Girlfriends Triathlon & Fitness Festival
August 11th, 2024
Vancouver, WA

Girlfriends Triathlon & Fitness Festival
August 11th, 2024
Vancouver, WA

Girlfriends Triathlon & Fitness Festival
August 11th, 2024
Vancouver, WA

About The Race


This 28th Annual Girlfriends All-Women’s Triathlon & Fitness Festival at a beautiful venue along the Columbia River offers something for everyone so rally your girlfriends, train together and then cross the finish line with your best girls!

It is one of the most scenic areas with views of the Columbia River, Mt. Hood, Mt. St. Helens and Vancouver Lake. The course is flat and fast with a down-current swim close to the shore so perfect for a 1st time Triathlon or Multisport event! Kids Triathlon and a Sunset 5K/10K are scheduled Friday night and Co-Ed events on Saturday so make a whole weekend of it for the whole family!

Race Starts in:








Date & Time


All events start at 9am. Be there early to set up and for pre-race instructions.

Location Details

Frenchmans Bar, Vancouver WA – 9612 NW Lower River Road, Vancouver WA 98660

Girlfriends Triathlon & Fitness Festival

9612 NW Lower River Road, Vancouver WA 98660
Directions: Take I-5 to Exit# 1C (Mill Plain Blvd) and go West on Mill Plain. Mill Plain Blvd turns into Lower River Road. Follow Lower River Road for about 5 miles (Note—at the fork in the road at Vancouver Lake—stay to the left towards Frenchmans’ Bar) Follow signs to Frenchman’s Bar park. It’s about a 10 minute drive from I5 Bridge.


Sunday August 11th: All events begin at 9am.

NOTE: The Girlfriends event is on Sunday now with our Co-ed events on Saturday. We needed to switch due to scheduling requirements.

Girlfriends Sprint Triathlon: Begins at 9am.
825yd/750m/.466mi Swim, 12 mile (11.77 miles) Bike, 5km Run

Girlfriends Sprint Distance Duathlon: Start at the Finish Line arch at 9:00am.
5km Run, 12 mile (11.77) Bike, 5km Run

Girlfriends Sprint AquaBike: You will start in the AquaBike wave, then complete the bike route. Your race is over once you finish your Bike ride and cross the Bike Return Timing maps. Rack your bike and then you can casually make your way through the finish line so we can reward you with your finisher’s medal. Be sure to exit the transition through the non-timing mat opening. This is a perfect event for those who are not runners (and don’t want to walk the Tri) and/or those who are recovering from a running injury. #SWIMBIKEDONE

Girlfriends 5km (3.1 mile) Run: Start at the Finish Line arch at 9am

Note: The Girlfriends Triathlon Festival is part of the Columbia River Triathlon Festival which includes a FREE Kids Tri on Friday night at 5pm so get your kids involved too. Details for Kids Tri are below. The Sunset 5K/10K will also be on Friday night starting at 7pm and kids get to race the 5K for FREE. And on Saturday we host the Co-Ed Sprint & Olympic event so there is something for the whole family all weekend long!

Packet Pickup Details

Remember your ID and USAT Membership Card (if applicable). It’s a USAT requirement! If you’re picking up a package for someone else, please be sure to have their signed authorization form and a copy of their ID.

Registration package pick up location changes so pay attention to times and days listed below. If you unable to pickup at any of the times listed below, please email us at to make other arrangements.

