After a two-year hiatus, Taga Kids triumphantly returned last Saturday with close to 40 participants taking part in the event organized by the Triathlon Association of the CNMI at the Paupau Beach complex.
Instead of accompanying the Tagaman, the triathlon for children this time came after the tryouts for the CNMI National Triathlon Team for next year’s 2022 Northern Marianas Pacific Mini Games.
Two divisions were contested last Saturday with Scarlett Burrell and Gabriel Walsh topping the 5-8 years old division and Vivian Chung and Philip James Seman winning the 9-12 age group.
Burrell tackled the 50m swim in the waters off Paupau Beach and the 1-loop bike and the 1-loop run around the complex in 6:34 to win the girls division. Leilani Ruszala and Lucy Thomsen finished second and third with times of 6:57 and 7:05, respectively.
Walsh, meanwhile, topped the boys category after negotiating the course in 7:36. He was followed by Beau Bauer (7:57) and Vince Seman Jr. (8:28).
In the girls 9-12, Vivian Chung beat Catalina Frink, 14:54-19:19, to take the tiara. Seman, for his part, ruled the boys 9-12 after submitting a time of 15:17 to narrowly beat out Keoni Ruszala, who came in at 15:53. Third place went to Marco Paulo Castro at 23:06.
Instead of the cut-throat competition usually seen in triathlons, the atmosphere during Saturday’s Taga Kids was more of a festive mood with parents and family members cheering on their children with some of even “escorting” them throughout the bike and run portions of the course.
Results of the mixed relay will be published in tomorrow’s issue of Saipan Tribune.
TRAC president Manny Sitchon earlier said that he’s glad that the Taga Kids was again back in their sports calendar after it was postponed in 2019 due to logistical reasons and was cancelled altogether in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Taga Kids Triathlon was sponsored by Bridge Capital LLC and Brabu Pharmacy & Wellness Center.