This post has been updated as of 8/15/17.
We’ve been trisupporters at multiple Ironman Mont Tremblant races, both 70.3 and full distance. It’s one of our favorites from a spectating point of view, especially if you are staying close to the village and can go back and forth during the day. The town couldn’t be more supportive of this race. In fact, they now have the very first marked IRONMAN Training Road in the world between Mont-Tremblant and Labelle.
That said, the town offers so much to do, that you never have to be bored, for both adults and kids alike. Well, I was by myself at the last race and did get a little bored and started taking some more “artistic” pictures, so if you’re thinking they look a little odd, it’s just me practicing my creativity. There are also tons of great places to grab a bite to eat and sit and relax. We have covered both of these for you in our Food and Fun articles.
If you have kids…
- You may want to sign them up for the IRONKIDS Fun Run on Friday with a 1K at 9:30am and a 5K at 9:50. You can register on site at the Expo. This is a major event during this race and a lot of heart and soul goes into the event. I always go just to watch how much fun it is.
- The event offers an IRONKIDS Fun Park at the Sportium Family Zone during the day Friday-Monday.
- There’s also a Tremblant’s Kidz Club Daycare next to the Sommet des Neiges Hotel on Saturday and Sunday for a fee. It even starts at 6am on race day.
But, now it’s time for what you’re there for – SPECTATING and seeing your triathlete cross that finish line. Since, this already means it will be a stressful day for you, we’d like to give you a few hints to make your race day much easier. This race offers a host of opportunities for viewing and wonderful places to relax (including in the shade), while you wait for your triathlete to finish.
We always recommend checking out the swim start and exit, transition areas, and finish line the day before to see what’s going to work best for you and your family and let your triathlete know where you will be! It’s nice to have a plan so you’re not scrambling on race day and chance missing your athlete.
Here are the TriWivesClub’s tips for making the most of your spectating experience:
The swim starts at the Beach & Tennis Club on Lac Tremblant. There is a little hike from the village to the swim start that involves a small hill, so if you have a stroller kid be prepared.
If you are staying in the Village, you may want to just bring necessities with you until the bike-out and then go back to your room and get whatever else you need. But, this is the view you have on your walk.
In years past, they have done a rather elaborate start with men in kilts and a cannon on the lake, so it’s fun to watch. There’s a beach area where the triathletes go in for a prerace swim, so you can be with them for awhile if you choose.
The pros start at 6:35 and and the age group rolling start is at 6:43. Know the color of cap your triathlete is wearing, which will help you to spot them.
Once the swim starts, you should have time to walk over to swim-out, unless of course you have a really fast swimmer. But if there are crowds, don’t waste time. If you are with little ones in strollers, you may want to decide whether to be at swim start or swim exit. If you can’t get there early and get a spot by the fence, you may never see each other anyway.
SWIM FINISH/BIKE OUT
The swimmers exit at Parc Plage, which is close to Hotel Quintessence, and have a 1/4 mile run up to transition (there is only one transition area). We recommend getting a space along the chute and then getting to bike-out, rather than heading to the swim exit. Bike-out is on the other side of the swim-in, so it may be best to stay to the left of the chute for easy access to bike-out. You should have time to then get up to transition from along the chute. We always recommend knowing where your triathlete’s bike is. Once they head out on the bike, it’s time for breakfast!
This is a two loop bike course. It might be best to stay close to bike-out, as this will also be bike-in and you will have the opportunity to see them as they go out and then zoom by heading to Route 117. Unless you head out to Chemin des Voyageurs and Chemin Duplessis, you really won’t have a chance to see them on the bike as the course is all away from the village. I did venture out and at times was the only spectator on the road – a very lonely spectator! We would not recommend taking a car out on the course as most of the roads are closed to other traffic during the race.
I station myself by the bike-in around my husband’s rack if possible. Then, I dash down to run-out, which was also swim-in. You now have a little time to find a second viewing spot. When your athlete comes out of the tent you will have time to jog/walk on the other side of the fence with them if you can for a bit. This is always nice to see how they are as they finish prepping for their run.
This is a two-loop run course. They first head out of town and then come back through the Village, so you’ll have at least 4 opportunities to see your triathlete if you position yourself on either side of Chemin de la Chapelle going towards the swim start. If you stay in the Village, you can see them twice. I prefer to stay in the Village while they do the out and backs and grab a bite, do some shopping, and there are a lot of activities for the kids. It’s also nice by the lake by swim-out or by Chapelle St. Bernard as there’s plenty of shade.
On the second loop, you can watch your athlete by the chapel and then boogie straight over to the finish line or if you’re in the Village, you can watch them come through to the finish. They also have had to go under the pedestrian bridge over by the Chapelle St. Bernard in previous years and I enjoyed watching my triathlete from above for a different perspective. He was also very surprised when I yelled “go Carl” from on high, but even more surprised when I called out to him along Chemin de la Chapelle!
Make sure you have a beer and poutine in hand! We meet them at the finisher’s tent and give them an “I love you and am very proud of you, but you’re very sweaty, so keep a bit of a distance hug.”
- If you aren’t staying on site, there is free parking at Wheeler Airport with shuttle service from 4am Sunday to 1am Monday morning. Public transportation is also free during the race.
- I could not find anything for Spectators on the Ironman site this year, which seemed unusual. There were no VIP Packages offered or Spectator’s Guide. Not surprised after how last year’s was of very little help with some language issues!
- Be sure to check Ironman for any course changes prior to race day.
- The Friday night Banquet will start at 5pm with banquet food stations and go through to fireworks at 9pm. I have to say they know how to throw a party with music and acts at Mont Tremblant, so don’t miss the banquet. Athletes get in for free, but guests over age 7 will pay $30.
- You can track your triathlete on the Ironman website or download the Ironman app which has been working really well!
- The Village is perfect for hanging out during the day. There’s lots of food, shade, shopping, and playgrounds for the kids. You can even take a tram car up to the top of the Village and/or do the luge.
- For breakfast, we really like the little coffee house with local croissants across from the movie theatre. You will find us lunching at Creperie Catherine or La Sandwicherie in the bike shop, shopping for Back-to-School at Roots for the twins, and enjoying a beer! Stopping at the Hotel Quintessence for a drink at the bar and a great view isn’t too shabby of way to kill some time, either.
- On Monday, they will have a Brunch of Champions with the Awards Ceremony and roll down from 10:30 – 1pm at the Ironman Village. Again, athletes free and guests over age 7 will pay $30.
- We love that the race has a goal of a minimum of 65% of waste to be recycled or composted as a waste management goal. You don’t see this listed on every Athlete Guide, so big kudos to race director, Dominique Piche. Oh, if you see Dominique, send greetings from Dana and Sherry at the TriWivesClub!
We hope you have a great day spectating and tons of fun and we wish your triathlete all the best for a great race!