LINKEDINCOMMENTMORE

FORT LEE, N.J. (AP) - An athlete competing in the Ironman U.S. Championship in the river between New York City and New Jersey has died after having a medical problem during the swimming portion of the grueling triathlon.

A publicist for the race organizers says the competitor "experienced distress" during a 2.4-mile swim in the Hudson River at the start of the all-day competition.

The swimmer was taken to a hospital, but did not survive. The organizers say the cause of death is unknown. An autopsy is planned.

Contestants in the race were following their swim in the Hudson with a 112-mile bicycle ride through the suburbs, and then a 26.2-mile marathon that was to end at Manhattan's Riverside Park.

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

Read or Share this story: http://on.ksdk.com/1b0Xg9l