St. George, Utah-

With less than a week to go before the big event, the IRONMAN World Championships are in dire need of volunteers. The event is scheduled to be held May 3-9, 2022 within St. George, Utah, and the nearby communities. The main race will be held on May 7, 2022.

It is a huge event for all of Southern Utah, Southern Nevada, and Northwestern Arizona as people from all over the world will be flocking to St. George to be competitors, support crews, team members, press, and fans will be actively engaged within the area throughout the week.

Already several competitors have taken temporary residence within the areas and even nearby locally in Mesquite, starting to train to get used to the rugged desert environment. A couple of local Mesquite residents will be participating in the event, including local bike shop “All in Cycles” owner Mike Gomes.

Mike Gomes (with scissors) will be competing in the IRONMAN World Championships in St. George, Utah on May 7, 2022. He is the owner of Mesquite’s bike shop, All in Cycles. (Picture: All in Cycles Ribbon Cutting, May 2019)

“The event is short on volunteers and they need people to help out,” said Gomes. “This is huge for our economy and for the area.”

Gomes has been training for this event for a while and really wants it to go well and smoothly. Especially since it is the first time St. George will be hosting the World Championships.

The World Championships are usually held on the Big Island of Hawaii in Kailua-Kona. However, due to the strict restrictions in Hawaii pertaining to Covid-19 and travel restrictions, the IRONMAN organization moved the event to St. George, Utah which offers areas where the three parts of the race can be held. The race starts out with a 2.4-mile swim (3.86 km), a 112 miles bicycle ride (180.25 km), and finishing with a marathon of 26.22 miles (42.20 km).

The swim part of the race will be held out in Sand Hollow Reservoir and the biking part will start just outside of the state park. It will include rides up to Veyo around by Gunlock, on part of Old Hwy 91, and back into St. George. The last part of the running will go around St. George using Dixie Drive, Snow Canyon Pkwy, Diagonal Lane, and ending nearby the Tabernacle at 100 S. and Main Street.

The Swim Route for the IronMan (©IronMan, https://www.ironman.com)
The IronMan Cycling Route (©IronMan, https://www.ironman.com)
The IronMan Marathon Route (©IronMan, https://www.ironman.com)

Expect multiple road closures, regulated speed areas, lots of law enforcement presence, and more traffic concerns and changes.

This is why volunteers are needed to help regulate traffic, people, and more so the safety of the participants and fans alike is kept.

“We really need the volunteers so this event will benefit the community and everyone will be safe,” said Gomes.

The Ghost Bike Memorial for the Bullard Brothers in Washington City, Utah (courtesy of St. George News, ©St. George News, http://www.stgeorgeutah.com)

This event comes in less than a month after two cyclists were killed while riding the Spring Tour of St. George on April 9, 2022. The two riders, brothers Matthew and Adam Bullard from California, were within the bicycle lane traveling along Telegraph Street in Washington City and were struck behind by a 47-year-old woman driving impaired under the influence of fentanyl. Julie Budge was charged with two counts of automobile homicide, leaving the scene of an accident involving a death, DUI with serious bodily injury, reckless driving, and improper lane travel.

The City of Washington along with several donors have since put up a “Ghost Bike” Memorial of two white bicycles nearby the spot where the two brothers were killed.

Joey M. with Red Rock Bicycles who sponsored the Spring Tour of St. George event just relayed the importance of awareness.

“Drivers, be careful on the road and be aware of bicyclists,” said Joey. “Bicyclists nowadays have to be super defensive, super cautious, and super aware. It shouldn’t have to be that way as we all have to share the roads together.”

Thus, volunteers are needed to help ensure safety after such a tragedy occurred within Southern Utah. The Intermountain Healthcare IRONMAN World Championship presented by Utah Sports Commission aims to take all precautions to ensure the safety of both the competitors and the spectators. If interested in volunteering fill out and submit the volunteer form found at the following link:

https://ironman.volunteerlocal.com/volunteer/?id=59923

For more information about sales or rentals from the local Mesquite bike shop, All in Cycles, you can visit their website at https://allincycling.com/ or in-person at 1085 W Pioneer Blvd Ste 170, Mesquite.

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