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Tri Edge Endurance Radio
As we have recently come off the National weekend of racing, for most national Triathlon governing bodies around this world this now becomes the busiest time of the year as we move to selection for the ITU World Championship teams.
Every year the ITU holds a World Triathlon Championship. This race changes location every year and covers some of the most idyllic courses in the World. Aside from elite competitors there is always a full day of racing for age-group athletes in their respective age categories. Triathlon is one of the few sports in the world where you have the opportunity, irrespective of age, to represent your country at the official World Championships event each year. Having been to many myself as an Elite and age-group competitor, I can say Worlds is a fantastic experience. For youth it is a key developmental pathway and precursor to professional racing and for age group athletes it is a beautiful way to represent your country at the highest level.
This year the World Championship venues are as follows:
So why does Singapore not have a formalized age group World Championship team each year?
Looking through the Triathlon Association of Singapore website there is a one page ambiguous outline on age group world champs, with no formal process for selection. Is it simply that TAS feels local athletes are not good enough, or is there no way for TAS to profit from an age-group selection and management process? Having spoken with TAS on the subject and years of members emailing for details, we are no closer to any formal answer by the national body.
Personally I feel it would be awesome to have Singapore as a nation to attend the Worlds each year with a 50 person strong team. Having worked within Triathlon New Zealand and seen the process end to end, to make the job easy for TAS, below is a tried and proven blueprint to World Age Group selection success.
Set down the following selection criteria for Age Group World Championships Selection:
The selection committee should be made of 3 selectors. One representative from TAS and two others who are independent of the national body. (Should TAS need volunteers for this selection panel I will FREELY give my time to be one of 3 necessary, impartial selectors)
Within the selection committee there should also be a code of ethics as follows:
Selection, payment and other details. So given the above selection criteria is in place, at prize giving on the day of the National Championships there could also be a selection announcement and athletes given a one month notice to make a race ‘deposit’ as establishing the 15% cut off is a very simple process. As an age-group athlete attending the World Championships this is a self-paid adventure. Things that would need to be bought are:
Once this is all tidy, the national governing ITU body would then have a list of athletes (with deposits) to enter into the World Championship event. Full payment by the athletes is made and collected prior to payment to ITU.
The World Champs is such a fun and amazing experience. Lets all hope that for the sake of age-group athletes across Singapore that, TAS can start taking this more seriously, formalizing the process and give all Singapore athletes the chance to be a part of a World Championship team.
Professional Triathlon Training