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Inaugural fitness challenge draws 102 participants

The inaugural Nolichucky Triple Threat, which was held on Saturday, Sept. 19, went off without a hitch, according to an event coordinator.
“The Nolichucky Triple Threat was a very successful event,” Unicoi County Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Amanda Delp said. “We had 102 participants.”
Delp said the competitors came from across northeast Tennessee and as far away as Nashville to participate in the outdoor fitness challenge that combined rafting, an obstacle course and a 5K run, part of which took place on the Appalachian Trail.
“With the growing popularity of fitness challenges across the country, the Chamber saw a unique opportunity to coordinate the Nolichucky Triple Threat in Unicoi County,” Delp said. “The Chamber’s initial vision for this event was to create a competitive adventure like no other that would utilize and showcase the county’s two major recreational anchors – the Nolichucky River and the Appalachian Trail.”
Competitors entered the Nolichucky River on the property of USA Raft and traveled 1.5 miles down the river before going ashore.
Once they reached the shore, the timing portion of the triathlon began. Competitors had to make their way through almost 20 obstacles designed to test their strength and agility. The obstacles included a sand crawl, balance beam and monkey bars.
Once completing the obstacle course, competitors then ran a 5K back to USA Raft.
Delp said the Chamber plans to hold the Nolichucky Triple Threat again next year.
“We will probably have it in either July or August,” she added. “We hope all the participants will return and even more people will decide to participate.”
Delp also said she believes the event can become an important tourist draw for the county.
“When the racers came from out of town they stayed with their families in our hotels and campgrounds,” she said. “They visited our restaurants and shops and spent money in Unicoi County. As this event grows and we bring in more and more participants, that is more revenue for the county.”
Delp also said the Chamber would like to thank USA Raft and iTrain Fitness, as well as all of the volunteers, for their assistance with the event.
The top 10 finishers in the male race, listed one through 10, were: Mantle Roth, Ross Garland, Brandon Belcher, Brad Vaughn, Gabe Simerly, Chris Phillips, David Storm, Benjamin Caldwell, Garrett Wright and Holden Cutshall.
The top 10 finishers in the female race, listed one through 10, were: Sarah Bailey, Michelle Lee, Sarah Thompson, Steph Schools, Kim Hyder, Jennifer Bradley, Amber Wilkinson, Shannon Rowe, Janey Reid and Deanna Oaks.