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Triathlon Ontario Announces Changes to Ontario Summer Games Format and Qualification

unnamed (2)Triathlon Ontario  announced yesterday it has recently received approval from the Sport Alliance Ontario (SAO) to make a number of changes to the format and qualification process for the Ontario Summer Games triathlon event for 2016’s event in Mississauga.  The purposes of these changes is to better align the Ontario Summer Games with the goals and objectives Triathlon Ontario’s Provincial Development Program and better prepare the province’s elite youth and first year juniors for the next level of their development.There are three major changes to the Ontario Summer Games for triathlon and they are as follows:

 Individual Event to Become Draft Legal
Historically, the individual event has been a non-draft legal event.  In the context of a major event like the Ontario Summer Games, the usual prohibited issues for staging a draft legal race such as permitting for road closures, extra costs for policing for an individual race director are not a factor.  Host cities, along with the SAO and Triathlon Ontario are committed to work closely to overcome any challenges that a draft legal race versus a non-draft legal race may present.All athletes will need to be draft legal certified prior to the Games in order to compete.  When reviewing the most recent Games’ athletes, on average about 50 per cent of the athletes that have participated in the previous two Games were already draft legal certified.  As per its Provincial Development Program, Triathlon Ontario believes by offering more opportunities and incentive for youth and juniors to race draft legal races, Ontario’s depth of high performance and elite athletes will increase and the pathway to future provincial, national and even international success will be more clear for athletes, parents, coaches and clubs.

Relay Event to Become a Medal Event
In previous Games, the relay event was run as a participation/demonstration event, designed to introduce the concept of a mixed relay on a shortened sprint course to the younger athletes.  The format of a female/male/female/male team completing each a swim/bike/run has gained in popularity on the National and International stage and will no doubt become and Olympic event.  Triathlon Ontario believes in the credibility of the event and the Ontario Summer Games is a perfect venue to provide Ontario’s youth and juniors with this development opportunity.The format will be such that each team is made up of two females and two males.  Each athlete will complete a shortened swim/bike/run course before tagging the next teammate who will then in turn, complete the course and tag the next teammate and so on.  The order will be female/male/female/male and the teams will be determined based on the previous day’s individual results.  The exact team selection is currently being finalized but the objective will be to create as even teams as possible for the relays.

Qualification Will Take Place Within Youth Cup Series

In previous years, the qualification process included regional races that restricted athlete qualification based on where they lived.  As a result, the qualification process did not always ensure the best athletes qualified, only that the province was geographically well represented at the Games.  While geographic representation is important, Triathlon Ontario believes that ensuring the best athletes qualify for an elite competition such the Ontario Summer Games is more important.
Qualification spots for the 2016 Ontario Summer Games will be allocated to races that make up the 2015 Ontario Youth Cup Series.  Those dates and locations are currently being assessed and will be announced in due course.  There will be a certain amount of spots held back for a one-off qualifier in 2016  prior to the Games as has been done in previous years.  Athletes are free to try to qualify at any event they choose.  Athletes that were born in 2000 or 2001 will be eligible for the 2016 Ontario Summer Games.  Athletes must be members of Triathlon Ontario prior to the qualification event and must be members again in the year of the competition (prior to the event).

Visit: triathlonontario.com


from press release