Staples Hosts Strong Kids Triathlon

Long Lots Elementary School Student Alexandra Hackett, age six, crosses the finish line and the YMCA Strong Kids Triathlon.

Long Lots Elementary School Student Alexandra Hackett, age six, crosses the finish line and the YMCA Strong Kids Triathlon.

Dylan Donahue , Staff Writer

Thankfully, the weather stayed warm on Sunday for swimming, biking, running, and having fun as kids participated in the Y’s annual event.

More than 50 participants aging from six to 13 and their parents gathered at Staples on Sunday to participate in the Westport-Weston YMCA’s 7th Annual Strong Kids Triathlon.

For kids aged six to nine, the event consisted of a 75-meter swim (three laps), a one mile bike ride, and a half mile run.

The older competitors, aged 10-13, they had to swim 150 meters (six laps), bike for two miles, and complete a one mile run.

Though every kid was given a medal for participation and completion of the race,  the top three finishers of each gender in each age group received a trophy to recognize their accomplishment.

The top finisher in the ten to thirteen girls was Grace Gustinis, who finished with the best overall time of the day in eighteen minutes and thirty-three seconds.

The top finisher in the ten to thirteen boys age group was Lucas Amlicke, who finished with a time of 18 minutes and 47 seconds.  In the ages six to nine age group, Emma Mahon and Ben Stokes were the top finishers.

Mischel Nahon, father of top finisher Emma as well as two other participants, expressed a parents pride in seeing their kids complete this athletic feat.  “It’s very exciting and fun to see them growing from one race to another and seeing them improve,” said Nahon.

Though Staples students were too old to participate in the race, they were represented as volunteers through National Charity League (NCL) for girls and Service League of Boys (SLOBS).

These volunteers helped to motivate the participants as they ran or biked as well as handing out medals at the finish line and manning the popular snack-table.

Meg George, who directed the triathlon, believed the day went very well, specifically giving “a huge thank you going to Staples” for the volunteers that helped make the day run smoothly.

Whether it was through homemade personalized signs, running the last 100 meters together or just waiting for a sweaty hug at the finish line, the day was epitomized by the support offered by parents and the entire crowd.

“It wasn’t too competitive,” said George,“ All kids and parents came in with a good attitude ready to have fun and enjoy the day.”