For anyone thinking this is the summer to finally tackle a triathlon, there are still three weeks to train for the Pacific Coast Triathlon, which will be Aug. 1 at Crystal Cove.
And if ocean swimming is scaring you away, the triathlon is offering clinics to help soothe your fears. Costa Mesa residents Nan Platto and assistant David Light will hold four clinics--Saturday (sold out), July 17, 24 and 25--at the event's swimming course below the Reef Point parking lot at Crystal Cove State Park.
Platto, a longtime triathlete and former ocean lifeguard and collegiate swimmer, said about 20 people had to be rescued during the swim event in last year's inaugural Pacific Coast Triathlon.
To help prevent such occurrences, the clinics are designed to help athletes get in and out of the water and make better time once they are in it.
"There is no place to really have an ocean training course," Platto said. "We do most of our swimming in the pool, but that's a very controlled environment."
Ocean conditions are obviously variable, as clients in a clinic last month discovered. That morning, seven-foot waves were breaking. "I could barely get out," Platto said.
By the end of the two-hour clinic, most were handling the conditions well, she said. "People are leery at first but once they learn how to approach the waves, they learn how to make their way through, and through practice and perseverance, they can manage."
The clinic, which costs $25 with proceeds going to the triathlon's charity.
Space is limited. For reservations, call (714) 297-9119.
Before Huntington Beach turns itself over to the professional surfers for the last two weeks of July, Surf City will host the Foster's Lager California Lifeguard Championships July 15.
About 125 local lifeguards will compete in 14 events, including surf rescue, ocean swim, surf ski and run-swim-run. Team Los Angeles County is the defending regional champion. The top 20 finishers will advance to the national championships Aug. 6-7 in Cape May, N.J.
The event starts at 8 a.m. at the Huntington Beach Pier.
* Bombardier, the world's largest boat manufacturer, is sponsoring a boating safety and "demo day" event at Irvine Lake Saturday and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Company representatives will distribute information on boating safety and offer tips about proper boat operation.
* The North Face is offering an introductory climbing clinic at Rockreation Indoor Climbing Gym in Costa Mesa from 9-11 a.m. on July 24. Climbers will be able to try out La Sportiva climbing shoes and get basic instruction from Rockreation staff members. The event is limited to 25 participants. For reservations, call (949) 646-0909.