The 7th annual Duxbury Beach Triathlon will start this Saturday at 10:30 am at the west end of the Powder Point Bridge. Duxbury has over 150 participants among the 700 competitors from around the country expected to toe the starting line.

The 7th annual Duxbury Beach Triathlon will start this Saturday at 10:30 am at the west end of the Powder Point Bridge. Duxbury has over 150 participants among the 700 competitors from around the country expected to toe the starting line.

Last year U.S. Olympian Jarrod Shoemaker was the overall winner, but he will be in Germany competing in another competition that same weekend. His wife, Alicia Kaye, will be present to defend the women’s title, but she will have her hands full with triathlon legend Karen Smyers, a world champion and Hawaii Ironman Champion, who has promised to make amends for her fourth-place finish last year.

“I am looking forward to giving the youngsters a better run for the finish line,” Smyers told race director Brian Noyes via e-mail.

Recent Lake Placid Ironman champion Cait Snow will give both of them a run for their money, as she is in preparation for her first trip to Kona and the Hawaii Ironman World Championships and is expected to be ready to retake her 2005-06 Duxbury champion title.

The men’s field may be without a marquee name, but the field assembled may be one of the deepest in New England with the exception of the Timberman Half-Ironman in New Hampshire. Janda Ricci-Munn (6th at Timberman), Ethan Brown (1st at Plymouth), and others will be facing off for a first-place cash prize of $250 with cash incentives to beat the top male team.

But Duxbury is not without its own outstanding triathletes. Tod Dillon will be racing and is heading to Kona for the Hawaii Ironman event in October. Ian Dargin just returned from the ITU (International Triathlon Union) World Championships in Holland, while locals Jim Bunnell, Carol Shores and Kathleen Richards have completed similar Ironman events earlier this year.

However, it’s the weekend wThrough the efforts of everyone involved over the years, the Duxbury Beach Triathlon has become one of the most popular events in New England, as evidenced by the fact that over 50 participants were willing to enter through the Charity entry program. Each participant made a donation of $200 each that was divided between the Mass. Special Olympics and the Parent Project Muscular Dystrophy. Nearly $11,000 has already been given to those charities and the Duxbury Police Athletic League will also benefit from the triathlon.

Residents are advised to bear in mind that the cycling portion of the triathlon will travel down Powder Point Ave and along Washington St., continuing on down Bay Road and up and around the Standish Monument from approximately 10:45 a.m. until 12 noon.

In addition, the bridge will be closed to all traffic from 10:30 a.m. through the finish of the event at about 12:30 p.m. and beach traffic will be detoured through Marshfield onto Gurnet Road. No parking is allowed at the main beach lot until the finish of the event. Parking is available at Blakeman’s lot.