27th Annual Gulf Coast Triathlon

By: Josh Gauntt Email
By: Josh Gauntt Email

Over 70 miles of swimming, biking, and running. It's what made up the 27th annual Gulf Coast Triathlon..

A grueling day for the competitors, especially for Dale Filsell who's an Air Force Master Sergeant battling polycystic kidney disease or pkd. This is his third Gulf Coast Triathlon..

"I feel pretty great after the race," Filsell said.

With pkd, Filsell has to constantly monitor is water-intake.

"So as it is for someone who doesn't do something like this..it's dangerous but he keeps up with it, with his doctors every step of the way and we're here to support him," Deedee Vetter, Filsell's girlfriend said.

A triathlon is all about overcoming obstacles and Filsell isn't letting his disease stop him from running the race.

"When I'm out here running, it makes me feel like I'm accomplishing something. I'm basically fighting the disease. I'm not letting it take control of my life," Filsell added.

Along with Filsell, there are nearly 1600 other competitors hoping to go that extra mile. And along their paths are fans cheering them on..

"I cheer for all of them. I don't know half of the people I'm cheering for, but they give a wave and a thumbs up..it's awesome," Allison Kotowski, a Jacksonville, Florida resident.

Just a little bit of motivation for the tri-athletes. Motivation to get to the finish line.

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