Austin paratriathlete Patricia Walsh will compete Saturday in the 2015 ITU World Paratriathlon event in Rio de Janeiro.
Walsh, who is blind, will swim 750 meters, bike 20 kilometers and run 5 kilometers on the proposed course for next year’s Paralympic Games. She’ll compete alongside a guide, who will lead her through the water, steer her bike and run at her side.
Races will take place throughout the day Saturday at Copacabana Beach. No live broadcast will be available, but live timing updates will be posted here, and U.S.-specific live updates will be shared on Twitter.
The points season just opened for paratriathletes, and the event is the second opportunity for paratriathletes to earn points toward the Paralympic qualification process. Only one U.S. paratriathlete per sport class will be eligible to qualify for the U.S. Paralympic Triathlon Team in Rio.
The sport will make its Paralympic Games debut next September in Rio de Janeiro, and athletes racing this weekend will have the advantage of testing the course as they compete for qualification points and a potential spot on the U.S. Paralympic Triathlon Team.
Walsh is among 10 American paratriathletes who will be racing in Saturday’s test event. She is a two-time ITU World Championships medalist and two-time World Paratriathlon Event champion. She competes in the women’s PT5 (visually impaired) sport class.
For more information about each sport class and world rankings go here.