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Mary Cain, who sued Nike for abuse, sets sights on triathlon

Teenage running phenom to compete at draft-legal event in Florida

Photo by: Mary Cain Instagram

Teenage running phenom Mary Cain will compete at this weekend’s draft-legal Clermont Challenge. Cain was once one of America’s most promising runners and, at 16, was recruited by Alberto Salazar to be part of the Nike Oregon Project (NOP). In 2019 Cain shocked the world when she told The New York Times that she had been emotionally and physically abused while training with Salazar and the NOP. Cain has since filed a $20 million lawsuit against Nike and Salazar over the alleged abuse.

According to Triathlete magazine, Cain has been training with Paulo Sousa’s Triathlon Squad. Growing up in Bronxville, New York, Cain was an age-group swimmer before focusing on running, and obviously is a phenomenal runner. How well she’ll pick up the cycling portion of the sport will be the big question around her successful move to the sport.


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If Cain can successfully master all three legs of the sport she’ll join some impressive company – other runners who have enjoyed triathlon success include 2016 Olympic gold medalist Gwen Jorgensen, along with 2021 silver medalist Alex Yee and fellow Great Britain national team member Beth Potter.

As part of Sousa’s Triathlon Squad Cain has been training with fellow American Summer Rappaport and Claire Michel. There were seven members of the team competing in Tokyo last summer.

Cain will compete in the National Development Race in Clermont as she seeks to attain elite points. Canada’s Dominika Jamnicky will lead a large Canadian contingent in the women’s elite race along with Kira Gupta-Baltazar, Sophia Howell, Laurin Thorne, Colette Reimer, Rachel Faulds, Trinity Braithwaite, Andreanne Briere-Dulude and Hannah Milic.

You can find out more about the Clermont Draft Legal Challenge here.