My first Triathlon season by Leo Riggs Aged 8
I couldn't wait until the 1st January 2015. I could finally apply for my
British Triathlon race licence. When it arrived in the post I got straight on the Internet to look for children's Tristar triathlon events. Mum helped me search events in the south and we came up with a list of aquathlon and triathlon events. Mum became my booking secretary and entered me into several events. This gave me something to work towards.
I started training with my dad. I wrote my own timetable so he would know what we were doing each night. He needed a bit of motivation on the bike so I helped him out a bit! A few lengths of the pool one night, a couple of laps around the block another and a few trips to the velodrome. I was race ready!
My first race was a triathlon in Wimborne, Dorset. I was really nervous but my friend was doing it too so it was nice to see a familiar face. All of the marshalls were really nice and made sure we knew exactly what to do and where to go. I really enjoyed it and came 2nd.
My next race was an aquathlon in Yeovil and a very early start! I had all my kit ready the night before and checked it off against my list. We ate breakfast on the way and registered in plenty of time. It was a really well organised event and the marshals were all really friendly again. I had a good swim but an even better run and came 1st. I got a really nice trophy which I was really proud of.
The next event was the Kingfisher aquathlon in South London. This is where I met the lovely people at Tribe junior. A whole stand of children's triathlon clothing and accessories. Mum said it would have saved her hours trawling the Internet looking for children's triathlon wear! Their branding and logo was really cool and after a conversation with the company owners, Matt and Paula, they agreed that I could race under their team name. Another 1st place at the Kingfisher and new team name. It was an awesome day!
I choose to do an aquathlon for my birthday too. Chapel Tri made me feel really welcome, caught up with Tribe junior and came 1st. Best birthday ever!
Lots more triathlons over the following months. Including Trinity and Shaftesbury. My first lake swim was not a good experience as the water was horrible. I was covered with weed and muck. Unfortunately this played on my mind and after a 2 hour drive to Eton Dorney kids supertri I very nearly dropped out at the last minute. I was so scared, however, when the whistle went I couldn't help but jump in. I was so pleased I did. It was an awesome race in an amazing venue. Saw some familiar faces too. It was nice that I recognised and could chat to a few of the other children. A 3rd place at Eton Dorney was a good achievement but swimming the lake was a bigger one.
I kept practicing my transitions as this is what had slowed me down a little and got out on the bike a bit more. Another water challenge awaited me at the Portland Aquathlon. An open water sea swim and jelly fish! Masses of them. I was assured by others that they wouldn't sting but I wasn't so sure. In the end I went for it and got my fastest swim time! I was really keen to get out of the water! 1st place and sea swim conquered.
My most recent triathlon was in Sherborne. Another beautiful venue and the Wessex wizards had it well organised. I had my biggest transition disaster here. We had coloured bibs to put on and I got in a complete muddle. Head in arm hole, upside down and inside out. Got there in the end but had a lot of chasing down to do. I caught 2 places on the cycle and passed 1 on the run to make me the 1st boy.
I have had a blast this year. Been to lots of new places and met some really cool people. Looking forward to Hever Castle in September. I just wish I had a good local triathlon club to join. There seems to be a real shortage, especially in Doset. I will keep training with dad, although it won't be long before he can't keep up! Thanks to all of the people and clubs who have put on some awesome events this year. I would encourage any young person to give triathlon a go!