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Sarah Reinertsen, first female above-knee amputee to complete an Ironman and U.S. Army LTC Patricia S. Collins, Paratrooper and amputee, to Compete in AFLAC Iron Girl Columbia Triathlon

Posted on August 5, 2010

Columbia, MD Columbia Triathlon Association (CTA) is proud to announce two very special athletes who will be competing among 2400 women in this year’s AFLAC Iron Girl Columbia Triathlon on Sunday, August 22, 2010.  Sarah Reinertsen and U.S. Army LTC Patricia S. Collins are both athletes, both amputees and both inspiring women!
Sarah Reinertsen is the first female above-knee amputee to complete an Ironman – the 2005 Ironman World Championship in Hawaii (a 2.4-mile swim, 112-mile bike and 26.2-mile run).  Sarah became the first woman to finish this grueling test on an artificial leg, finishing in a remarkable 15:05. In 2006, she was the first person with a physical challenge on the hit show, CBS's Amazing Race. Then in August of 2007, Sarah became a World Champion, winning gold in the Physically Challenged Olympic Distance World Championship in Hamburg Germany.  Now, Sarah makes a living as a motivational speaker, showing others that no matter your challenge, you can achieve your dreams. She also acts as a CAF (Challenged Athletes Foundation) spokesperson sharing her knowledge and experience with kids and other challenged athletes.  To read more about Sarah, visit

Patricia S. Collins, U.S. Army Lieutenant Colonel, Paratrooper, has been serving in the Army for 19 years. Right after a tour in Iraq in 2006, she was struck by an automobile while cycling to work. After ten months of rehab and minimal mobility, she elected to have her left leg amputated below the knee.  Always an active woman, Patty was determined to get back to participating in sports. Within 18 months of her amputation, Patty had returned to parachuting out of airplanes in the Army, completed a bicycle ride from San Francisco to Los Angeles, and participated in a triathlon.  That same year, Patty was introduced to the Challenged Athletes Foundation (CAF). In addition to racing with the Operation Rebound team of military and first responders, she became involved in the Aflac Iron Girl race series to help raise money and awareness for physically challenged individuals.  Patty inspires the athlete and American in all of us by continuing to participate in sports and actively serve our country. (For interviews or photos, please contact
The AFLAC Iron Girl Columbia Triathlon will be held on August 22, 2010 at Centennial Park in Howard County, MD.  It is the largest AFLAC Iron Girl Triathlon in the U.S.
The event is produced by Columbia Triathlon Association in cooperation with Howard County Recreation and Parks, and includes a 0.62mile swim, a 17.5mile bike, and a 3.4mile run.  “Iron Girl's mission is to empower women toward a healthy lifestyle, and CTA is proud to be a part of the AFLAC Iron Girl Triathlon events,” said CTA Founder and Race Director, Robert Vigorito.  For more CTA Iron Girl info, visit

About CTA:
The Columbia Triathlon Association (CTA) is a 501c-3 non-profit organization based in Columbia, Maryland and incorporated in 1988 by Founder and Race Director, Robert Vigorito. The organization plays an active role in its surrounding communities and supports several local charities, among them: The Arc of Howard County, which supports children and adults with developmental and intellectual disabilities, The Ulman Cancer Fund for Young Adults based in Howard County, The Lance Armstrong Foundation, Team In Training, The Blazeman Foundation, and several other causes.
CTA also produces and directs The Columbia Triathlon, Eagleman Ironman 70.3 Triathlon (a qualifier for the Ford Ironman World Championship Kona and Foster Grant Ironman 70.3 World Championship Clearwater), Celebration Sprint Triathlon, ChesapeakeMan Ultra Triathlon Endurance Festival, TriColumbia LIFEFest, and TriColumbia Kidz Triathlon.  For event information visit <> , or email CTA at <> .

About CAF:
Established in 1997, the Challenged Athletes Foundation (CAF) is a unique organization that recognizes the athletic greatness inherent in all people with physical challenges and supports their athletic endeavors by providing grants for training, competition and equipment needs.  For more information on the Challenged Athletes Foundation call (858) 866-0959 or email <>

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