One of the UAE’s biggest and most popular mass participation sporting events, TriYAS attracts 1,500+ athletes from around the region and beyond who push themselves to the limit in the swimming, cycling and running challenge.
This year, TriYAS by Daman’s ActiveLife, is open to even more members of the community with a series of new, shorter courses aimed at first-timers, younger athletes as well as short-distance speedsters.
The Super Sports Triathlon Championship – which is part of a four-race series – will offer three categories: T1, which involves a 100-metre swim, 3-kilometre bike course and a 1-kilometre run; T2 includes a 200-metre swim, 6-kilometre cycle plus a 2-kilometre run; T3 involving a 300-metre swim, 9-kilometre bike race and a 3-kilometre run.
TriYAS will also be the finale of the Super Sports Triathlon Championship season, hosting the showpiece with the top 20 males and top 10 females.
Al Tareq Al Ameri, CEO of Yas Marina Circuit, said: “TriYAS is also a community event that brings people of all ages, fitness levels and nationalities together with the goal of improving their overall health and, importantly, to have fun. This year, with the inclusion of Super Sports Triathlon Championship, we have added more distances to make participating even more accessible.
“The numbers of youngsters taking part along with first-timers and amateur athletes has grown each year. Our ultimate aim is to help members of the community to get into the best shape possible and to promote the importance of leading an active and healthy lifestyle.
Daman’s ActiveLife is National Health Insurance Company – Daman’s health and fitness initiative that aims to create healthier communities across the UAE.
Dr. Michael Bitzer, CEO of Daman, added: “The TriYAS by Daman’s ActiveLife is a hugely popular sporting event that motivates our ever-growing community to incorporate health and fitness into their daily lives. It is one of the key events in the ActiveLife calendar for its important role in supporting our aim to create healthier communities across the UAE.
“We are delighted to see this exciting community fitness activity grow over the past years to include people from every walk of life, age and fitness level. With new and refined categories in every edition; we are sure the event will continue to attract more people each year.”
Experienced adult competitors can choose from two distances: the TriYAS Olympic category, which covers a 1,500-metre swim, 38-kilometre cycle and 10-kilometre run, and the shorter Sprint category, involving a 750-metre swim, 22-kilometre bike course and 5.5 kilometre run.
There is also a dedicated children’s race. The KidsTRI is aimed at youngsters aged between (9-16 years) who can test themselves over a 100 metre swim, 6 kilometre cycle and a 1.5 kilometre run.
Adding a level of peak performance there will again be ProFIELD made up of local professionals as well as a selection of internationals. Last year’s TriYAS winner Patrick Lange went on to win the Iron Man World Championship so the quality of the field that is attracted to TriYAS is testimony to the unique experience it provides athletes of all abilities.
Until December 31, early bird registration prices for UAE residents will be available with discounts of up to 20 per cent on standard rates.
With limited spaces available, organisers are urging competitors to register for next year’s TriYas soon or risk missing out on the fun.
To register for TriYas, please visit: http://www.yasmarinacircuit.com.
Next year’s ITU World Triathlon Abu Dhabi will return to Yas Island on March 2 and 3 next year as the UAE capital once again opens the Word Triathlon Series calendar.
Yas Island made its first appearance this year and will once again host the world’s best triathletes in 2018. A mixture of elite, amateur (age-grouper) and junior triathletes will compete, taking in some of the most spectacular landmarks in the UAE.
The elite race will see 120 of the world’s best triathletes dive into a 750 swim in Yas Marina, before taking on a fast and furious 20km bike and 5km run, contained within the chicanes of Yas Marina Circuit.
Abu Dhabi has become the leading regional hub for triathlon, with over 4,000 triathletes expected to take to take part in the 2018 event.
“The ITU World Triathlon Abu Dhabi is one of the most entertaining on the global triathlon calendar. The location, atmosphere and the enthusiasm from all involved makes for a truly special event,” said race director, Gary Marescia.
Age group participants will be able to choose from three course types, all ranging in distance: Sprint: 750m swim, 20km bike, 5km run; Olympic: 1,500m swim, 40km bike, 10km run and Middle: 1,900m swim, 90km bike, 21km run.
The 2018 event will also see the return of the Junior Triathlon – a fun event aimed at encouraging youngsters to get active – which hosts categories for children aged five-15.
Online registrations are now open via the race website, AbuDhabi.Triathlon.org/Enter.
Prices start from just Dh450 for adults and Dh60 for children.
When 82-year old Madonna Buder, member of non-canonical Sisters for Christian Community, found her calling in running triathlons, little did everyone know that her frail body contained an iron will that not only got her through the gruelling course of the Canadian Iron Man, but got her numerous records and honours under her belt.
She served as a major catalyst for opening up the category for 80+ in the Canadian Iron Man and currently holds the world record for being the oldest person to run the Iron Man triathlon.
To date, Sister Madonna has competed in 37 marathons and 377 triathlons, including 45 ‘Ironman’ triathlons and attributes her fit physique to functional training and a clean diet.
“I can’t say I have anything special about my diet or training. I take a lot of herbal stuff and make sure I eat well. As for my training, I do what is called functional training, like there has got to be a reason for me to go out and run. So, I run to the mass if the weather and time permits me and I always manage to squeeze in some exercises during the day whether it is swimming, running, or biking.”
“Sometimes because of the weather I am stuck with indoor machines which I absolute deplore, I love the outdoors and sitting on those machines just makes me feel like I am a lab rat or a rodent on a wheel.”
Having grown up with a penchant for equestrian sports and now spends her old age taking care of her bike.
The 87-year old was initially afraid of sparking scandal, as a marathoning nun was still an oddity that the world had yet to get used to.
Even Sister Madonna contemplated the appropriateness of her choice to enter sports, and found solace in her faith that laid all her doubts to rest.
She said: “I had to really fight with myself whether this is really something that was right or not. I ended up going to retreat and I perched myself at a mountaintop, and I talked to god about the situation and the answer was that when someone has a gift and they realize they have it, they are obligated to use that gift for God’s greater honour and glory.”
Her little epiphany has given her the strength and courage to continue her journey and with her regular appearances in each event she was no longer the oddball that everyone had thought her to be at first.
Following the Canadian Iron Man She was lovingly dubbed as the ‘Iron Nun’, even though Sister Madonna described the nickname as a ‘crazy joke’, but the moniker has stuck with her since it was coined and has to lead to some amusing encounters for her.
“I would often go through the metal detectors at the airport and the security would often jokingly ask if I have any metal on me or not, and I would just tell them my whole body is full of scrap metal,” she recounted with a chuckle.
Sister Madonna also runs from her church to the local jail, a practise she started in 1982 and continues depending on how favourable the weather is.
At the end of each run, she visits and interacts with the inmates and described her time there as a truly ‘humbling experience’.
“I have met many people and I remember talking to a man who thought he didn’t belong there and perhaps he didn’t, but once I left I felt really humbled, because I thought to myself that if it was god’s will I could have been in that prison. I mean, I am not a perfect person and you never know what can happen. But whenever I am there I just feel comfortable and I really like it when the inmates share their stories with me,” she said.
Her autobiography titled ‘The Grace to Race: The Wisdom and Inspiration of the 80-Year-Old World Champion Triathlete Known as the Iron Nun’ was published in 2010 through which she aims to motivate others to achieve their goals in life.
Sister Madonna Buder is all set to bring her message of positivity to the UAE at the 4th International Conference for Women in Sports (ICSW) in Abu Dhabi on November 6 and 7.