Winter Sports Company course director, Steve La Borde, competed in the Triathlon World Championships – just 18-months after taking up the sport.
Steve is the founder of Winter Sports Company, and he can usually be found powder-hunting across Canada and Europe, but, after winning a spot on Team GB, he spent the weekend competing alongside the best triathletes in world.
Steve got his first taste of victory in July when he bagged first place in his age category at the Ripon Sprint Triathlon.
‘Lifting that trophy in Ripon was an incredible feeling. Then, when I found out I’d made the national team it was a dream come true’
Steve took on the world’s top veteran athletes in the age 60-64 sprint triathlon on Sunday 17 September. Over a rigorous 750m swim in the choppy open water of Rotterdam harbour, a 20km bike ride and 5km run, he successfully completed the course in a respectable 28th place with a time of 1 hour 25 minutes. There were over 80 competitors, so to finish in the top third is an incredible effort – especially being so new to the sport!
It’s an incredible achievement for an amateur athlete, Steve has always enjoyed keeping fit during the off-season, but only competed in his first sprint triathlon in May 2016 when he took part in the Wadebridge Sprint triathlon, coming 138th overall, in 1hr 40mins.
‘I rented a bike, and thought I’d see how I did. It wasn’t a great time, but as I crossed the finish line I knew I could do better’
Next, the ambitious sportsman took part in the notorious Helvellyn triathlon. Steve has never been afraid of a challenge and whilst it seemed bonkers to the rest of the office, to him it was natural for his 2nd triathlon to be one of the world’s toughest!
With his sights set on the World Championships, Steve continued training, spending the 2017 season on the slopes in the daytime and working in the gym after the lifts closed. When he returned to the UK he ramped up the training.
‘I bought a wetsuit and bike and trained for the open water swim in the sea. Cycling up the Cornish Hills really built my stamina up, and despite being a runner my whole life, the bike is now my best section’
After competing in the Redcar sprint triathlon – a championship qualifying round – in August, he got the stunning news. Steve had qualified after finishing in 1hour 14mins, shaving an incredible 26mins off his first attempt.
The Triathlon Store in Hayle is one of Steve’s proud sponsors, and is also providing a top of the range, custom, hand built Scott Foil bike with the latest lightweight 630g Zipp wheels. He’s also working with experienced swimming coach Lee Stanbury from the Cornish Swimming Academy in Newquay.
As we begin ramping up for the winter season, we hope the entire Winter Sports family can join us in wishing Steve a huge congratulations on this amazing achievement.
‘I really enjoyed myself, competing in a Team GB suit has been an incredible experience, I’m definitely going to keep training for next year – but I also can’t wait to get back on my skis!’
– Steve La Borde