THURSDAY at Foot Traffic Vancouver 10 AM to 6 PM
Foot Traffic, 305 SE Chkalov Dr., Vancouver, WA 98683

FRIDAY at Frenchman’s Bar from 2 PM – 7 PM
9612 NW Lower River Road, Vancouver, WA 98660

SATURDAY at Frenchman’s Bar 7 AM – 2 PM
9612 NW Lower River Road, Vancouver, WA 98660

SUNDAY at Frenchman’s Bar from 7 AM – 9 AM

9612 NW Lower River Rd, Vancouver, WA 98660

Awards & Celebrations

Course Records

5K Course:

2023 – Mary Imboden – 20:36

10K Course:

2017 – Leah Brown – 42:03:00

Sprint Triathlon:

2023 – Natalie Moser – 1:05:48:00

Sprint Duathlon:

2023 – Allison Early – 1:28:43

Sprint Aquabike:

2019Ashley Zagst45:16

You’re a winner just for showing up to support this great community event. But to reward those speedy, kick-butt athletes, here’s what we’ve come up with:

Awards for Top Three Women Overall and Masters Champion for the Sprint Triathlon, Duathlon, AquaBike & 5K.

Top 3 Age Group, Relay, & Athena Division Winners in all distances:

15 and under, 16-19, 20-24yrs, 25-29yrs, 30-34yrs, 35-39yrs, 40-44yrs, 45-49yrs, 50-54yrs, 55-59yrs, 60-64yrs, 65-69yrs, 70-74, 75-49, 80+

We will also be giving a special gift to any gal who completes an event on Saturday & Sunday and a 3-Headed Beast Medal for anyone who races Friday, Saturday AND Sunday! Who is up for the challenge?!

Awards Ceremony will begin at approximately 11:15am on Sunday for the Girlfriends events.


Award Criteria:

If you choose to race in the Athena (165+ pounds) division, you are not eligible for Age Group awards due to USAT restrictions. You must choose one or the other.
Based on USAT age categories, if your birthday is prior to December 31st of that race season, you will race in the older age group even if you haven’t celebrated your birthday yet. Due to USAT sanctioning you will ‘age-up’.
Friends & Family – if you choose to race in this category, you will not be eligible for awards. This is a non-competitive category that allows friends and family to start in the same wave group together regardless of their ages.



Our City Cares – The Mission: Unite Communities to Combat Suicide

Ainsleys Angels – In addition to ensuring everyone can experience endurance events, Ainsley’s Angels of America aims to build awareness about America’s special needs community through inclusion in all aspects of life.

What to Bring

Watch the weather closely. The show goes on no matter what the weather is doing.

You must wear your chip timing piece during the entire event. You will be given a band that will hold your chip timing piece around your left ankle throughout the entire event. Be sure to have your Chip Timing piece on before you start the race and be sure to step over the blue timing mats after each segment of the race. If you are wearing a wet-suit, make sure the timing piece goes under your wetsuit otherwise, you will have a very difficult time getting off your wet suit.

Swim: Wetsuits are optional for the swim but will provide buoyancy and warmth. However, many people opt for no wetsuit for a triathlon so no worries. We will provide you with a swim cap but you will want to bring your own goggles.

Bike: A biking helmet is mandatory. You will also receive 2 stickers in your package with your race number on them. The small sticker should go on the front of your helmet. The bigger sticker will wrap around your bike frame. Road or mountain bikes are acceptable. For safety reasons, be sure to have end-caps on the end of your handle-bars.

Run: You must finish the race with your bib number on the front of you. Some people choose to pin it on at the beginning of the race and have it on for the whole event so they don’t have to worry about it. Others pin it on a singlet that they put on once they finish the swim before they head out for the bike. Others use an elastic racing strap that they pin their bib number to and then quickly strap it on before they leave for the run. Use whatever option feels best for you.

Remember to bring a change of clothing so you can enjoy the post-event festivities. It’s a great beach day venue!

Special Instructions

VERY IMPORTANT – It is very important that your supporters understand that they must arrive to Frenchmans’s Bar 15-30 minutes before the race starts because once the race begins, since there is only one road in and out of the park, no vehicles will be allowed on the road for the safety of the cyclists. If they don’t make it before the race begins, they will be forced to walk (or have them bring bike and ride) 3 miles from Vancouver lake parking to Frenchman’s Bar. They should also understand that NO VEHICLES will be able to leave the parking lot until the last cyclist is off their bike. The road is too narrow to have lots of vehicles on the roads with cyclists going both directions.

