Andrew Raynor Dover New Hampshire NH

Triathlon information in New Hampshire

Ironman Chattanooga Swim and T1 Explained

Andrew Raynor Dover

By Mike Tarrolly for Crushing Iron 

Crushing Iron has been shooting video of Ironman Chattanooga since its inception. We’ve put together a little video below that explains race morning bus shuttle, the swim course, and the flow through T1.

* Also, after you’ve watched the video, you may want to check out the podcast below (Fake News In Your Race Brain), especially the second half where Coach Robbie has a great segment on tackling the Ironman Run. We got a ton of great feedback from those racing Ironman Wisconsin.


On race morning, athletes will head downtown, double check their gear bags, then board a bus that takes them to the swim start, which is approximately a 15 minute ride. If it’s warm, these busses can get kind of hot, so keep that in mind.

Once there, you’ll find your place in line and wait for the cannon. The final approach looks like this and there is a long pier at the end with plenty of room to jump into very spacious start for your swim. 


The course itself is all downstream, but it’s not “straight.” There is plenty of river space, and I remember this being almost a completely clean swim with regard to body contact, but my advice (even though it may be tempting to find a “better line”) would be stay as close to the buoys as possible. 


When you get close to the exit there is one final red buoy you must corner, then you climb out of the water with help from volunteers (be ready to make a big step up), and run down the boardwalk.


After about 100 yards you’ll turn left to run up a short ramp to get into transition. 

You’ll run down this row, grab your bag, then turn left into the center of transition to get your bike.

Here’s the video explanation of the Ironman Chattanooga Swim Course/Transition 1

If you want even more, here’s a link to a post with 18 Stories we’ve written about Ironman Chattanooga over the years.

Good luck to everyone racing! Please make sure you say hi if you see Coach Robbie or Me walking around.

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Crushing Iron hosts 3 triathlon camps in Nashville, TN each year. We have videos and feedback from last year’s camp here.

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