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Sunday 21 October 2018

Give swim, run or cycle race a 'Tri'

Kennedy Park NS teachers taking part in this year’s Pikeman Triathlon: Sorcha Traynor, Nicola Gregg and Martha McLoughlin
Kennedy Park NS teachers taking part in this year’s Pikeman Triathlon: Sorcha Traynor, Nicola Gregg and Martha McLoughlin

Anna Hayes

The countdown is on to Wexford Triathlon Club's Pikeman Triathlon event which takes place in Rosslare on June 24 and one club member is keen to promote the event amongst people who would never dream of even attempting such a feat.

Marie Breen, from Staplestown came up with the idea of offering a relay system to make the event less daunting for people. A triathlon requires the participant to swim 1500m, cycle 40km and run 10km.

However, Marie is hoping that people will team up and take part in even just one section of the event.

So far, Marie has a number of locals that have committed to taking part, including Cllr George Lawlor and 1996 All Ireland winner Larry O'Gorman. She is keen to have peole from all walks of life and was especially delighted to offer advice to teachers Sorcha Traynor, Nicola Gregg and Martha McLoughlin of Kennedy Park NS who are taking part as a relay team.

Marie said: 'The people who walk from one end of town to the other would be able to walk the 10km - you don't have to run, you can walk, shuffle, whatever you like. Everyone has some sort of bike in their house and 40km is very doable. Even the swimming, there's nothing to say that you can't walk the distance if you can't swim.'

Marie remarked that anyone who could do all three parts of the event would be competing but said that they would be able to link people up with swimmers if they wanted to take part.

'My aim is to get more people involved. It's open to teams of three and everyone gets a free t-shirt and a medal. It's all about getting people motivated. Exercise is so important in terms of mental health too.'

Marie is no stranger to triathlons, having competed in numerous Ironman competitions over the past five years, following serious illness.

At the age of 60, she was diagnosed with Stage 3 bowel cancer, subsequently enduring six months of gruelling chemotherapy. Despite that however, Marie's determination and positive attitude saw her back on the roads, whether on bicycle or foot, training for her first Ironman.

'Exercise definitely focused my attention away from the worries of whether I was going to live or die,' said Marie.

Marie has qualified for the Ironman World Championships twice in the Over 60s cateogry. This year, she won the 65-69 age group competition and will compete at the World Championships in South Africa later in the year.

For more information on the Pikeman Triathlon, contact Marie on 087 2342 956, or sign up online at www.wextriclub.com.

Wexford People

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