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(CNN) — (CNN) -- A 46-year-old man from Austin, Texas, died Sunday during the swim portion of the Escape from Alcatraz Triathlon in San Francisco, according to race officials.
"We have reason to believe the gentleman suffered from a massive cardiac event as he entered the water and began the swim," race director Bill Burke said in a statement.
"Water safety noticed him immediately and initiated CPR while he was in the water and as they transferred him to land," he added.
Burke said he believes the man's death marks the first in the triathlon's 33-year history.
"The thoughts and prayers of the entire Escape from Alcatraz Triathlon team are with the family and friends of the racer as they mourn this loss," he said.
The statement did not identify the triathlete who died.
The race, which took place in June last year, was scheduled earlier this year to accommodate the 2013 America's Cup. The change in date meant athletes competed in colder conditions.
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