Beijing, China: On the 5th anniversary of Triathlon’s debut on the Olympic Games in Sydney, Australia, Sheila Taormina of the USA has announced that Saturday’s Beijing ITU Triathlon World Cup will be her last.
Taormina, 34 of Livonia, Michigan first entered Triathlon in 1999, one year before qualifying for the Sydney Olympic Games. In her 5 year career in Triathlon she has won Triathlon World Cup titles in Cancun, Nice and Madeira, as well as the ultimate World crown that she won at the 2004 ITU World Championships in Madeira.
Prior to competing in World Cup Triathlon, Taormina competed in the World University Swimming Championships in 1991 and 1995 and then qualified for the USA Olympic Team for the Atlanta Olympic Games – winning a gold medal in the 4 x 200 freestyle.
But true to style, Taormina is not going to slip into a quiet life. She has taken on the challenge of becoming the first person in history to compete in the Olympic Games in 3 different sports. She has been training for Modern Pentathlon since competing in the Athens Olympic Games and is on course for making the USA team for the Beijing Olympic Games.
The 200m freestyle swim and 3km run of Modern Pentathlon have been an easy part of her new sport, while horse jumping, fencing and shooting are a lot more of a challenge.
It will be sad to watch Sheila in her last Triathlon in Beijing after everything that she has added to the sport, but we’ll watch with great interest as she pursues her 4th Olympic Games in our sister multi-sport.