On Saturday, May 2, 2015, local athletes and fans proudly redefined the term “winging it” at the first annual Wingathlon, a duathlon and family 5K event that took place in Newtown to raise funds for Dylan’s Wings of Change.
By all accounts, the inaugural event was a tremendous success. Bright sunshine and cool temperatures greeted participants upon arrival at the Fairfield Hills campus, and the event itself kicked off with a moving performance of the National Anthem sung by the Newtown High School Chamber Choir.
More than 40 athletes completed the duathlon, a challenging 3-mile run/15-mile cycle/3-mile run that stretched from Fairfield Hills out through the winding streets of Newtown and south toward the Monroe line before returning to campus. The duathletes loved the challenging nature of the course early in the race season, making for a great tune-up in preparation for the summer ahead.
The winner of the duathlon was Greg Pelican from Washington Depot with a time of 1:21.55. The top female finisher was Sue Fleming from Ridgefield with a time of 1:32.12. Both received Cannondale gift vouchers, and the top 5 male and female duathletes also each received a Cannondale cycling helmet.
During the cycling portion of the duathlon, more than 170 runners and walkers took part in the family 5K around the Fairfield Hills campus. Newtown 7th grader Nick Jacobs won the 5K with a time of 18:48. The top three finishers in each age bracket received special medals—and everyone crossing the line received a commemorative “Wingathlon Finisher” medal.
If the athletes helped this first Wingathlon take flight, our event sponsors took the event even higher. The Cannondale roadshow set the event’s backdrop with over 40 performance racing cycles, with the company also providing water bottles for every participant’s gift bag. Special thanks also to SkullCandy for donating 300 high-performance earbuds for participant gift bags, as well.
The team from Cover 2 Sports Bar in Sandy Hook, CT, served free chicken wings to all. Generous donations of beverages from V8 and Dunkin Donuts—plus food from Bagel Delight and Stop & Shop in Newtown—fueled the crowd throughout the event.
Finally, much thanks to Terence of Sandy Hook Cyclery, who provided free cycle tune-ups to participants, and to LiveWell Chiropractic of Newtown—which provided much-appreciated sports massage and physio-therapy services to everyone in attendance.
All funds raised will be used to award grants to organizations that meet the mission of Dylan’s Wings of Change, and to support Wingman and other programs designed to help children with autism and related conditions reach their full potential.
To view exciting photos from this year's Wingathlon, click here: Wingathlon Photos. We look forward to seeing you at next year’s Wingathlon!