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Kids Clinic Kicks Off Packed Youth & Junior Nationals Weekend
WEST CHESTER, Ohio — The USA Triathlon Youth & Junior National Championships event weekend kicked off Friday morning with a kids clinic at Voice of America Park where more than 850 athletes are expected to compete in the sold-out races Saturday and Sunday.
The clinic featured USA Triathlon Certified Coaches taking 100 youth athletes through swim, bike, run and transition stations on the race course and offering advice for race day.
“Our certified coaches and volunteers helped make this clinic a success,” said Ellis Schieman, USA Triathlon’s Coaching Specialty Manager. “This is a great opportunity for the athletes to familiarize themselves with the course and learn some tips from top coaches before racing gets under way tomorrow.”
In addition to the clinic, athletes were picking up their race packets, visiting the expo, previewing the course and hanging out with their families, teammates and fellow competitors.
Nicolas Raffinengo, 11, came to West Chester with his parents from Boynton Beach, Fla., and is racing at nationals for the third straight year.
“The competition gets me excited to come here,” Raffinengo said. “You have to train all year and it’s just intense.”
Raffinengo’s father, Marcelo, was with his son as he went through pre-race preparations and commented on triathlon’s impact in kids’ lives.
“This sport is amazing,” Marcelo Raffinengo said. “It’s such a great sport for kids because it helps them stay fit and eat right, plus my son does much better with his grades when he’s training than when he’s not as it teaches time management.”
Racing begins Saturday, Aug. 2 at 8 a.m. with the Junior Elite (ages 16-19) and Youth Elite (ages 13-15) National Championships. Junior elites will complete a 750-meter swim, 20-kilometer bike, 5-kilometer run course, while youth elites race a 375m swim, 10k bike, 2.5k run course. Junior elite and youth elites will also compete in the Mixed Team Relay event at 8 a.m. on Sunday, Aug. 3 with a draft-legal team relay for athletes ages 13-19, in which four competitors (two male, two female) will each complete a 250m swim, a 5k bike and a 1.2k run.
The age-group Youth National Championships will begin at 2:30 p.m. on Saturday, and will feature athletes ages 7-15, with national titles awarded to each age division. The competitive distances range from a 100m swim, 5k bike and a 1k run for ages 7-10 to a 200m swim, 10k bike and 2k run for athletes ages 11-15.
Visit usatriathlon.org/usatyjr14 for more information on the event.
About USA Triathlon
USA Triathlon is proud to serve as the National Governing Body for triathlon, as well as duathlon, aquathlon, aquabike, winter triathlon, off-road triathlon and paratriathlon in the United States. Founded in 1982, USA Triathlon sanctions more than 4,300 races and connects with nearly 500,000 members each year, making it the largest multisport organization in the world. In addition to its work with athletes, coaches and race directors on the grassroots level, USA Triathlon provides leadership and support to elite athletes competing at international events, including International Triathlon Union (ITU) World Championships, Pan American Games and the Olympic and Paralympic Games. USA Triathlon is a proud member of the ITU and the United States Olympic Committee (USOC).