By Jemima Miller
More than 4000 office workers competed in the Nissan Corporate Triathlon on April 25 at Mrs Macquarie’s Chair. In celebrating the event’s 25th anniversary, it wasn’t just the fact that any desk-strapped office worker who fancied themselves as amateur athletes could compete. There was more to it than that.
“It’s the competition between friends and colleagues that makes it such a fantastic event. It’s great to be in an active environment outside of the office,” said Janssen competitor Mat Klintfalt.
“Such a great atmosphere, it’s a really friendly competition. It’s also nice to socialise with colleagues outside a work situation. No matter what your position in the company, when you are standing side by side in your togs everyone is equal. Unless of course, you are genetically blessed and have the body of an athletic god,” said Foxtel participant Daniella Toha.
Pierre Meneaud, Marketing & Communications Manager for organising company Supersprint, said, “The event is primarily targeted at promoting camaraderie, participation and fostering the development of important corporate values such as team work, spirit, determination and a can-do attitude.”
Although some people may have looked fiercely competitive with their fancy bikes and specialised triathlon clothing, they were often the ones struggling at the back of the pack while others running in board shorts with borrowed hybrid bikes were leading the way.“Someone did the run leg in bare feet, and some people did the entire course in nothing but Speedos. Very brave, my swim cap goes off to them,” Daniella said.
Competitors also took their swimming caps off to the organisational aspect of the event.
“Take thousands of competitors, give them three activities to do in a relatively small amount of space and you have a recipe for disaster, a real logistical nightmare. The organisers did an amazing job and the event ran smoothly,” Daniella said.
“The event was well organised and races ran to schedule. Removing the bike from the compound was a bit of a hassle, but I understand that there are limited options,” Matt Klinfalt said.
Safety was a key priority for participants so there were more than 152 event staff and volunteers supporting competitors.
Overall there was only a small number of minor accidents. “A few people did come off while doing the bike leg but were seen to immediately by ambulances and marshals,” Mr Meneaud said.
As a race day tradition, the unofficial fourth and final leg was a visit to the pub for bacon and egg rolls and a cheeky morning beer.