Posted by: Heart of America News | July 30, 2014

Camp Courageous 2014 — Racing For A Great Cause

by Ron Adkins

2013-08-04 12.34.42Heart of America Triathlon News

Triathletes statewide are getting set for what is arguably the most fulfilling race of the season. The 2014 Camp Courageous Triathlon kicks off Sunday, August 3 at Central Park near Amber, Iowa.

According to race director Nick Gearhart, water conditions for the 500-yard swim in Central Park Lake are very good for this time of year. At last check, the lake temperature was 74 degrees – the lowest in quite a while. Gearhart predicts a wetsuit-legal swim on race day. After driving the 15.5-mile out-and-back bike and 5k run courses, he is also happy to report that both are in great shape, now that the Iowa rainy season has subsided. “The run course is 100 percent improved over last year,” he said.

Registrations are running consistent with last year’s numbers, and Gearhart is working hard to fill another 50 or 60 more spots by helping teams find needed members. Many of those registered for this year’s tri are repeaters from previous years, including 2013 men’s champion Barry Breffle of Cedar Rapids, who is returning to defend his title.

“It’s going to be a great event,” said Gearhart. “The weather is near-perfect, with low heat and humidity.”

The race director since the Camp Courageous Tri’s inception in 2010, Gearhart credits an amazing board of directors and legions of volunteers for making the race so popular with Heart of America triathletes. “Everyone has their own area of expertise, so I never have to micromanage. It really is a labor of love.”

Nick Gearhart

Nick Gearhart

And seeing so many returning competitors each year, he added, “makes it all worthwhile. It’s great to see so many come out to support Camp Courageous.”

Proceeds from the race go to support Camp Courageous, a non-profit, year-round respite care and recreational facility for people of all ages with disabilities. Founded in 1972 on 40 acres of donated land near Monticello, Iowa, Camp Courageous has expanded to 150 acres and now serves thousands each year.

The Camp continues to run almost exclusively on donations. It receives no government assistance and is not affiliated with any agency. No camper is ever turned down due to inability to pay.

To learn more about Camp Courageous, its programs and its mission, log on to

For more information on the Camp Courageous Triathlon, check out


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