A Cornish student will be flying the flag for Great Britain in Mexico this September, after being called up to the Team GB Triathlon team.
Despite being the youngest athlete in the 20-24 age bracket for the competition, the 19-year-old Truro and Penwith Swimming Academy student Ben Kent is seeking a top 15 finish at the ITU World Triathlon Championships in Cozumel.
Ben’s triathlon career received a huge boost last year when he was selected to represent Team GB in the Under 20s category at the World Championships in Chicago. He then decided to challenge himself further by jumping up an age group.
“After Chicago I put my name forward for the Lisbon European Championships in the 20 to 24 age category, but I didn’t find out I had qualified until seven weeks before the event,” he explains.
“I did surprisingly well considering I had a rubbish swim, but I went for it on the bike and got a good rhythm going. I came 14 out of 25, but I was expecting to come dead last as I am only 19 and was the youngest competitor by a year and a half.”
Ben was also competing in the English championships where he finished sixth, therefore qualifying for the event at Cozumel, a small island off the Mexican coast.
He will also compete in the Aquathlon, a bike and swim race, after pre-qualifying thanks to the time he registered at the World Championships in Chicago last year in the under 20s category.
Ben is hoping for a good result and has stepped up his training so he is fully prepared to take on the world’s best triathletes.
“I’ve been swimming as part of the College Swimming Academy on Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays, and I link up with College Sports Technician Matt Pullen, because he used to be a triathlete and he helps get me where I need to be,” he explains.
The trip to Mexico, like the World Championships in Chicago, is self-funded, so Ben is working through the summer and also looking to find sponsors wanting local and international exposure.
“When I competed in Chicago, Sims Metal Management in Camborne and Bike Chain Ricci in Mount Ambrose were brilliant sponsors, and it would be great to be sponsored again.”
Ben has just completed his Sports Science course at Truro and Penwith College and will be attending Swansea University in September to continue his studies.
Potential sponsors can contact Ben by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Those interested in studying sports-related courses or joining one of Truro and Penwith College’s Academies should contact 01872 267000 or email@example.com.