Triathlete Sophie Lampe has won her first national event competing at the New Zealand Schools Triathlon Champs 2022.
She won the Under 13 girls event in a time of 25minutes, 46seconds, just over a minute ahead of the second placed competitor. It was held last month alongside the New Plymouth ITU Triathlon World Cup, at Ngamotu Beach, in Taranaki.
Sophie, 12, of Hinds School took the championship event all in her stride and was excited about the race.
Prior to the nationals she had placed second in the Under 14 category at the South Island Secondary School Triathlon in Oamaru. There she was mainly competing with athletes at least a year older.
Sophie is a Year 8 school leader who mainly trains herself as well as swimming in town once a week and she is no stranger to the winners podium despite only starting running competitively in late-2018.
She has long-term goals for her own running future. They are Olympic-sized but she is on track to succeed already competing in high level competition.
And she is learning how to improve her performance from every race she competes in and has made some great friends through the events.
She has also met former Olympian triathlete Andrea Hewitt, received racing tips from Olympic bronze medallist Hayden Wilde and inspiration from professional triathlete Hannah Wells.
Sophie has won many age-group cross country events, but also triathlons and multi-challenge events against adults.
In her first full-year competitively running she won school age events such as the Mid Canterbury Cross Country, Mid Canterbury Triathlon, Canterbury Zones Athletics 1000m, Mid Canterbury Athletics 1000m and was a member of the Canterbury Cross Country team competing at inter-regionals competition in Hanmer Springs.
She also won past events against adults; the Geraldine Multi-Challenge (a 5km race) and the Longbeach Challenge.
She has competed in the Lake Crichton series and most recently placed second female overall in the short course.
The Lampe family live rurally just out of Hinds, and Sophie does much of her training around the property from swimming in the irrigation pond (she has set out buoys to swim around) and either biking on gravel tracks or has to be driven to a tar-seal road for a road bike.
She has also been given help with transition tips by Kerry Clough (multi-sporter Matt Clough’s father) and regular bike servicing from sponsor Stoked Cycles, in Ashburton.
Sophie has kept training despite the disruption of covid and loves going to Peel Forest for a more exciting run.
In the coming months she is looking at doing some cross country events, competing in duathlons when able, as well as playing hockey.