Aaron Shamy – Toughman Utah Race Director

Where are you from?

I am from Salt Lake City, Utah but have lived in Italy and currently reside in Wasilla, Alaska.

What sports and position did you play in school?

In school I had a love for all athletics and competition. While in school I was involved in a variety of sports and teams; wrestling, swimming, diving, cross country, track, snow and water skiing, and I even took and aerobics class from the famous Ms Belnap!

I really found my niche in the sport of Rock Climbing. At the culminations of my climbing career I would be ranked the nations #2 Technical Climber & #1 Speed climber. I was a member of the US Rock Climbing team as a 16yr old and represented the US in international competitions taking home a Gold Medal from the 1999 X-Games in speed Rock Climbing.

Where did you go to College?

Western Governer’s University – Bachelor’s Degree in Business Management

BYU – Master’s in Public Administration

Did you play sports in College?

While I did not play any collegiate sports I continued to climb and coach climbing while attending college classes. I helped Cirque Du Soleil with some climbing choreography at their show workshops in Montreal Canada. I found adventure by hiking and running on most weekends to decompress from the week of studies.

When and where did you start doing triathlon?

After barely completing the Wasatch 100 mile endurance run in 2006 I was ready to switch it up and add a new facet to my thirst for endurance and adventure. So in 2009 I completed the Salem Spring Sprint distance Triathlon in preparations for the Escape from Alcatraz event.

What is your favorite distance to race?

I love the 70.3 distance! Kick’s my butt and then I am home in time for dinner and watch CBS’s Survivor with the kids.

What is your favorite race?

Oh the best race of all time has to be TOUGHMAN UTAH HALF!!! IT IS A MUST!!! Is my bias oozing yet? Ok ok then let’s go with the Escape from Black Ridge … it has beautiful beach and a swim with a view of the Salt Lake valley, pure awesomeness!

Besides triathlon what other sports you do?


Mostly I spend my time rock climbing and being on the trails when it comes to other sports. I love being active though and there is plenty of outdoor activities in Alaska to keep me busy!

How did you get into being a race director? What are some or all of the races you work as the race director or assist in directing?

I had been racing for a year or two and became aware of an event company that was for sale – I thought it would be a fun side job and a way to get deeper into my new hobby. We bought that company and have acquired a couple of other events since.

Our race schedule every year is as follows:

Early Spring: The Ice Breaker – in American Fork, UT usually the last weekend in March – pool swim.

Salem Spring Triathlon – In Salem Utah, the weekend before Memorial Day weekend. Best sprint distance event in Utah.

The Rock Cliff Tri at Jordanelle – closest one to my house in Heber city Utah – both Sprint and Olympic Options – probably the prettiest course in the state.

The Toughman Utah Half – longest event on the Wasatch Front (Salt Lake to Provo). Fastest and Flattest half course in the west.

The Escape from Black Ridge – Sprint and Olympic point to point tri in Herriman Utah.

The Camp Yuba Classic – End of year bash – overnight campout – rural course with very few cars – best race of the year. Sprint and Olympic Options.

What is your philosophy, mission, or vision as a race director?

Philosophy? Mission? Vision? – We just want to have a good time and make sure the athletes are having a good time as well. We believe we put on the best events in the state and have a pretty loyal following attesting to that. No RaceTri Event is complete without a pre-race speech from my partner Aaron Shamy – usually accompanied by some zaniness or a dive into the pool, lake or pond where the swim will take place.

See Joel’s response … and … I have learned that there is no such thing as a perfect event for every racer but gosh dang it!!! I sure want to try!!! I think we get close sometimes, we learn from our mistakes, take feedback (not on race day – don’t do that, I won’t remember), and try and continually improve. We seek to put on the best possible event … and maybe one of these days it will be perfect! I really do love the athletes, and want to see all of them achieve their desired aims when it comes to race day and beyond!

We are committed to our athletes to provide a quality athletic experience with a fun and hometown feel.

Name and link to your coaching and race site?


Tell us all you wish to tell about yourself?

What races and/or events are you planning on doing in 2016?

Link to all your social media site so people can read more about you and follow you?


Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/racetri

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