SILS student qualifies for Ironman Triathlon World Championship

Release date: 
September 1, 1998

Chapel Hill, NC — Andrew Jackson, a second year SILS student has qualified for the 20th Annual Ironman Triathlon World Championship on October 3, 1998 on the big island of Hawaii.

The Ironman consists of a 2.4 mile ocean swim, 112 mile bike race and 26.2 mile run, to be completed within 17 hours. Training for the race typically requires 18 to 24 hours per week for six to eight months to develop the stamina and endurance needed to compete in the 140.6 mile event. The Ironman Triathlon began in 1978 with only 15 competitors. Its explosive growth required race organizers to implement qualifying procedures in 1983. The race field is now limited to 1500 contestants due to the championship nature of the event.

Last year, amid 35 mph headwinds and 95 degree heat, Germany's Thomas Hellriegel claimed his first Ironman championship, crossing the finish line in 8 hours, 33 minutes and 1 second. He led a 1-2-3 German men's sweep. The women's race saw Canadian Heather Fuhr literally outrun the field by clocking the fifth fastest women's marathon in race history. Of the 1479 race starters, 1365 finished. Competitors ranged in age from 18 to 80.

Andy has overcome several major cycling injuries over the years to reach his goal of participating in the Ironman race. The SILS community is proud to offer its congratulations on qualifying and best wishes for success October 3.

The School of Information and Library Science is home to approximately 250 graduate students, 70 undergraduates and 19 full-time faculty members. It prepares students to work with computer information systems and networks or for careers in library administration, acquisitions, collections management and other aspects of library work. The school offers master's degrees in information science and library science, a certificate of advanced study, a doctor of philosophy in information and library science and an undergraduate minor in information systems.