Body Marking: You will need to get your body marked BEFORE you enter transition. Body marking is for safety, identification and competition.

Left Calf – Your event will go on your Left Calf.

  • “S” for “Sprint” and “O” for “Olympic”
  • “T” for Triathlon.
  • “D” for Duathlon.
  • “AQ” for AquaBike

Right Calf – Your age will go on your Right calve and an “R” if you are on a relay team.

Both Arms – Your Bib # will go on both arms

How does a Relay Team work? If you are competing on a Relay team, please read the following information very carefully. If you are on a Relay Team, once the race starts, make sure you don’t inadvertently cross over a timing mat and mess up all your splits when you’re waiting for your turn. Each teammate will wear a Timing Chip in order to give you the swim, bike and run splits. Your Relay Team will share a Bib # – the swimmer only needs your bib# marked on their body, the biker will have their Bib # on their helmet and bike and the runner will wear the bib # on the front of their body. After having your body marked, please place your gear and bikes at the designated “Relay” area in the transition. During competition, you must tag (touch finger tips) at the designated Team Start location upon finishing or starting your segment of the event (back corner of transition area).

VERY IMPORTANT: If you are the cyclist or runner, please be very careful NOT to cross any timing mats as you are wandering around prior to the start of your individual leg. If you cross a mat after the race has begun, your time will start at the time you stepped on the mat. We want you to have a good race and accurate results so it is very important that you understand this element of the timing process. Team swimmers and cyclists, remove your disposable timing chip once your leg is over. So for example, when the race begins, the swimmer will complete their swim and then go through the normal swim entrance so they get their timing split. Then they will run to the Relay Transition area, tag their biking team-mate and then the biker will get their bike and exit through the normal bike exit. At this point, the swimmer should remove their timing chip. The biker will complete their bike, enter into the transition area through the normal bike entrance, rack their bike and then run to the Relay transition area and tag their runner. The biker should then remove their timing chip. The runner then takes off through the normal Run Exit and completes the run course. Everyone meets at the finish line to greet the runner as they finish, cheer each other on and get your finishers medals crossing the finish line together! Yes, you all get a finisher’s medal!

AQUABIKE Athletes – You will swim in the AQUABIKE wave (not your Age Group wave) for your respective distance. Complete your swim and bike. Your race and time splits are complete once you cross the last bike timing mat upon your entrance back into transition. At this point, you can take your time, rack your bike, exit through the NO TIMING mat entrace/exit and casually make your way to the finish line to cross and receive your finishers’ medal and have your chip timing piece removed. We want to celebrate your great accomplishment!

Kid’s Events

Kids 12 and under get to register for FREE and kids 13 ~ 17 receive 50% off on their registration!

Parents, please read these important PRE-RACE INSTRUCTIONS FOR THE KIDS TRIATHLON

Kids Triathlon: Friday August 11th

Start time: Kids 6 and under: 5:00pm
Kids 7-10: approx 5:20pm
Kids 11-15 years: approx 5:40pm

Swim Distance:

6 and under – 25 yard swim (.01 miles)
7-10 years – 100 yard swim (.05 miles)
11-15 years – 200 yard swim (.11 miles)

Bike Distance:

6 and under – 1/2 mile Bike
7- 10 years – 2 mile Bike
11-15 years – 3 mile Bike

Run Distance:

6 and under .25 miles
7-10 years – .45 miles
11-15 years – .55 miles

Set up – Be there early to help your kids set up their transition area. You will set up their equipment in the adult transition area in their designated age group spots. It’s a Friday night so be sure to leave enough time to account for traffic. It can add a lot of pressure on kids if they are feeling late and rushed.

