Wisconsin’s Oldest Triathlon Shifts Gears

Wisconsin’s Oldest Triathlon Shifts Gears 

WAUSAU - The Woodson YMCA Triathlon will celebrate its 40th and final year on the roads of Wausau this summer. Recognizing the unique outdoor amenities in Wausau, the event will shift from a traditional on-road triathlon to an off-road race.

Off-road triathlons are gaining in popularity, and Bryan Bailey, YMCA CEO, saw partnering with IRONBULL to host an off-road triathlon as an opportunity to grow.

“Although the Woodson YMCA Triathlon is the oldest triathlon in our great state, the IRONBULL Xtreme Triathlon will bring a fresh and exciting new event to our area.” said Bailey.

Racecourse designers will showcase the top venues in the Midwest for each portion of the race. Two courses will allow both elite athletes to be challenged and racers of all ages and ability levels to participate. Racers will start off in water, but instead of a traditional swim, will be paddling kayaks.  Racers will paddle down the Wisconsin River and across Lake Wausau with elite division racers tested through downtown Wausau’s world-class kayak course prior to being spit out into Lake Wausau. Racers will continue through an epic course, hitting top-notch trails on foot at Rib Mountain State Park and on bike at Nine Mile County Forest.  

Longstanding Woodson YMCA Triathlon race director, Shannon Ramsey, is excited to work with IRONBULL. Ramsey will be collaborating with Andrea Larson, executive director of IRONBULL and a past age group winner in the Woodson YMCA triathlon, to serve as co-race directors.   

“Transforming our triathlon off-road will highlight the awesome trails and waterways in the heart of our community, allowing our racers to enjoy Wausau in a new way,” stated Ramsey.

This Xtreme Triathlon will still be held the first Saturday in August, with a planned expansion into an entire weekend of events on the 400 Block as part of an Xtreme Weekend to promote healthy lifestyle.  These events will draw community members and visitors of all ages to Wausau’s downtown.

The IRONBULL Xtreme Triathlon will be held on August 1, 2020 with proceeds to benefit the YMCA’s youth programs as well as to other partner organizations such as the Wausau and Marathon County Parks and Recreation Foundation.

IRONBULL™ is a non-profit 501(c)(3) extreme off-road race organization that develops, hosts and sponsors extreme racing venues: ultra-marathons, off-road triathlons, gravel and downhill mountain bike races, adventure races and paddling events.

Woodson Young Men’s Christian Association, Inc. is a non-profit 501(3)(c) organization to put Christian principles into practice through programs that build healthy spirit, mind and body for all.  Woodson YMCA is a values-driven organization with a mission to foster youth development, healthy living, and social responsibility through outdoor educational and recreational programs for all. 

Contact Information:

Andrea Larson – Executive Director
200 Washington Street, Suite 200
PO Box 957
Wausau, WI 54402-0957


Woodson YMCA
707 3rd St
Wausau, WI 54403