barron Lake Triathlon presented by Gurley Leep Hyundai Subaru.

The event will benefit the Racing For Steve-O foundation in honor of Steve (Steve-O) Smith.

The swim, bike and run competition will be held Aug. 30 on Barron Lake in Niles.

There will be sprint and Olympic distances to cater to all levels of athletes from first timers to experienced triathletes. Two and three person relay teams are also available.

The sprint will consist of a 200-yard swim, an 8.3-mile bike ride and a 2.4-mile run.

The Olympic event will consist of a 1,500-meter swim, a 40K bike ride and a 10K run.

The Olympic competition will begin with the first wave at 8 a.m. The sprint will begin will begin immediately following the completion of the swim portion by the Olympic competitors.

Costs are as follows:

• $55 Olympic

• $85 Olympic team

• $45 Sprint

• $75 Sprint team

Youth under 18 will receive a 10 percent discount, as well seniors 65 and older. Online registration is available through Aug. 27. Onsite registration is available Aug. 29 from 5 to 7 p.m. at the Howard Township Fire Department. A USA Triathlon one-day membership fee of $12 is not included in the registration.

You can register at

All proceeds raised will benefit the Racing For Steve-O Foundation.

Racing for Steve-O was founded by triathletes to honor the Smith.

Steve-O, as his triathlete buddies call him, is a 12-time Kona Ironman triathlete with multiple national and world triathlon championship titles. His list of accomplishments is impressive enough for a professional athlete, let alone a 66-year-old amateur.

He’s been competing in triathlons since the mid 1980s with over 250 triathlons under his belt.

He’s also known as “Coach D-Wheez” from his coaching days as the Adam’s high school swim team. Many also remember him as a health and PE teacher for 40 years with South Bend Community School Corporation.

Full of life and the pillar of amazing strength, endurance and true grit, not even an Ironman can avoid the scary “C” word… cancer.

April 24, 2012, Smith was diagnosed with Glioblastoma brain cancer. Currently he survives thanks to chemotherapy treatments he receives every two weeks to slow the growth of the tumor. With an average life expectancy of 15 months, there is no cure.

Although, Glioblastoma hasn’t experienced a warrior like Smith before either. He is beating the odds and has continued fight for almost two years.

When asked what Smith would like to do with all the donations given to his foundation, he wanted to benefit the kids that inspired him the most. So, the “Racing For Steve-O” foundation was formed to reflect his mission of helping Michiana children have opportunities to participate in recreational activities despite any physical, mental or financial challenges they face.

There will be a pair of beginners clinics held prior to the triathlon.

The first one will be at 3 p.m. on July 26 at Pro-Form Bike Shop, 2202 South Bend Ave. in South Bend.

The second will be from 5 to 7 p.m. on Aug. 28 during packet pickup at the Howard Township Fire Department.


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