Carmageddon II: Organizers 'confident' triathlon will run smoothly
About 2,500 people will storm the Westside on Sunday morning, smack in the middle of a freeway closure some have dubbed Carmageddon II.
It’s not ideal timing, but a spokeswoman with the Herbalife Triathlon Los Angeles says the date was picked 11 months ago. Now, with the closure of a 10-mile stretch of the 405 Freeway also slated for this weekend, she said organizers will have to “play the hand they were dealt.”
“We’re extremely confident that for our event, things will go smoothly,” said Jan Fambro, spokeswoman for the event.
In the run-up to another closure of one of the nation’s busiest freeways, officials have acknowledged that the timing of this construction -- in September versus July -- could mean more cars on the road. School is in session this time around, and officials have pointed to the triathlon as one example of an event that wasn’t on the calendar during Carmageddon I.
Fambro said there were several scheduling constraints that required organizers to hold the event this weekend, including the availability of L.A. Live. The athletes will swim, bike and run from Venice Beach to L.A. Live starting just after 7 a.m. Sunday and ending in the early afternoon. That means racers and spectators will likely be hitting the road for the starting line before most of Los Angeles is awake.
Participants are being encouraged to take a shuttle from L.A. Live to Venice Beach, though Fambro emphasized that the freeway closure “has no impact” on the triathlon route. She added that there has been no drop-off in registration, and there have been no questions about the 405 closure on the race’s Facebook page or calls about it to the production office.
“This is not the worst thing that could happen to us,” Fambro said.
-- Matt Stevens