Jessey The Elf gets goal with Guelph Lake Olympic triathlon win

GUELPH – Jessey The Elf of Waterloo had a single goal for Saturday’s Olympic triathlon, the opening event of the Subaru Triathlon Series’ Guelph Lake One meet – to win the race in and around the Guelph Lake Conservation Area.

“I think I’ve raced the Olympic here close to eight times and this is the first I’ve won it,” he said after winning in 2:00:02.2. “It’s kept me coming back for that win.”

In the end, Elf had little to worry about as he finished almost three minutes ahead of R.J. Ross of Port Elgin, the second-place finisher who finished in 2:02:56.7. Ross was almost three minutes ahead of Stratton Townley of Toronto, the third-place finisher in 2:05:48.7.

“It’s not just about the win as it’s hard to control what your competitors do on the day,” Elf said. “I’m very pleased with how I performed today. Two hours and two seconds, it was a little hard in the wind.”

Top female finisher was Angela Quick of Kitchener who was 19th overall in 2:19:33.9. She was more than four minutes ahead of Izaura Araujo of Toronto, the second female finisher 33rd overall in 2:23:39.9.

Wind hampered the competitors more than the relatively cool temperatures.

“It was a tough, tough swim,” said Elf who posted the fastest swim time. “It was a little windy on the bike, but I still had some fun with it and I’m very pleased with my run. I think I ran 35 minutes off the bike and I’ve never come close to that before.”

Elf did have the fastest run time of 35:57.

Ecstatic about his win, Elf also took the win as encouragement for some upcoming races.

“I’m getting into some draft-legal racing and that’s all about having a fast start in the swim, making those lead packs, having a really good bike and then especially running fast off the bike,” Elf said. “To take three or four minutes off my best time here on the run alone, I’m very pleased with it.”

That there wasn’t anyone real close to him didn’t really bother Elf.

“I wasn’t focused on my competitors,” he said. “It was about me go against the clock. I wanted to push down the watts on the bike and have a really, steady and fast run off of it.”

A former student, varsity swimmer and lifeguard at the University of Guelph, Elf is now a full-time lifeguard at the YMCA in Waterdown where he also teaches aquafit. He’s also a pro triathlete, the only one in Saturday’s race.

Elf never completed his studies at the U of G, but is considering changing that.

“I want to go back and I want to finish it and get the degree,” he said. “It’s unfinished business.”

Brent Button of Nipigan won the Olympic swim/bike in 1:27:57.1 while Noel Guy of Bradford won the Olympic duathlon in 1:56:20.7. Eamon Hararty of Guelph took the Try-a-Tri in 36:08.9 and The Three Tri’d Raven team won the Olympic relay in 2:09:37.8.

Elf is one of several competitors who are also to race in Sunday’s sprint triathlon at Guelph Lake.

“It’s a little hard racing back-to-back,” he said. “A lot of draft-legal races nowadays you have a preliminary heat to get into the final the next day. I’ve trained myself to recover fast for the next day.

“It’s all about hydrating, eating properly and sleeping properly.”


  • Guelph Sports Journal