Future stars of swim, bike, run showcase their talent at AJ Bell 2022 WTCS Leeds

11 June, 2022

The future stars of swim, bike, run got the chance to race on the same weekend as the world’s elite with events held in TriStar 2, TriStar3 and Youth on day one of AJ Bell 2022 World Triathlon Championship Series Leeds.

The TriStar 2, 3 and Youth racing saw participants between the ages of 11-17 compete in Roundhay Park against other athletes of a similar age.

TriStar 2 was open to participants aged 11-12 who took part in a 200m swim, 5km bike and 1.7km run with Gregory Read and Pollyanna Kershaw the first finishers.

Speaking after crossing the line first, Read said: “I’m feeling exhausted, but it means a lot to me. I have done triathlon my whole life and it’s really fun and I like it a lot, so to be able to cross under the same finish as the athletes who I’ve been watching my entire life is a massive inspiration for me.”

TriStar 3 brought together teenagers aged 13-14, who completed the same distance on the bike as TriStar 2, but TriStar 3 included a longer swim (300m) and run (2.5km).

14-year-old Isabella Waugh crossed the line first in the female event and after finishing said: “It means a lot because I’ve put in a lot of hard work in training, so it’s a bit of a relief but really amazing to have been able to win today in Leeds.

“Everyone was cheering along the route, lots of people I don’t know, so that’s really nice and it does give me confidence and really pushed me on to get the win. Getting the trophy on the podium in front of so many people was also a really great moment too.”

Tristan Robbin was first in the TriStar 3 male event and reflected by saying: “I’m really happy. It was really good to be a part of it all. There was a lot of people cheering each other on. I love the competitive aspect of it and the atmosphere was really good to race in.”

Athletes aged 15-17 raced in the Youth category with their event covering a 200m swim, 9.5km bike and a 2.5km run.

Lauren Mitchell has already had success this year with victories at both the Performance Assessments and Llanelli events of the British Triathlon Youth Super Series.

Mitchell came out on top again during the Youth racing in Leeds, although not a Super Series event, finishing first.

Commenting after claiming the win, Mitchell said: “It’s really nice, I wasn’t expecting it really because I’m not amazing at hills and this course had a few hills on it, so I’m really pleased. I’ve competed at this event before and I love it because it’s so surreal to race on part of the course as the elites.

“It’s a really nice atmosphere, there are people everywhere. It’s such a cool finish line and to think that the world’s best athletes are going to be on that screen in just a few hours is such a cool feeling.”

Charlie claimed the win in the Youth male race and after said: “It feels amazing, and it means a lot to be able to get the same finish experience as the elites. During those last 100 metres, you know you’re going through what the elites will go through later on is a great feeling.”

All athletes got to experience the same iconic blue carpet finish as the elite athletes in the afternoon with the event bringing together over 3,000 participants of all ages and abilities to take part in swim, bike, run events.