Champs smash TRYathlon

MORE than 800 junior champions ran, swam and rode their little hearts out at Queen Elizabeth Oval as part of the Sanitarium Weet-Bix Kids TRYathlon. 

Event organiser Daniel Derrick said the event was about giving children aged seven to 15 self-confidence. 

"It is also about showing young people that being active doesn't have to be painful, boring or competitive - it can be fun," he said. 

"The event is not about getting the fastest time or winning the race.

"Every kid gets a gold medal for participating."

Mr Derrick said children travelled from as far as New South Wales to participate in the event. 

"People drive for hours to be part of the event," he said. 

"Last year we had 700 kids participate, this year there were 800. 

"Next year we're hoping to crack the 1000 mark."

Parent Michelle Robinson, who had two children participating, said it was a great way to get children involved in exercise, without a heavy focus on winning. 

"What I like about the event is that there is not too much attention focused on being the best of the group, instead the idea is to do your best and have a go at it," she said. 

"I think that gives the kids a sense of achievement." 

Another Bendigo parent Susan White said her children looked forward to the event every year.

"My daughter, 10, has been involved in this (TRYalthon) since the first one, three years ago," she said. 

"She couldn't get any sleep last night because she was so excited."

Children swim, ride and run

Lauren White said she waited all year to participate. 

"It is a great day," she said. 

City of Greater Bendigo mayor Barry Lyons presented each of the 800 children with a medal. 

Mr Derrick said the event went "fantastically" and all the children involved passed the finish line with enthusiasm. 

"It was great to see the kids bursting with pride as they cross the finish line," he said. 

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