Winner overcomes injuries to claim triathlon crown

by Vance Gutzman

The 35th edition of the Deep River Triathlon on Sunday saw Barry’s Bay native Sean Corrigan crossing the finish line in first place with a time of 1:33:18.5.

That may not have been a record-setting time (Len Gushe, for example, won last year’s triathlon with a time of 1:28:03.8) but it was still more than three minutes faster than second-place finisher Peter Konecny.

triathlon winner 9c

Plus, it marked the first time Corrigan has won the Deep River Triathlon, an event in which he first started competing way back in 1995.

It also marks the continuation of a hot streak this year for Corrigan, who is coming off first-place finishes in triathlons held in Barry’s Bay and Ottawa.

“I guess I just got motivated,” Corrigan told the NRT, while trying to cool down from his swim, bike and run.

Corrigan enters as many as five to six triathlons on a yearly basis, and the fact he’s able to do so is a testament to sheer grit and determination.

Because less than three years ago, Corrigan sustained serious injuries when a transport struck his bicycle on Whitewater Road.

Included in that list of injuries were a lot of leg fractures and a punctured lung.

“I couldn’t walk for three months,” he recalled.

“But it helped with my swimming because that was one of the few things I was able to do for a while.”

Corrigan credits his comeback and current success to a combination of “work and luck” and plans on competing well into the fall this year.

“There’s something being held pretty well every weekend until the water gets too cold,” he says.

A total of 46 individuals and 35 teams took part in this year’s triathlon.

Deep River’s recreation director, Christine Armstrong said this year’s event was “fantastic” and credits the hard work of volunteers and town staff for pulling it off without a hitch in the hot, muggy weather conditions.

“The swimming in particular went really smoothly,” Armstrong said, noting that one of the cyclists became a little disoriented on the triathlon route, but was quickly able to get back on the right track.

“It was a perfect day,” she said.