C3'S ANDREW YORKE SELECTED FOR THE RIO OLYMPIC TRIATHLON TEAM
By Barrie Shepley
It all stared 16 years ago, when a young teenage Andrew Yorke watched the Sydney Olympics with his family in Caledon East. On the second day of the Olympics, an un-known, Simon Whitfield won the Olympic Gold Medal and stunned the world with the first ever Olympic medal for the sport. Several months later, C3's head coach Barrie Shepley did a free motivational behind the scenes talk at the Bolton arena about the Olympic experience. As luck would have it, Andrew Yorke and his sister and father (Ward) Yorke would come to that talk. Andrew had been a bike rider, soccer player and was looking for a new way to express his talents. He soon joined the C3 Canadian Cross Training Club and became one of the hardest working juniors in the program. As a late developing swimmer, Andrew had to really work to develop his swim skills. He swam as often as he could at the Mayfield Pool and balanced triathlon, Humberview High School Track & Cross Country, academics and part-time jobs.
As he graduated from High School, rather than directly into McMaster University, he worked a semester at Royal Containers in Brampton while he continued to improve. Andrew represented Canada at the World Junior Championships and then continued his running and swimming at McMaster University with Paula Schnurr and Andrew Cole. Big brother-mentor Sean Bechtel played a very important role in Andrew's development. He had a big-strong, older mentor to push him in all workouts and Andrew became one of Canada's top under 23 year old athletes, racing at World Champs a number of times. Andrew was a big part of McMaster's resurgence in cross country running, along with C3 triathletes Connor Darlington, Taylor Reid, John Rasmussen and Lionel Sanders.
Andrew moved out of university and into full time triathlon racing with summers in Germany, Spain and other parts of Europe. He had a chance to race on the biggest stages and world championships and in 2012 was selected as the first alternate for the London Olympic Games. As Simon Whitfield's daily sparring partner leading up to London, Andrew got to see what SImon did every single day for 3 months. Andrew was in London and saw the entire race, the size of the media and got to understand everything he would need to know for Rio. In the last 4 years, Andrew was top Canadian at the 2014 Commonwealth Games. Andrew was the top Canadian at last year's Pan American Games in Toronto. Andrew was the 2015 National Champion and the 4th place in New Zealand. Andrew finished the two year Olympic qualifying block as the top Canadian and on June 29th, was officially selected with four others to represent Canada at the Rio Olympic Games. See link to the team announcement: http://www.triathloncanada.com/en/news/latest/?id=3884 and Barrie Shepley's note on the team: https://www.facebook.com/barrie.shepley/posts/1246646062025837?pnref=story
Andrew's journey to the Olympics could not have happened without the massive support of the C3 board, coaches, sponsors, team-mates, Triathlon Ontario, Triathlon Canada, RTC Guelph, McMaster University and of course Andrew's personal sacrifices to do the work. Andrew and Tyler Mislawchuck will be racing Aug 18th and the three women will be racing on Aug 20th). Barrie Shepley and Brenda Irving from CBC will be in Rio doing the live TV commentary. Before Rio however, Andrew will be racing this weekend in Stockholm Sweden and in two weeks July 16-17th in Hamburg Germany, before focusing exclusively on Rio Olympic Games.
Victoria was the second race of my three-race series in June. After a disappointing flat in Raleigh one week before, I was very fired up to get back out there and prove myself.
I hopped a flight straight from Raleigh and arrived in Victoria one week before the race. This was the first time I had tried racing on back-to-back weekends. It seemed to work well, thanks to a very helpful homestay.
In the week leading up to the race, I was able to learn a new skill. I learned how to drive a standard vehicle. It made for a very interesting week. But as I have learned over the year, part of being a professional triathlete is being able to go with the flow and get the job done no matter what happens. I was invited to sit on the pro panel and to be part of the kids’ run again with my good friends Trevor and Heather Wurtele.
On race day, I was ready to go, acclimatized to the time zone and area. The race was insanely early even for Ironman: a 6:00 am start. But luckily the time zone change was in my favour. After a 3 am wake-up and my morning routine, I was race ready. It looked like it was going to be a cool day, starting at 10°C and getting up to 14°C. I chose to put a plastic bag under my race suit to stay warm on the bike. The swim had been shorted to about 1500m. The swim went of as usual. I chose to start on the right side is the sallower water and jockeyed for position early on. By about 400m the race had strung out with a group of two-three people up a head and myself in a small three man group following. I exited the water about 1min down from the leader and was ready for some redemption on the bike after last weeks flat tire.
