USA Triathlon (USAT) and the Challenged Athletes Foundation (CAF) have partnered to offer a first-of-its-kind junior paratriathlon development program. The program will support up-and-coming paratriathletes aged 12-17 with grant funding, coaching guidance, apparel and other development resources.
“USA Triathlon is proud to team up with CAF to support athletes with the future potential to excel in international paratriathlon events and, ultimately, the 2024 or 2028 Paralympic Games,” said Amanda Duke Boulet, Paralympic Program Director at USA Triathlon.
“It can be difficult for young athletes to get started in our sport without the proper resources and guidance. This inaugural program will connect up to five individuals with expert coaches, offset their competition travel expenses and set them up for long-term success beyond the 2020 season.”
Travis Ricks, Associate Director of Programs and Athlete Relations at CAF, said “The Challenged Athletes Foundation is proud to partner with USA Triathlon to help develop the next generation of paratriathletes. Our combined expertise and history in growing the sport of paratriathlon will ensure that this new juniors’ program provides much-needed support for athletes to develop and succeed in the sport.”
The program, which runs for the duration of 2020, aims to identify talent, provide assistance and encourage passion for the sport of triathlon in aspiring junior paratriathletes. Accepted athletes will receive a CAF travel grant to be used for select triathlon races and training camps.
Athletes will receive support and advice from a USA Triathlon-certified paratriathlon coach. In addition, they will be recognized with dedicated athlete bios on usatriathlon.org and challengedathletes.org, and outfitted with USA Triathlon and CAF-branded equipment and apparel.
Applicants must commit to training primarily for triathlons during the 2020 season with the ability to participate in three events, including:
- The USA Triathlon/Challenged Athletes Foundation Youth Paratriathlon Camp from June 29-July 3 in Colorado Springs, Colorado;
- The USA Triathlon Youth & Junior Nationals from August 1-2 in West Chester, Ohio; and
- An optional event of the athlete’s choosing within the 2020 calendar year.
The application process is now open, and complete information can be found online. Interested athletes must submit their applications, along with a race resume, by March 1, 2020. Up to five athletes will be selected for the program at the discretion of the USA Triathlon High Performance team and the CAF Programs team.