Quantico Tri: Hundreds to swim, bike, run through Va. Marine Corps base

Swimmers compete in the 2016 Quantico Tri. (Courtesy Marine Corps Marathon)
Swimmers compete in the 2016 Quantico Tri. (Courtesy Marine Corps Marathon)

A competitor at the 2016 Quantico Tri. The 2017 event takes place Aug. 26. (Courtesy Marine Corps Marathon)


Competitors set out at the start of the 2016 Quantico Tri. (Courtesy Marine Corps Marathon)

Cyclist during the 2016 Quantico Tri event.

A 2016 Quantico Tri finisher.

A competitor races to the finish line of the Quantico 12K race in 2016.

Swimmers compete in the 2016 Quantico Tri. (Courtesy Marine Corps Marathon)

WASHINGTON — This weekend, about 1,300 participants will swim, bike and run their way through the Quantico Tri and 12K events at the Officer Candidates School on the Virginia Marine Corps base.

The Quantico Tri, a “sprint triathlon” on Saturday, Aug. 26, challenges about 600 participants in a 750-meter open-water swim in the Potomac River, a 20 kilometers (12.4 miles) biking portion and a 5K (3.1-mile) run.

“The Quantico Marine Corps base is very well-suited to a sprint tri,” said Marine Corps Marathon spokeswoman Tami Faram said of the event, which has been at the base since 2013.

“We found it has got a great section for … the open water swim, and the bike and the run all in one area. So it makes it really nice for the athletes and their families to participate.”

In addition to a triathlon, the 12K (7.4-mile) race will also be on the base. It’s the second year for the event.

About 700 runners will compete in the 12K race that takes them on a course through the wooded side of Officer Candidates School on Marine Corps Base Quantico. While the courses are much different for the two events, the 12K and the Quantico Tri will finish at the same location on the base.

“[The triathlon] presents challenges because you’re doing a combined event with three separate events into one. Where the 12K is a unique run that we hold as a good training run prior to the Marine Corps Marathon this October,” Faram said. “So you’re running over seven miles and that’s a good training run in August before you go on your longer training runs for the Marine Corps Marathon.”

The two events have reached capacity, meaning no one else can sign up, Faram said Wednesday.

Both events include participants from 22 states in the U.S. as well as some from Canada and Australia, too, Faram said.

Road closures

The benefit of hosting events almost entirely on Marine Corps Base Quantico is that it has a small traffic impact on the community outside the base, Faram said.

“After certain times there may be limited entrance, but there’s nothing really closed on Quanitco for this, which is great,” Faram said.

See the course map and road closures in the map below:

Quantico Tri (click on image to view it larger)

12K (click on image to view it larger)

Editor’s note: This story has been updated to reflect that the Quantico Tri and 12K events are sold out.

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