Six ath­letes com­pet­ing in triathlon

P.E.I. sail­ing, swim­ming teams ready for competition

The Guardian (Charlottetown) - - SPORTS - Fran­cois Caron

The sport of triathlon was in­tro­duced at the 2009 Canada Games for the first time and, as the host prov­ince, we were at­tempt­ing to have ath­letes in­volved in as many sports as pos­si­ble.

I can re­mem­ber my Canada Games men­tor Ted Lawlor and his “best ever” com­mit­tee work­ing to es­tab­lish a triathlon as­so­ci­a­tion in the prov­ince to see if some ath­letes could be trained to par­tic­i­pate in the sport.

Dur­ing those Games, we had one ath­lete par­tic­i­pate in the event, but it was a spring­board for what was to come. In 2013, we sent five ath­letes and dur­ing the 2017 Games in Win­nipeg we will be send­ing a full del­e­ga­tion of six ath­letes (three male and three fe­male).

Jamie Why­nacht coaches this team and has spent a con­sid­er­able amount of time build­ing their en­durance and tech­nique in the three dis­ci­plines of swim­ming, cy­cling and run­ning.

The ath­letes will com­pete at the Birds Hill Pro­vin­cial Park in the in­di­vid­ual sprint (750-me­tre swim, a 20-kilo­me­tre bike ride and a five-kilo­me­tre run), the mixed relay and team re­lays. The re­lays in­volve a shorter dis­tance with each ath­lete com­plet­ing a super sprint dis­tance be­fore hand­ing off the bracelet to their part­ner.

The team has at­tended a num­ber of triathlons in At­lantic Canada this sea­son, in­clud­ing par­tic­i­pat­ing in the draft le­gal (un­der-26) event at the Tri-lob­ster Triathlon race in Sum­mer­side a few week­ends ago. That race was won by Nick Robert­son.

Swim­ming

The Pan Am Pool in Win­nipeg will be busy dur­ing the sec­ond week of competition as the swim­mers be­gin their event.

The action at the pool is usu­ally loud, fierce and com­pet­i­tive as the swim­mers work their way through the pre­lim­i­nary rounds, in a va­ri­ety of strokes, with the hope of qual­i­fy­ing for the fi­nals.

Ear­lier this month, the P.E.I. swim­mers at­tended a meet in Saint John, N.B., and the team list was re­leased shortly after­wards. Many of the swim­mers re­cently headed back to Saint John for a train­ing camp.

The 33-mem­ber team in­cludes 28 swim­mers and four coaches, in­clud­ing Tom Ponting, Donna Profit, Sarah Payn­ter

and Edie Rogers, and team man­ager Scott Drum­mond. There are some ath­letes and coaches with Canada Games ex­pe­ri­ence, but for the most part the swim­mers will be new to the Canada Games ex­pe­ri­ence.

The team in­cludes ath­letes who will com­pete in the paraswim­ming and Spe­cial Olympic swim­ming events.

Sail­ing

While both the triath­letes and swim­mers will be com­pet­ing in Win­nipeg, the sail­ing team will be com­pet­ing in Gimli, which is about an hour north of Win­nipeg.

They will have a satel­lite vil­lage where they will stay for the week while com­pet­ing on Lake Win­nipeg. The five-per­son sail­ing team is coached by Eric Da­ge­nais, who com­peted in sail­ing at the 2009 Games.

Mak­ena Cud­more will par­tic­i­pate in the sin­gle-handed laser while Gavin Kerr and Jack Morse will pair up to com­pete in the dou­ble-han­der 29er. The ath­letes will com­pete in two or three races per day, and the points tally up through the week for fi­nal plac­ings.

The sailors have been busy on the waters prepar­ing for the competition, and soon the boats will be loaded on a trailer to be driven to Man­i­toba.

Fran­cois Caron is the cen­tral re­gion co-or­di­na­tor for the sport, recre­ation and phys­i­cal ac­tiv­ity divi­sion of the P.E.I. Depart­ment of Health and Well­ness. He has at­tended nine Games and will be Team P.E.I.’s as­sis­tant chef de mis­sion dur­ing the sec­ond week of the 2017 Canada Games.

JA­SON MAL­LOY/THE GUARDIAN

The swim­ming team poses for a photo in front of the 2017 sign on the wa­ter­front in Char­lot­te­town af­ter the Team P.E.I. rally ear­lier this month. The team is prepar­ing for the Canada Games in Win­nipeg in Au­gust.

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