August 08, 2016

BOULDER, Colo. (AP) A 34-year-old Nebraska woman struck and killed by a vehicle during the Ironman Boulder race this past weekend in Colorado had veered outside the designated race lane, according to the Colorado State Patrol.

Michelle Walters died Sunday morning after being hit during the event's bicycle race on U.S. 36 north of Boulder.

Walters veered outside of the coned-off race lane and into the traffic lane where she was hit by a pickup truck, Patrol Trooper Nate Reid told the Daily Camera (

Walters, of McCook, Nebraska, died at a hospital.

Reid said it is not clear why Walters veered from the designated race lane.

The two-lane highway had not been closed to vehicle traffic during Sunday's race. The road's shoulder was blocked off with cones for cyclists and traffic, which race director Dave Christen said has been the case for the two previous races in Boulder.

''We do put a lot of thought and process into what we think is safe and proven safe,'' Christen said. ''It's something we've been planning for months on end.''

The driver of the truck was not injured and no citations were immediately issued.

The accident is still under investigation.

Participants in the Ironman event began with a 2.4-mile, one-loop swim in Boulder Reservoir. Athletes then continued on a challenging 112-mile, multiloop bike course, followed by a 26.2-mile running course.

Last year, a 40-year-old Virginia man died three days after completing the Ironman triathlon in Boulder. Brian Godlove, of Fairfax, died in a Boulder hospital of complications from dehydration and rhabdomyolysis associated with excessive exercise. Rhabdomyolysis occurs when muscle tissue rapidly breaks down and enters the bloodstream, and it can be brought about by extreme exercise.


Information from: Daily Camera,

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