The early start time of Sunday's Jarden Westchester Triathlon will negate most of its influence on local traffic. But delays are anticipated in several areas, particularly in Rye and Purchase.
The event will begin at 7 a.m. and end around 12 p.m. The event starts and ends at Rye Town Park. Although the course of the bicycle and running events will remain open to traffic, some temporary detours and intermittent street closings in Rye may be necessary, particularly in the vicinity of Forest Avenue, Grace Church Street, Highland Road, Purchase Street, Theodore Fremd Avenue, Playland Parkway, and Milton Point.
Rye police advise motorists to allow extra travel time and use caution for the approximately 1,300 runners and bikers. In addition, spectators at the event are reminded that the seasonal prohibition on parking in the vicinity of Playland and Rye Town Park remains in effect; parking violations will be enforced.
The bike trek that loops through parts of six communities, will have the biggest impact on local traffic, explained Phil Gormley, who has chaired the triathlon for the last seven years. But all riders are required to finish the course by 11 a.m., meaning most of the roads will be cleared by early morning.
"We don't want to disrupt the community too much," Gormley explained.
The largest expected delays will be at the intersection of Anderson Hill Rd. and Purchase St. and Milton Rd. and Playland Pkwy. in Rye. The busiest stretch in Purchase will be from 8 a.m. to 9 a.m., while most bikers will pass through Rye between 9 a.m. and 10 a.m.
The rest of the track passes through parts of Port Chester, Rye Brook, Greenwich, White Plains and North Castle.
Volunteers will help keep the path organized throughout the morning, and local police will direct traffic at busy intersections, Gormley explained. Outside of those two areas, Gormley said most roads are wide enough that participants and drivers shouldn't have trouble sharing the road.
"Those are the two bottlenecks, if there are any," Gormley explained.
The final portion of the triathlon will be a run that is contained to Rye. The course avoids any busy roads and shouldn't pose much of a problem for drivers, Gormley said. The triathlon begins with a .9-mile swim in the Long Island Sound.
Participants will take on the course in waves to avoid congestion throughout the day. The first participants will hit the water at 7 a.m. Sunday.
Now in its 28th year, the annual Jarden Westchester Triathlon is open to individuals, professional triathletes and challenged athletes. The event raises money to support six primary charities.
A full day of activities will kick-off the event Saturday, including a children's race that will be contained to Playland Park.