As I was taking my bike off the rack Trevor Wurtele arrived at his bike. I knew I had about 10 seconds on my main competition of the day. At the start of the bike there was a little jockeying as we settled into our own race paces. I quickly moved myself in the lead of the race by 10km. I then started to settle into a grove preparing myself for when Trevor would arrive. By 20km Trevor arrived as he went by I new that I had to stay with him if I wanted any chance of winning. For the next 40km not much changed. Trevor led and tried a few surges but he could not get away. I stayed in second responding to Trevor’s moves and Nathan Killam sat in third. At 60km I chose to take control of the race and put in my own attack. Trevor could not respond and gap started to form. The hunter soon became the hunted! At 70km I put in another big pushed up the largest hill on the course about 2km. I entered into T2 with in first place. I had never had this happen--it was very interesting to be following the lead car.
As I dismounted my bike, I slipped on my shoe and hit the deck. Luckily I was only going 10-5kph so I was able to bounce back quickly and continue the race unharmed. (The bike is fine too.)
I headed out onto the two loop run around the lake on the gravel trails with a 90 sec on second place. I pushed the first loop and as I ran through the woods all I could think was Trevor is out there don’t you dare slow down. By the half way mark I had extended my lead to 2min but then Trevor start to chew into that nice lead of mine. At the 19km I got a glimpse of how close Trevor really was at a short out and back section and that really did scare me. All I could think is you have come this far don’t you dare let it go, fight for it. In those last 2km I really had to dig deep. In the end that is really what makes a win worth it, having a serious competitor that pushes you to new levels and Trevor did that. I crossed the line in 1st place. It was such an amazing feeling with the crowds there watching.
I am heading back to Caledon the for the next two weeks to prepare for Mt. Tremblant 70.3.
My first 70.3 of the year was Eagleman 70.3, located in Cambridge, Maryland. The day provided for some hot and sunny weather and while i fell short of my goals, a 4th is my highest placing at a 70.3 event to-date, so it is encouraging to see some progress being made. You can read my race report here.
JOIN LIONEL SANDERS - ANDREW YORKE- TAYLOR REID - SEAN BECHTEL JUNE 22ND FOR THE ONE DAY CELEBRATION-FUND RAISER
Andrew would have never gotten to this level in his career, if it wasn't for the financial support that C3 and many great supporters have provided over his brilliant young career. For 21 years, C3 has been fund raising to help current and future stars. Lionel Sander's is now the top ranked long distance athlete in the world, but would not likely even be racing without the help of C3 parents, sponsors, and supporters. Currently Taylor Reid and Kristen Marchant are two of the next generation athletes who C3's support is making a huge difference. The team and coach Barrie are asking you to dig deep and help keep this amazing program going. We need your help in one of a number of ways.
SUPPER & MEET THE TOP PROS JUNE 22nd
This very likely will be the only day this year that all of the biggest names in the sport will be together in one building and property. The supper is from 6-8:30pm on Wed June 22nd at the Caledon Golf and Country Club. Many Olympians will be in the room that night. Women's soccer superstar Ashley Lawrence will be celebrating. Jason Wilson, Olympic bound triathlete will be at the supper. Olympic coaches and Paralympic athletes will be celebrating on June 22nd as well. Come celebrate with the top triathletes, soccer players, swimmers and more. Don't miss this amazing night. Bring some friends and meet, greet and hear their behind the scene stories.Register at: https://app.eventcaddy.com/events/c3-kinetico-golf-bike-ride-for-future-olympic-champions
RIDE WITH THE PROS IN THE MORNING JUNE 22ND
We are hoping for 50-75 bike loving age groupers to join Lionel, Andrew, Sean, Taylor, Kristen, Andrew Beardsall and the team. Starting at 8:30am from the Caledon Golf and Country Club, there will be 4 different distance rides from 25km on the flat rail trail (where a mt bike or cross bike will do) to 40k, 60k an 75km on the road bikes with the C3 team. When else can you ride with the top pros and get a chance to take pictures and talk to them in a low stress day.Register at: https://app.eventcaddy.com/events/c3-kinetico-golf-bike-ride-for-future-olympic-champions
by Taylor Reid
C3 James Dick Quarry is now officially OPEN!!
The quarry is open for swimming during the following hours
** Please note that you are only allowed to swim during official C3 swim times
Tue 6-7:30am (coached swim workout with Sean)
Wed 5-7pm (coached workout 5:30-6:30pm)
Thr 6-7:30am (coached swim workout with Sean)
Sat 7-10am (coached workout 7:30-8:30am)
Address for the quarry is
18075 Hurontario Road
1km south of Caledon Village on the east side
Look for the James Dick Concrete Sign from the road
The C3 James Dick Quarry is 100m down from the parking lot
Click here for swimming/membership pricing
On sale at the 2016 Caledon KOS Race
Limited quanties are avaialble and on sale for cash (preferred) at the C3 Caledon Kids of Steel Triathlon, May 29th, 2016
$5 from each purchase will be donated to the C3 high performance team