Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni, Japan, residents and host nation locals dove into a series of events as they competed in the 30th annual MCAS Iwakuni Triathlon, at the air station, Sept. 23, 2017.
Marine Corps Community Services Iwakuni hosted the triathlon to energize the community and provide a positive experience through friendly competition. The event was composed of a 1-kilometer swim, a 23-kilometer bike ride and 8-kilometer run.
“MCCS Iwakuni conducts the triathlon to provide an opportunity for MCAS Iwakuni residents and our guests to compete in a challenging event and prove something to themselves,” said Sakai Mizuho, recreation specialist with MCCS Iwakuni. “This event also gives Japanese and American triathletes a chance to do something that benefits their health and connect with each other.”
The organization also hosted the triathlon to give installation personnel an opportunity to participate in a competitive endurance event without needing to travel too far.
U.S. Marine Corps Maj. Courtney Obrien, assistant operations officer with Marine Aerial Refueler Transport Squadron 152 and first place winner in her division of the triathlon, said she also enjoyed how the event pushed her to keep up with her husband who was one of the first in the water.
“I was running with my husband and he was part of the first wave that took off,” said Obrien. “The whole time I just wanted to keep him in my sights, catch up with him and finish with him.”
Obrien said her favorite part about the triathlon was being able to zoom through stop signs on her bicycle.
“Events like this are great,” said Obrien. “It brings Iwakuni together, and gets conversation going. It’s good to bring the locals on base, and then be able to go out in town and be good ambassadors.”