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Kerry Smith Athlete Ambassador

by Alexandra Parren

triathlon triathlete runner finish line

Kerry has always been a horse rider, but after a spate of bad luck and horses getting injured, she discovered the world of triathlon.

Have you always been into sport?

My main sport has always been horse riding. I show-jumped for many years, qualifying and competing at various championships. I never really saw myself as a swimmer, runner or cyclist but now I'm hooked.

What made you decide to enter the world of triathlon?

My main horse retired and I had a run of bad luck with young horses getting injured. I got fed up with waiting on the sidelines so decided to try another sport (or three).

Being a rider with only one or two horses is fantastic when things go to plan but unfortunately they didn’t. My amazing show jumper that had a heart of gold had to retire and within the space of two weeks my promising young horse was at Newmarket having surgery to repair her torn tendon sheath, plans halted!

Horse riding is like no other sport as you cannot do it on your own. I get a real buzz from competing and was missing it so I learnt to swim, bought a bike, started running and entered my first triathlon.  

What’s been your favourite race to date and why?

Definitely Cardiff Triathlon.

And your proudest achievement?

Qualifying for the European Championships in my first year of stepping up to standard distance.

Have you ever had any racing disasters/your toughest race yet?

My first triathlon; attempting a pool-based triathlon in a swimsuit, shorts and t-shirt. I realised while stood poolside I had never run in my swimming costume and looked around at other ladies with sports bras on underneath, something I had failed to do. Thankfully it was a super sprint so I didn't have far to go with little support!

How do you overcome setbacks?

Always try to remember how far you've come. Goalposts can be moved and there are challenges to be found so don't stand still waiting for something to happen.

What is the best bit of advice you wish someone had told you before you started competing?

Practise drinking water on the bike before actually entering the competition. I hadn't tried drinking while cycling, I would usually have a sip at a rest stop. So, at my first triathlon I reached down and grabbed my water bottle then realised I couldn't put it back without wobbling all over the road. Yes I really was a true novice!

What are your goals for 2019?

My A race will be the European Championships in May, I'm training hard all winter as it will only be my second year at this distance.

What do you like about Sundried and what’s your favourite bit of our kit?

You spend hours training so finding clothes that are stylish and comfortable is a must, Sundried does just that. Gym vests are my favourite as they are so versatile and can be used for most sports, layered under a hoodie or on their own.

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