In a year where there’s been precious little racing, 19 Canadian pros will be lining up tomorrow morning to take part in the Canadian Pro Triathlon Championship.
Thanks to the Professional Triathletes Organisation, the event will offer $20,000 in prize money, and each of the racers has been given a $500 appearance fee to help with expenses.With support from Barrie Shepley and the C3-Canadian Cross Training Club, the standard-distance event (1.5 km swim, 40 km bike, 10 km run) will utilize the same course as the “old school” triathlon series run this summer. The swim will be done as a time trial separate from the bike and run – the athletes will start the bike in order of their swim finish.
The race will feature an interesting mix of long-course athletes and ITU specialists. We caught up with three of them at today’s press conference:
Two-time Olympian and four-time Ironman champion Brent McMahon turns 40 in a few days, but that doesn’t make him any less a threat for the win.
“It’s so good – after doing some virtual racing, to get in and do some mano-o-mano racing and just have the experience we’re used to regularly, and to do it in a safe way, as well, is a great opportunity,” he said. “None of us want to take risks for our families or our friends, so to be able to come out, to know we have a safe environment and know we’re going to be healthy when we head back home is phenomenal.”
“With 40 just around the corner, it’s pretty exciting to go back to my roots, which is the ITU days and go against the new and up and coming ITU guys, and see what I’ve got left in my legs,” he continued. “I’ve been working on my speed as of late, so the timing for this event is perfect and so it is really exciting to be where I’m at age-wise and have my speed come back and be able to test it in a race format that is the Olympic distance. Really it’s a bit of a dream come true.”
2016 Olympian Amelie Kretz competed at the ITU World Cup in Mooloolaba, just before the ITU shut down racing due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Since then she’s done a few running races in Quebec, but is looking forward to competing in a triathlon again.
“I’m feeling really good,” she said. “I’m probably the fittest I’ve been in five or six years, so I’m feeling really good and excited to be racing swim, bike, run together for the second time this year.”
“I’ve never done a non-drafting race, so it should be interesting,” she continued. “There are some strict rules we have to get in our head, but I think it’s a great course and it should be fun to mix it up with the different athletes. It’s what this year is about – just mixing it up and having fun through this pandemic.”
The two-time bronze medalist at the ITU Long Distance World Championships was also able to race early in the season, but is very much looking forward to the race.
“I was one of the lucky ones to do the last few races in 2020 before everything shut down,” she said. “It’s pretty special to be here at this race in Ontario. The fact that Jackson and Taylor have put this together for the Canadian pros, and its really cool to meet some of the short course, younger ITU athletes and compete against them – it’s really special to be able to do this in the context of what’s going on right now.”
“Obviously, as a long course athlete, I know that I’m going to have a lot of work to do on the bike, so I’m really hoping that’s going to be my forte,” she continued. “I will definitely be starting behind these fast ITU folks out of the water. I’ve been spending a lot of time on the bike – I was actually training for Canadian National TT champs this year before it was cancelled, so I’m feeling really strong on the bike, and definitely have some speed in the legs for the run, so we’ll see how it compares to everyone else.”
- Dominika Jamnicky
- Tamara Jewett
- Karol-Ann Roy
- Amelie Kretz
- Rachel McBride
- Pamela Ann Bachelder St-Pierre
- Kristen Marchant
- Kira Gupta-Baltazar
- Elise Bolger
- Jackson Laundry
- Taylor Reid
- Cody Beals
- Brent McMahon
- Jason Pohl
- Jeremy Briand
- Charles Paquet
- Liam Donnelly
- Tristen Jones
- Francis Lefebvre
Find out more about the event here.