Surf’s up for Queen’s triathlete

Kevin Gregg competes in Ironman Hawaii

“If you are a triathlete, there is no bigger day in this sport,” says the website for the Ford Ironman World Championship. “It is the race that defined our sport as it came of age and continues to be the defining race in our sport for any avid triathlete.”

It was at this event in Kona, Hawaii, that Kevin Gregg of the Queen’s Triathlon Club competed on Oct. 21. Queen’s sole representative at the race and one of the 10 youngest triathletes attending, Gregg said the race was more than just a physical challenge.

“[The race] wasn’t so much about trying to win or place well, but to overcome the distance and the mental aspects of racing at that distance.”

Gregg was one of the 1,700 athletes—of more than 10,000 applicants—who earned the opportunity to tackle the grueling 2.4-mile swim, 112-mile bike, and 26.2-mile marathon. After competing in his fifth Iron Man competition, Gregg said that, given the level of competition and the difficulty of the course, he was satisfied. “[It] was the slowest but by far the hardest conditions I’ve ever raced in—swells in the ocean, wind and rain and humidity, and hills on the bike and again on the run.” Gregg isn’t the only triathlete to represent Queen’s abroad. Club President Claire Michel said, “We have sent … Kevin to Hawaii, Dave Clinkard to Switzerland [and]Jr. Worlds, and Dave Barbic to Ironman Brazil and Wisconsin all within the last year.” The team has also won the Ontario University Multisport Series (UMS) for the past three years and will be looking for a fourth win this year.

The Ontario UMS is league of seven university triathlon clubs who compete from October to March. Gregg is optimistic about the team’s progress. “There are many promising upand- coming athletes both at short course and long course distances and the team should have a good future.” he said. “With the growth of our team over the last four years and, given the boom in the sport right now, I see great things in the future of Queen’s triathlon.” This weekend the team will host the Hammer Dash & Burn Mountain Bike Duathlon at Myles Acres. The event is the UMS’ first this year. Competitors will run, bike and then run again. Rookies will run for two kilometers, bike for five, and then run for wo, while veterans will double those distances. Registration was open to all students aswell as the Kingston community. “We have about 90 racers this year,” race rganizer Laura Franklin said, adding that the race attracts athletes not only from the Queen’s triathlon and mountain bike teams, but also from schools like Western, the University of Toronto and McGill.

Franklin said the Queen’s team is made up of athletes of all levels. “The team is open to all students, from beginners to advanced athletes.” Franklin said. “We hold 13 practices a week and participants can go to as many or as few as they’d like.” For more information on the Queen’s triathlon team, visit

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