Jeff Glasbrenner's motivational public speaking inspires people all over the world. His opportunity in life came at 8 years old, on the day he was involved in a traumatic farming accident that left him a below-the-knee amputee. Most would call this a tragedy, but he considers this his greatest opportunity, which he chose to embrace by continually excelling in sports, and by being a husband and father to 2 children.
He has risen to a world-class level in several sports. In wheelchair basketball, he holds a National Championship scoring record of 63 points and 27 rebounds in one game, and played in Europe professionally for 3 years. In addition he is a 3 time Paralympian and a 2 time World Champion (Gold Medal). He has completed 20 Ironman triathlons, and has won numerous races in his division.
Isklar Norseman Xtreme Triathlon takes place in Norway, at the latitude of Anchorage, Alaska, and at altitudes from sea level to 1850 m above. These severe geographic reasons make this race one of the most challenging in the world.
Swim: 3.8km. The water temperature at the starting point on race morning was 9° Celsius. Wetsuits are mandatory. The swim begins with a water start, after athletes jump off a ferry.
Bike: 180km through the mountains, the first 40 km of which is uphill (reaching 1200 m above sea level). Run: 42.2km. The first 25km are fairly flat, while the next 17.2km are a consistently steep climb up to Mt. Gaustatoppen, 1,880 m above sea level.
Total distance: 226km
The race is "unsupported" so competitors need to have personal back up crews that follow them with cars to provide them with food and drink. The support crews have to accompany their competitor up the final mountain climb due to the inherent dangers of being highly fatigued on a mountain. During this final mountain climb competitors are required to carry a backpack containing emergency food and clothing should the weather turn. Weather conditions and strict health checks and deadlines determine whether the race can be followed into the mountains , and those that finish are given a black finishers t-shirt and take on the name "Norsemen". Those that do not make the cut-off time but complete the distance on a lower alternative route are given a white finishers t-shirt.
In 2015, Jeff Glassbrenner is the only athlete who partecipates Norseman Extreme Triathlon with a prothesis.