Triathlete Caught in The Act of Cheating at Chula Vista


I received an email on Monday morning with the subject line “Chula Vista Challenge Cheater”.

The portion of the course where the alleged cheating took place was during the run. The run totals 13.1 miles and consists of 3 loops as shown below.

The photos below were included in the email:


In the sequence of photos above, the registered competitor (the male) is seen transferring his bib belt and his ankle strap to the female. (The email stated this was his wife – I have not been able to confirm their relationship).

To confirm – they were not part of a relay. He appears in the results of the Individual Long Course.

His run portion does appear on Strava.

Strava log showing 8.7 miles run.
Map showing his location at the end of the Strava entry

As mentioned previously, the run course is 13.1 miles, consisting of 3 loops. His Strava data shows that he ran approximately 2 loops. Combined with the photo evidence, it is clear that he ran 2 loops, and then passed off his bib and ankle strap to the other runner after the 2nd loop.

They are also shown transferring the bib and ankle strap again prior to the finish.

















Photos have not yet been uploaded for the event. The tipster confirmed that the male did finish the race. His overall time did not win any awards.


I am really not sure what this competitor’s motivation was other than avoiding a potential DNF. Additional photos showed he may have been dealing with blisters. However, it also appears that the accomplice was fully prepared to take over at some point. She was not dressed as a spectator – she was outfitted like a competitor.

I decided to highlight this case to show that there is cheating at all levels of sport. This particular story has already been shared on, and on reddit. The race is aware and this situation has been reported to the USAT. This runner risks a potential ban from future triathlons.

Even if you are not a competitive triathlete, you could be banned from competitions if you cheat. Do not take the risk. Hopefully giving this story a bit more publicity will serve as a warning and a deterrent to others.



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  1. There is nothing shameful about a DNF! Things happen during a race! When you cheat during a race it’s disgraceful! You didn’t earn the medal.

  2. This infuriates me!! How can you begin to feel ok about this or feel accomplished. I have DNfd and it was a hard decision but at least I have my integrity. BAN them both

  3. I have had a DNF in a half-iron distance race and I won’t lie – it sucks! Some days just aren’t your day (flat tires, injury, better training maybe?), accept it and move on to the next race. The races I participate in are mainly triathlon so I appreciate seeing these articles come out, and I enjoy the run only ones as well.

    Derek, I appreciate your efforts (and those who provide tips) in getting the word out that cheaters will be exposed. I can only hope this might help someone think twice before attempting it.

  4. Keep up the good work!
    This is a punishable offense by USA Triathlon that results in a suspension.
    I’d also consider contacting Nytro if this guy is racing in their kit. They have a long history of great multisport athletes and I’m guessing that they’d find this pretty disappointing.

    • Keep exposing this loser cheater!

      This was a good event….I hate to see things like this…Not fair to the people who play by the rules.

      On another note the Fil Am Tri Tent in the background is always the best cheering section at San Diego races. It’s clearly late in the day because the tent is nearly empty except for Joy 🙂 Earlier in the day it was rocking.

  5. good afternoon
    With all due respect they deserve I comment on the note they have of chula vista challenge
    I apologize to all your forum and you
    I comment on my side of the version
    I was trying to involve my wife in the sport and thank her for all the support she gives me in training so I forced her to do the last lap and maybe I was wrong because I did not know the rules of the game in the photo that I send When I enter the goal appears that I am telling to put the medals to her because she deserves it for being the best wife and mother
    And if I wanted to cheat I could have cut the laps because in mile 2,4,6 could be cut the lap but you can notice in my strava that I did the two laps complete but it will be at your discretion
    and I ask a favor the photo they have on the cover is from a friend is not mine I am whit the redhelmet and please remove my daughters that do not deserve their opinion on them will I thank and greetings and an apology to That he missed her respect thanks so much and sorry and sorry for my English I am not from her

  6. “Even if you are not a competitive triathlete, you could be banned from competitions if you cheat. ”

    I’d rephrase that. Especially if you are not a competitive athlete you should not cheat. Do it for the fun, accomplishment or whatever else. Cheating doesn’t/shouldn’t give you the same satisfaction or sense of achievement. You are paying for this event you won’t get prize money whats the deal? Even a DNF can teach you valuable lessons for the next race or for life.

  7. I saw the original picture where he is giving the timing chip to his wife and their kid is watching the whole exchange. Way to set an example for your kid!

  8. I think this guy is just one of those guys who likes to ride an expensive bike on the weekends, wear fancy outfits, and say he does some races. Not really a malignant cheater (like many outed here including the latest Disney penguin) but rather just a guy who is a recreational participant who probably saw nothing wrong in doing what he did. I’m not defending him or saying what he did is acceptable.

  9. Right, this guy is not so much a cheater in the same vein as the BQ cheaters on this site as a BOP recreational athlete who thought it would be fun to give his wife a turn. It’s not right, and unsafe, but it’s more just poor judgement than detracting from those trying to compete. I would lose sleep over this one.

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