The start line is in sight for Leeds’ next weekend in the sporting limelight – prompting a drive to get thousands of Yorkshire residents active.
To mark 100 days until the city stages its first ITU World Triathlon Series event on June 12, 2012 Olympic triathlete Lucy Hall has joined council and sports bosses to unveil the Go Tri event in Leeds.
It will be a mini triathlon for people of all abilities at the June 11 Roundhay Park sports festival ahead of the Columbia Threadneedle World Triathlon Leeds and will involve a series of city-wide free sports events.
People looking to sign up to the Go Tri race – 200 metre swim, 10km bike ride and 2.5km run – will be given access to events at Leeds’ four Go Tri training hubs at leisure centres in Fearnville, Armley, Middleton and Woodhouse.
Throughout the coming months allcomers will be able to access everything from free led bike rides and walks to jogs and even special introductory open water swimming classes.
Jenny Vincent, engagement project manager for Leeds’ debut international triathlon, explained that British Triathlon and Leeds City Council are hoping to engage more than 1,600 newcomers in triathlon disciplines this year.
“It’s achievable definitely,” she said. “There’s such an appetite for sport in Leeds already and quite often local people don’t realise they have got the opportunity to do these things.
“It’s important that everybody knows they’ve got that opportunity and can ‘tri’ something new.”
Coun Roger Harington, Leeds City Council cycling champion, said: “You don’t have to be the Brownlees, you can enjoy it at whatever level you’re at.”
There are 500 places available for the £10-entry Go Tri, which is part of the Tri Something New programme linked with the June triathlon weekend. It will involve a sports festival featuring the British Youth & Junior Aquathlon Championships, Tri Star Performance Triathlon and the Triathlon England – National Aquathlon Championships at Roundhay Park on Saturday June 11.
The Columbia Threadneedle World Triathlon Leeds will then see the likes of the Brownlees take on a 1.5km swim through Roundhay’s Waterloo Lake, cycle 42.5km through Leeds and run 10km to the Millennium Square finish on June 12. A mass participation event earlier on the same day will also see thousands of amateurs take on the same route.
Triathlete Lucy Hall, 24, moved to Leeds from Leicester due to the city’s top quality training facilities.
She said: “It’s going to be the best of the best there for the Brits, it’s a really good opportunity to see everyone because the Rio Olympics are halfway across the world. If you do want to see Ali and Jonny [Brownlee] and Vicky [Holland] and Non [Stanford] competing, June 12 is the chance to watch them.”
For further information visit leeds.triathlon.org.