Challenged Athletes Foundation to Host 21ST Annual Aspen Medical Products San Diego Triathlon Challenge

Athletes with Physical Challenges, Celebrities and Professional Athletes to Participate Side-by-side at “Best Day in Triathlon,” October 19, 2014 at La Jolla Cove

Rudy Garcia-Tolson and Marko Cheseto, two double amputees cross the finish line at the Aspen Medical Products San Diego Triathlon Challenge (Photo: Business Wire)

SAN DIEGO--()--The Challenged Athletes Foundation® (CAF), a world-leader in helping individuals with physical challenges get involved in sports, will welcome more than 2,500 supporters, spectators and participants to La Jolla Cove for its 21st Annual Aspen Medical Products San Diego Triathlon Challenge (SDTC). The day-long event, which also includes the 24 Hour Fitness Tour de Cove cycling marathon, Kaiser Permanente Thrive-5K Fitness Walk, Philadelphia Insurance Kids’ Run and Wawanesa Family Fun Zone, is a family friendly event and welcomes spectators and public support. The events will raise more than $1 million to help physically challenged individuals get the support needed to succeed in sports and in life.

The Aspen Medical Products San Diego Triathlon Challenge, which began 21 years ago as a small fundraiser to help a local injured triathlete, has grown to be known as the “Best Day in Triathlon” and helped CAF raise more than $55 million. It features a “challenge” distance triathlon (a 1-mile swim, 44-mile bike, and 10-mile run) in which more than 200 challenged athletes will compete side-by-side with 500 able-bodied athletes. From injured veterans to children born with physical challenges, each year SDTC welcomes athletes of all ages and abilities to provide an uplifting experience and showcase what is possible for challenged athletes. This year, the event will include a special tribute to long-time CAF supporter Robin Williams. Other key participants will include celebrities and sports legends such as:

  • Boston Marathon Survivors Celeste Corcoran and Roseann Sdoia
  • NBA Hall of Famer Bill Walton
  • Ironman World Champion Kathleen McCartney
  • Two-time Ironman World Champion and legend Scott Tinley
  • Pro-triathletes Heather Fuhr, Luke McKenzie and Meredith Kessler
  • Actors Kevin Compayre and David James Elliott
  • Two-time Xterra World Champion, cancer survivor and world champion paracyclist Jamie Whitmore
  • Bob Babbitt, CAF Co-founder and Co-founder of Competitor magazine
  • Challenged athlete, author and reality TV star Sarah Reinertsen of The Amazing Race
  • Rules of Engagement actress Bianca Kajlich
  • More than 25 members of CAF’s Operation Rebound® program, which supports permanently injured military and first responders

The triathlon itself is the culmination of a full weekend of events. Challenged athletes of all ages and abilities from around the world travel to La Jolla for this unique event. To provide additional support to these challenged athletes, CAF will conduct five sports clinics Friday, Oct. 17 and Saturday, Oct. 18. Each free clinic is designed to teach challenged athletes the skills and confidence they need to reach their fitness and athletic goals. These clinics include the CAF Kid’s Surf Clinic, CAF Össur Leg Amputee Running and Mobility Clinic, Wheelchair Triathlon Clinic, Challenged Athlete Swim Clinic, and Kids’ Wheelchair Slalom Clinic.

Funds raised over the course of the weekend will allow CAF to support challenged athletes by providing grants for adaptive sports equipment, training and competition expenses so they can live active lifestyles and participate in sports. In addition, the Aspen Medical Products San Diego Triathlon Challenge works to promote CAF’s mission to raise awareness and change perceptions of what is possible for people with physical challenged. By participating in the triathlon, cycling marathon, 5K and kids run, more than 200 challenged athletes will demonstrate that there truly are no limits.

This event is made possible thanks to CAF’s many supporters and sponsors including Aspen Medical Products, Xterra Wetsuits, Converse, Philadelphia Insurance Companies, Nike, Lusardi Construction, Kaiser Permanente, Union Bank, Vavi, DJO Global, Inc., LAK Advertising, VDP Direct, Alphatec Spine, Headsweats, Össur, Wells Fargo, Built With Chocolate Milk, United Healthcare, SPY, Lifeproof, Nytro, , MuscleAid Tape, Clif Bar, Lock Laces, La Jolla Beach & Tennis Club, Swiftwick, Callaway Golf, Hanger, Oakley, TYR, Specialized, Paul Mitchell, GU Energy, Modern Postcard, La Valencia Hotel, Kinsesys, Sock Guy, La Jolla Shores Hotel, Independent, Riviera Paddlesurf, Sierra Nevada, LAZ Parking, ZICO Pure Coconut Water, Hughes Marino, La Jolla Cove Suites.

Key Moments & Special Presentations

7:00 a.m.

      Parade of Athletes, including introduction of legends, celebrities, challenged athletes and recent Paralympians

7:25 a.m.

Tribute to CAF-supporter Robin Williams

7:30 a.m.

National Anthem

8:00 a.m.

Swim Start

8:20 a.m.

Hot Corner with Celebrity and VIP Relay Team Tag-offs

9:00 a.m.

Start of the 24 Hour Fitness Tour de Cove

10:00 a.m.

Philadelphia Insurance Challenged Athletes Kids Run

11:30 a.m.

Special Presentation #1: Presentation of an Ossur running foot to 9-year old Ella, who last Christmas asked Santa for a friend with a prosthesis like her. CAF introduced her to other challenged athletes and now will get her running with them.

1:00 p.m.

Special Presentation #2: Presentation of a handcycle to Leroy Sutton, now a Paralympic athlete who lost his legs in a train accident at age 11 and has been featured on ESPN.

2:15 p.m.

Special Presentation #3: Presentation of a BOX Wheelchair to 3 year old Abel Rose, who is nicknamed “Fearless” as there is nothing he won’t try,

2:30 p.m.

Awards BBQ and check presentations at La Jolla Bridge Club

To follow SDTC on Twitter, go to @CAFoundation or #BestDayInTri.

The Challenged Athletes Foundation® (CAF) is a world leader in helping individuals with physical challenges get involved – and stay involved – in sports. CAF believes that participation in sports at any level increases self-esteem, encourages independence and enhances quality of life. Since 1994, close to $55 million has been raised and almost 9,500 funding requests from challenged athletes in all 50 states and dozens of countries have been satisfied. Additionally, CAF’s outreach efforts reach another 60,000 individuals each year. Whether it’s a $2,500 grant for a handcycle, helping underwrite a carbon fiber running foot not covered by insurance, or arranging enthusiastic encouragement from a mentor who has triumphed over a similar challenge, CAF’s mission is clear: give those with the desire to live active, athletic lifestyles every opportunity to compete in the sports they love. To learn more, log on to or call 858-866-0959.


Challenged Athletes Foundation®
Jenna Novotny
Office: 858.210.3528
Mobile: 619.985.6583


Challenged Athletes Foundation®
Jenna Novotny
Office: 858.210.3528
Mobile: 619.985.6583