What to bring – Swim suit or gear they can swim, bike and run in. Goggles and swim caps are optional. Bring their bike and helmet. Bring their running shoes and socks. Pin their Bib # to their shirt, Bike Sticker on their Bike frame and their helmet sticker on the front of their helmet. Please write your child’s name, age group and your cell phone on their bib so we can easily identify them.

Age-Limits – The upper age limit is 15 years old at the time of the event. There is no set lower age limit but parents/guardians should assess the child’s abilities to complete the prescribed course. The Kids Mini Triathlon is designed to be a positive experience and no child should be entered that is not going to benefit from the experience. Being asked to perform beyond one’s abilities may not be a positive experience so help them train so they are properly prepared. Give your kids the permission to take breaks or walk if needed. Try not to put too much pressure on them! Make it fun!

Swim Aids: Swim aids such as floatties or flotation vests will be allowed. Fins are not allowed for safety reasons.

Swim Assistance from parent/guardian: Swim assistance is MANDATORY during the swim course. At least one parent/guardian must walk along the shore or beside their child for safety reasons. Kids can easily touch the bottom, however, this is a river with a current, so each child must have one adult overseeing them the entire time they are in the water. In addition, adult volunteers will be in the water for safety. We have never lost a child during the swim and want to maintain our 100% success rate!

Adult Course Assistance: Younger children (6 and under) should be escorted throughout the entire event by a parent/guardian to assure they stay on course and are encouraged. Parents can assist children in the older age groups depending on the child’s needs and comfort level. When assisting kids, try to let them do everything by themselves as much as possible (but assistance is allowed to assure a positive experience). It’s also helpful to have the parent there to keep younger children on the right side of the trail during the bike portion. If they will be completing the bike on their own, be sure you discuss with them the importance of staying to the right of the trail and not making any abrupt changes in direction to avoid any bike crashes.

Training Wheels – Training wheels will be allowed & Helmets are mandatory!

Awards. All Kids Tri participants receive a finisher’s medal but we will not be timing the race so no overall awards will be given.
We will have a brief meeting for each age group at the stage prior to the start of each Age Group race to assure that athletes and parents know exactly what they need to do!


Can I register on Race Day? Can my friend pick up my packet? Can I get a refund? Can I transfer my registration to another race or athlete?
All registration and packet pickup related questions can be found under the main navigation heading titled “Registration & Packet Pickup”. If you cannot find the answer to your question, please email us at
What are the rules?

We currently adhere to the USAT Rules for Triathlon & Duathlon. Please click here to review complete list of USAT Rules. Important rules include no drafting, you must wear a helmet and music is ABSOLUTELY NOT allowed during the bike for obvious safety reasons.

Can I use a personal music device while cycling?
Absolutely no music devices are allowed during the bike segment for obvious safety risks and will result in immediate disqualification.
Can I use a personal music devise while running?
During any running segments, we prefer for athletes to NOT use music devices to maximize safety, assure a fair competitive environment and assure athletes can hear all course marshal instructions. With that said, we also understand that many athletes rely on music to help endure the challenge of running. To accommodate the needs of our athletes while still assuring maximum safety and a fair, competitive environment, here is the arrangement that we can accommodate.

