Uckfield triathlete Jamie Bedwell is off to Portugal for ten days training next month in preparation for the season ahead.
Jamie, who has his sights set on competing in the Olympic Games in 2024, is about to begin his second year as an U23 competitor in the British series.
He began training as a triathlete when he was 16 and now aged 20 is a member of elite club Bodyworks.
He will be joining other squad members at a regional academy training camp in the Algarve, Portugal.
Jamie was involved in a serious car accident in 2016, and had health problems in 2017 caused by scar tissue but he has never given up his dream of competing for the British Triathlon team.
Uckfield-based TR Fastenings, global specialist in the engineering, manufacture and distribution of industrial fasteners is sponsoring Jamie again for the fourth year.
Their support helps Jamie with costs towards his training, competition expenses, kit expenses and equipment.
He also works part time with triathlon specialists The Tri Store in Eastbourne and is in his final year at the University of Brighton (Eastbourne campus) where he is studying podiatry.
In addition to competing at an elite level Jamie is using his platform as an athlete to do good, spreading the word about important causes, positive change, and taking the opportunity to help others.
For example, in September 2019, Jamie will be working with the United Nations on a special campaign aimed at raising awareness of the issue of plastics, used in the bike and triathlon industry, ending up in our oceans, and the need to find alternatives to reduce the industry’s impact on the environment.
Jamie said: “As a triathlete I train and compete in the sea all the time, so I see first-hand the damage that single-use plastics are doing to our beautiful waters.
“I am privileged to be in a position where I am becoming known in triathlon and local circles, which means I can help draw attention to these important issues and hopefully help in the search for a solution.”
Jamie’s 2019 season begins in April with a swim-free Duathlon, before the British Triathlon series kicks off in June with a key event at Blenheim Palace.
Jamie will compete throughout the season across the UK, with standout races in Cardiff, Llanelli, London and Eastbourne.
Jamie will be competing for prize funds and also looking to cement his position as an under 23 athlete on the pathway to Olympic selection for the 2024 games in Paris and the 2028 games in Los Angeles.
The first step will be to qualify for the European Cup, which will mean being within the top five of his field.
After this the goal will be the World Cup, the World Series, and hopefully on to the Olympic squad.
Jamie said: “It’s a really tough environment out there and there are only three places available on the Olympic squad, so it’s certainly a challenging journey ahead of me. However, I am very positive and determined to put my all into my training.
“For me, having faith and a right mind-set as well as the support of those around me is where my strength lies. I’m very grateful to the team at TR for continuing to sponsor me. They have stayed with me from the beginning, and throughout my accident and recovery, and I simply couldn’t do this without them.”
Abi Burnett, head of marketing at TR Fastenings said: “We have been on this journey with Jamie for four years and it’s been incredible to watch his progress.
“In spite of terrible setbacks and injury he has always stayed positive, and his determination to reach his ultimate goal is inspiring.
“We are passionate about supporting local businesses, and individuals, and we are so proud to have the TR logo on Jamie’s try suit for another year. We wish him all the very best for the season ahead.”
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