In a year in which there has been few triathlon races, we’re looking to make some changes to our annual Triathlete of the Year awards that have been the mainstay of our January issue for the last 15 years.
It’s not that we want to take away from some of the performances that some of our top Canadians have managed to put together as the world deals with the COVID-19 pandemic.Could we celebrate Jackson Laundry’s incredible comeback and Canadian Professional Triathlon Championship victory by making him our Triathlete of the Year? Or how about the impressive season that Tamara Jewett has put together, outrunning even the pro men at one race and also taking the Canadian pro championship? What about Karsten Madsen’s two Everesting efforts this summer that raised thousands of dollars for the Whistler community? Or Lionel Sanders’s impressive one hour record or Strava KOMs up Mt. Lemmon? Speaking of Mt. Lemmon, what about acknowledging two-time Triathlete of the Year Paula Findlay for her impressive Strava QOMs from earlier this year? Or what if one of those three or another Canadian were to take the Professional Triathletes Organisation’s Championship event with its US$1 million prize purse at Challenge Daytona in December?
All of these are achievements worth celebrating, for sure. That said, one of the main criteria for our Triathlete of the Year award has been performances on the world stage. World championship results have always been an important part of our choice. This year all the world championship events were cancelled except one – World Triathlon held a pro event in Hamburg that was announced with less than two weeks notice and that Canadians, along with athletes from Australia and New Zealand, weren’t able to attend.
It seems appropriate, then, to use our January issue as an opportunity to celebrate a group of people who have made a difference in their communities during this difficult time. Someone like John Yip, for example, the CEO of Kensington Health, who stepped in and started nursing residents of the 350-bed long-term care home his organization runs when staffing became an issue once workers became sick with the COVID-19 virus.
“I couldn’t ask staff to help if I wasn’t able to help out myself,” he told Toronto Life.
I’m sure there are lots of John Yips out there in the Canadian triathlon community across the country. I need your help to identify some of those people so we can write about them in our January issue. I don’t think we need to have any specific criteria – any Canadian triathletes you feel have made a difference will be considered.
Please send any suggestions you might have to firstname.lastname@example.org. I thank you in advance for your help.