  • If you chose to use a personal music device, you must always keep one ear open for instructions so only one ear-bud can be used at any time. In addition, if you opt to use music, you will not be eligible for awards, points and rankings. So as an athlete, you have to make a choice…music or awards/points/rankings.
  • If you are using a personal music devise with two earbuds, you will be immediately disqualified. Trust us, we don’t want to have to enforce a disqualification but in order to assure the safety of all athletes, this is a very important rule.
  • We also request that if you chose to use a personal music device that you keep the volume to a minimum to assure all instructions can be heard.
Do I need to wear a wetsuit?
No, you do not need to wear a wetsuit. Many will not wear a wetsuit while others will choose to wear a wetsuit because of the buoyancy and warmth factor.
Will there be on-site mechanical/bike support?
Yes, we will have a bike mechanic on-site to provide basic Bike Service/repairs.
Where can I find lost items?
Any equipment that is unmarked will be returned to the stage during the event. After the event, we will take to the Why Racing office and you can contact us to locate. Please come to the event with all personal belongings well marked with your name and/or race number.
What should I do if my shirt doesn't fit?
If the size of the shirt you ordered does not fit, we will be hosting a ‘Shirt Swap” after the event at the information booth. We cannot guarantee you will be able to swap, since it will depend on left over shirts, but we will do our best to accommodate your request.
Do I have to use a road or racing bike?
No. We welcome any type of bike as long as it is functioning properly with brakes and endcaps at the end of your handlebars. For the Off-Road event, you will want to use an off-road or mountain bike to be able to accomodate the trails.
Do I have to run?
No, you could walk, jog, wog, hop or prance your way to the finish line. As long as you get there under your own volition, that is acceptable!
Will there be water on the course?
Water Aid Stations will be approximately every 2 miles. You will have to carry your own hydration and fuel on your bike during the bike courses. Energy Drink and Gel will be available at the Aid stations.
Will there be bathrooms on the course?
We’ve ordered Porta-potties for the start/finish!
Where should I tell my friends and family to go to cheer me on?
The best approach for your family, friends and cheerleaders is to park within Frenchmans Bar. They can see you start and finish. They can take a short walk up the access road and see you bike out, bike past you, bike in, run out and finish! Tons of action for them! Or they can just hang in the expo area after you start and then they can sit and enjoy the music and watch you swim/run in, bike out, bike in, and then head to the finish line to watch you finish. Frenchmen’s Bar is a great venue for spectators to watch. There’s a playground and beach for the kids, and volleyball nets for fun after-event activities so bring the whole family – just make sure they get their early before the race starts – otherwise they’ll be walking 3 miles to get to the start/finish area since the roads will be closed once the race begins to assure the safety of the cyclists. Be sure to tell them to make signs for you, bring cowbells, and bring you flowers for the finish. Especially if this is your first race, you’ve got to celebrate! It’s a big accomplishment!
Note – It is very important that your supporters understand that they must arrive to Frenchmans’s Bar 15-30 minutes before the race starts because once the race begins, no vehicles will be allowed on the road for the safety of the cyclists. They should also understand that they will not be able to leave the parking lot until the last cyclist is off their bike.
Are dogs allowed on the course?
Unfortunately due to insurance requirements, only Service Dogs are allowed on course and must start at the end of the race after all other participants have started.
Are strollers allowed on the course?
Yes, but due to insurance requirements, strollers must start at the end of the race after all other participants have started.

Travel & Accommodations

Travel & Accommodations

There is so much to do in our beautiful city of Vancouver WA. Make it a full weekend and enjoy so much of what our city and the surrounding area has to offer.

View the following video for a glimpse of all there is to do in Vancouver WA. Plus Portland OR is literally right across the river so come for the weekend or stay a week or more and soak it all in!

For our out of town guests, if you are flying, you will need to schedule your flight arriving into Portland Oregon. The event start and finish and local hotels are a 20 minute cab ride from the airport.

                                                                                                            BOOK YOUR RESERVATION*


                                                                               Call our front desk directly at (360) 750-1100 to reserve a room.                                                                                                                                                        701 S.E. Columbia Shores Blvd., Vancouver, Washington, 98661, USA



Here’s a list of great local restaurants to help you carb up. Be sure to make reservations early!

McMenamins  –  Amazing views of the Columbia River!

Beaches – Fabulous views of the Columbia River

Heathen Brewing – Great beer and good eats!

The Rock Woodfire Pizza

Little Italy

Check out how much fun we had in the previous years at the Girlfriends Triathlon!




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WHY Racing Events Inc.
210 E. Fourth St, Suite B
La Center, WA 98629

Phone: (360) 314-4682