New York City triathletes braved scorching temperatures Sunday as a heatwave continued to bake the Big Apple — but some participants brushed aside the extreme weather.
Race organizers had shortened the event’s biking part from 24.8 to 12.4 miles and its running event from 6.2 miles to 2.5 miles due to the heatwave, which stretched into its sixth day.
Brazil native Danilo Pimentel, who won the men’s competition, told The Post the race was no sweat.
“I was born in the Amazon, this heat is normal! I don’t need preparation for these conditions,” said the 35-year-old.
“They did really well, the course is really tough, the up and down hills,” he said of his competitors.
The winner of the women’s professional race, Amy Cymerman of Rochester, conceded, “I was a little hot to be honest.”
But the 30-year-old pro said she was prepared for the boiling temperatures.
“I was hydrating the whole time with water and electrolytes, and I was in bed by 7:30 last night!” she said.
Still, she noted, “I would have loved a 10K, I’m not gonna lie.”
Athletes were off to the races Sunday at 6:30 a.m. — 40 minutes after its scheduled start time — when the temperature was already in the low eighties.
“While it is disappointing to reduce the length of both races, our number one priority is to do all we can to ensure the safety and wellbeing of our competitors, volunteers, medical personnel and spectators,” the New York City Triathlon announced via a Facebook post on Thursday.
Tim Cranston, 68, who traveled from Denver, Colorado for the race, lamented that the race’s length was reduced.
“It’s too bad they cut it in half! It started 40 min late and there was no current for the swim, which makes it a lot harder, but over half the athletes were first timers and I didn’t see anyone struggling out there,” said the retiree.
“I definitely think they made a mistake, everybody could have handled the full distance, definitely.”
Alex Kneselac — a graphic designer from Fort Lee, New Jersey — told The Post, “The heat was not as bad as I thought it would be.”
“It’s pleasant this morning,” said the 51-year-old.
Still, he added that it was a “good idea they cut it down.”
Elyse Salpeter, 55, a sales rep from Nassau County expressed relief that the race was abridged.
“I was glad it was reduced, I was concerned about the heat. I took gels, stopped at each water station, so I was able to make due in this heat. But I’ll be honest, it was hot!” Salpeter, 55, told The Post. “I think it was a smart move to cut it down.”
Arnaud Brohe, who owns a construction firm and lives in Manhattan, was also thankful that he had to spend less time in the hot sun.
“It was so hot! I’m glad they shortened it. At first I was really upset they cut it down but the heat, I got leg cramps on the running section and if they hadn’t cut it short I would have been in real trouble,” said Brohe, 40.
Blaise Barron, a 54-year-old IT worker, declared, “The heat was tough!”
“It was a good call,” the Upper West Side resident told The Post. “I saw one or two [people] getting medical assistance, because they’d fallen, but I didn’t see one person really suffering from the heat or in crisis, so they made the right call.”