Thomas: Finntriathlon – Proud Day
- Julkaistu: 24.07.2013 07:55
Finntriathlon has a rich history as an event and I am proud to become a part of that history. Celebrating its 30th edition this year, it is with great pleasure that I can add my name to the list of winners for the 2nd year in a row. The occasion has been made all the most special because I earned my Finnish citizenship just a few days prior to the event!
Every year my fitness and focus comes together to provide an exceptional day of racing at Finntriathlon. Triathlon has made me a part of the Finnish society and I owe a lot to the sport because of that. The development of my triathlon racing has quite closely paralleled the growth of Finntriathlon. When I moved to Finland 7 years ago and did my first proper triathlon at Finntriathlon, the event had about 200 participants and a very low key atmosphere. As I discovered triathlon suited me well and began to push my own limits more, the race also developed and the past few years have seen exponential growth for the race. This year the race had over 1000 participants in the 1/2 distance event.
The satisfaction over my own success was equally matched with seeing how well the race has grown with a vast expo area, thousands of supportive fans and an atmosphere that equals or betters any international event I have done. When I first started working with my US based coach, it took some explaining why I needed to be in good form for Finntriathlon, while I still had many other international races on my calendar that in theory were more important. Now with my 2nd win and a marked improvement in performance, I believe my coach fully understands how Finntriathlon defines me as a triathlete in Finland.
I still strive for international success and that motivates me for the long term pursuit of maximizing my athletic abilities, but Finntriathlon is a yearly ritual for me, my family, and a thousand other people in Finland who call triathlon their sport. I am proud to have won an event that brings so much excitement to the sport community and even more proud have done so as a Finnish citizen!
A huge thanks goes to the organizers and volunteers of Finntriathlon for putting together a top-class event. I also want to say thanks to my lovely wife Emilia for being the best support crew, my kids for being super cheerleaders, our au pairs for helping to support our family’s crazy schedules, my coach Jesse for believing in my abilities, and to all my sponsors for supporting my race schedule this year.