PORT ANGELES — Prepare for an unparalleled celebration of athleticism, camaraderie and sheer determination as The Big Hurt multisport weekend makes its return on Sept. 23-24.
Sound Bikes & Kayaks is the title sponsor again this year, and a portion of proceeds from The Big Hurt will go right back into the community to support the Olympic Discovery Trail.
At least 300 athletes and their guests will visit Port Angeles from the Pacific Northwest Region, as well as from Wisconsin, Texas, Utah, Montana, California and Colorado.
“This is also the first year since we brought Big Hurt back in 2015 that we’ve had more than one Canadian. So far, the race has five Iron Division competitors from [British Columbia] and Alberta, as well as a number of teams, mostly tandem teams, such as team “Hurtin4Certain” from Surrey, B.C., and “Operation Pina Colada” from Vancouver, B.C. We know our local athletes will show our Canadian neighbors a really warm welcome and fun time at the race,” said Race Director Lorrie Mittmann.
Participants can choose from a variety of race options tailored to their interests and abilities. They can compete solo in the Iron Division or on two- to four-person relay teams. There is a Masters division for participants over the age of 50, including in the team division. The Big Hurt consists of four legs: 15 miles of mountain biking, 2.6 miles of kayaking/paddle boarding, 30 miles of road cycling, and a 10K run along the Olympic Discovery Trail.
Registration will be open until Sept. 22, but participants will need to register before Sept. 3 if they would like to be guaranteed an event T-shirt, or one in their accurate size. There is also a price increase happening Friday.
“This is more than just a race — it’s a multi-sport experience that celebrates perseverance, competition and camaraderie. Big Hurt is unique in multi-leg events because it has all of the leg transitions in one location. This makes for a fun all-day party atmosphere at the transition zone, with team members cheering each other on, as well as cheering for the other teams and Iron Division competitors,” Mittmann said.
The transition zone, finish line and race hub will be located at Pebble Beach park in downtown Port Angeles, right next to the newly opened Field Arts and Events Hall.
“While we will have an area of the park dedicated just to the athletes and their gear, we will also have plenty of space and fun for spectators. We will have a beer garden hosted by and benefiting 4PA, as well as a band in the afternoon called Substantially Fly,” said Tom Michowski of Bike Garage.
There are also lots of added perks for racers this year. Registered participants will get 15 percent off at Title Sponsor Sound Bikes and Kayak, free entry to FallFest at Extreme Sports Park, which is happening the same weekend, special rates at Olympic Lodge, and new for 2023 there will be ActiveTrack livestreaming on the course that everyone will have access to view, as well as an opportunity to sign up for LiveTracking so that friends, family and team members can see exactly where people are on the course.
On Sept. 24, first- through eighth-graders are invited to compete in the Little Hurt, a multi-sport event designed to expose kids to multiple sports and to encourage participation in healthy activities that take advantage of the infrastructure and organizations available in the community. This event will take place at Peninsula College this year.
The Little Hurt event is supported and organized via a partnership between Peninsula Adventure Sports (producers of the Big Hurt), Olympic Peninsula Rowing Association, and sponsors Bike Garage and Phoenix Dragon Martial Arts.
The Little Hurt includes three legs — cycling around the Peninsula College campus, rowing on machines provided by the Olympic Peninsula Rowing Association, and trail running in the woods just south of the main campus. Each participant does all of the legs. The race legs will be divided by grades. All Little Hurt participants receive a T-shirt, medal and sticker.
For registration, event details and additional information about The Big Hurt, people can visit www.bighurtpa.com.