MEMPHIS, Tenn., Sept. 23, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — Over 2,400 registered triathletes from all 50 states will descend upon Shelby Farms Park, one of the largest urban parks in the country, to compete in the inaugural St. Jude IRONMAN® 70.3® Memphis triathlon on Saturday, Oct. 2, benefiting St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital®.
Among them will be 152 St. Jude Heroes® who made a commitment to fundraise for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital while training for the race. Thanks to community support, families never receive a bill from St. Jude for treatment, travel, housing or food – because all a family should worry about is helping their child live.
The St. Jude IRONMAN 70.3 Memphis event will include a 1.2-mile swim, 56-mile bike ride and a 13.1-mile run.
For St. Jude Hero Chase Grubb, the commitment is deeply personal. In February 2020, his niece, Luxe, was diagnosed with severe aplastic anemia after bruising appeared on her legs and back. Her doctor referred her to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital for treatment, including a bone marrow transplant. Her younger brother, Asher, served as her donor.
“Soon after the world shut down due to the pandemic, Luxe endured 12 months of challenging treatment on top of seclusion in light of her weakened immune system,” said Grubb. “I’m incredibly grateful that St. Jude saved her life. No amount of money I raise could thank St. Jude enough for how they have served my family.”
Now age 7, Luxe is living life to the fullest and enjoys playing soccer. She also wants to launch her own YouTube channel to talk about the video games she likes to play.
“Stories such as Luxe’s are a testament to the perseverance of St. Jude patients as well as the strength of heart seen in our St. Jude Heroes who are champions for the lifesaving mission of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital,” said Richard C. Shadyac Jr., President and CEO of ALSAC, the fundraising and awareness organization for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. “This event will have lasting impact on future generations because funds generated support the new six-year, $11.5 billion strategic expansion plan to accelerate groundbreaking research and treatment happening at St. Jude every day to save lives worldwide.”
St. Jude Hero Scott Sandlin is also training for the St. Jude IRONMAN 70.3 Memphis. He competed in the 2019 IRONMAN® World Championship in Kona, Hawai`i, becoming the first St. Jude Hero® to do so.
“Having St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital as the benefiting charity makes this event so much more than a test of athletic endurance and grit,” said Elizabeth O’Brien, Managing Director, North America for The IRONMAN Group. “Their participation presents the fitness world with an opportunity to race with a much larger purpose, that of saving children around the world facing cancer and other life-threatening diseases. After the necessary postponement of the inaugural event, we are excited to finally be in Memphis hosting an IRONMAN 70.3 triathlon.”
Memphis was announced as a multiyear host city for the IRONMAN 70.3 event in November 2019. After the 2020 event was postponed, endurance athletes have awaited this year’s return to racing, which includes IRONMAN’s Safe Return to Racing enhanced safety guidelines implemented with the latest details found here.
Launched in 2006, the IRONMAN 70.3 Triathlon Series, which consists of a 1.2-mile swim, a 56-mile bike leg and a 13.1-mile run, began offering athletes of all backgrounds and abilities a consistent and first-class race experience at a variety of unique and beautiful venues around the world. The IRONMAN 70.3 continues to grow in locations around the globe each year and has come to embody the spirit, passion and determination of the athletes who take on these difficult and admired races.
About St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital®
St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital is leading the way the world understands, treats and defeats childhood cancer and other life-threatening diseases. Its purpose is clear: Finding cures. Saving children.® It is the only National Cancer Institute-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center devoted solely to children. Treatments invented at St. Jude have helped push the overall childhood cancer survival rate from 20 percent to more than 80 percent since the hospital opened more than 50 years ago. St. Jude won’t stop until no child dies from cancer. St. Jude freely shares the discoveries it makes, and every child saved at St. Jude means doctors and scientists worldwide can use that knowledge to save thousands more children. Families never receive a bill from St. Jude for treatment, travel, housing or food – because all a family should worry about is helping their child live. Visit St. Jude Inspire to discover powerful St. Jude stories of hope, strength, love and kindness. Join the St. Jude mission by visiting stjude.org, liking St. Jude on Facebook, following St. Jude on Twitter, Instagram and TikTok, and subscribing to its YouTube channel.
About The IRONMAN Group
The IRONMAN Group operates a global portfolio of events that includes the IRONMAN® Triathlon Series, the IRONMAN® 70.3® Triathlon Series, the IRONMAN® Virtual Racing™ (VR™) Series, 5150™ Triathlon Series, the Rock ‘n’ Roll® Running Series, the Rock ‘n’ Roll Virtual Running™ Series, IRONKIDS®, World Triathlon Championship Series, premier running events including the Standard Chartered Singapore Marathon™ and The Sun-Herald City2Surf®, Ultra-Trail® World Tour events including Tarawera Ultra and Ultra-Trail Australia™, mountain bike races including the Absa Cape Epic®, road cycling events including Haute Route®, and gravel racing like Gravel Epic®, and other multisport races. The IRONMAN Group is the largest operator of mass participation sports in the world and provides more than a million participants annually the benefits of endurance sports through the company’s vast offerings. Since the inception of the iconic IRONMAN® brand and its first event in 1978, athletes have proven that ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE® by crossing finish lines around the world. Beginning as a single race, The IRONMAN Group has grown to become a global sensation with hundreds of events across 55+ countries. The IRONMAN Group is owned by Advance, a private, family-owned business. For more information, visit www.ironman.com/about-ironman-group.
Advance is a private, family-held business that owns and invests in companies across media, entertainment, technology, communications, education and other promising growth sectors. Our mission is to build the value of our companies over the long-term by fostering growth and innovation. Advance’s portfolio includes Condé Nast, Advance Local, Stage Entertainment, The IRONMAN Group, American City Business Journals, Leaders Group, Turnitin, 1010data and Pop. Together these operating companies employ more than 17,000 people in 29 countries. Advance is also among the largest shareholders in Charter Communications, Discovery and Reddit. For more information visit www.advance.com.
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SOURCE ALSAC/St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital