This weekend, Ottawa is welcoming some of Canada’s best triathletes who are gathered to compete in the Ottawa International Triathlon 2017 event.
Some of the elite competitors include some of the Canada’s youngest triathlon talents, age 6 to 15 who are trying to qualify for the Commonwealth Games competition that will take place next year in Australia.
This weekend’s competition, on Saturday, gathered 14 and 15 year olds to show their dedication, passion and give a great and admiring performance despite their level of experience.
One of the young triathlete trainers, Greg Kealey, admitted the process to be more important that the overall result. This due to the fact, these young triathletes are still in the learning phase of their passion. They need to build their knowledge through time and dedication.
“Our focus in our club is process over performance. So we really reward people who change habits or behaviors in training, as opposed to how fast they do it,” added Kealey. “It’s just reinforcing the message that we value doing things properly over doing things fast.”
Sharon Donnelly, the race director, has high hopes and expectations when seeing the true talent and dedication the young generation of triathletes are constantly showing.
She herself was a world-class triathlete. She competed in the first-ever Olympic triathlon back in 2000. Being so close to this sport has made her truly see how young talents are constantly making it their main focus sport.
She added: “Back in my time, we all were from swimming, or running. Now it’s a chosen sport for the young kids. And I think as a parent—because I have a nine and an 11-year-old—it’s really neat because it’s a mix of all three.”
— Wellington Warriors (@wellywarriortri) June 17, 2017
As a former elite athlete, Donnelly advises parents to promote and boost their kid’s talent and passion. “If they really love it, go for it. But make sure they’re well-rounded. Don’t choose a program too quickly. But the most important thing is that you support them.”- added Donnelly