Study advisor wins Dutch winter triathlon championship

Last weekend, he became the Dutch winter triathlon champion. Study advisor Gerard Terwisscha van Scheltinga is still overwhelmed.

His running and cycling times were good, but the skating portion had gone very badly. ‘I was not expecting to win any prizes’, says Terwisscha van Scheltinga, a study advisor at the medical faculty.

After the competition, he really just wanted to go straight home. ‘I was walking by the match committee and then it turned out that I was the Dutch champion in the over-55 category’, he laughs.


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Gerard Terwisscha van Scheltinga

His winning performance took place on Saturday during the winter triathlon – 10 km of running, 46 km of cycling, and 20 km of skating – in and around sports centre Kardinge. Terwisscha van Scheltinga completed the track in 2 hours and 49 minutes.

The study advisor usually does regular triathlons, which involve 3.8 km of swimming, 180 km of cycling, and 42.2 km of running. ‘I have been participating in triathlons, but I was never the Dutch champion.’

The win is a nice ‘bonus’ in the lead up to the summer season, says Terwisscha Van Scheltinga. ‘During the winter months, I train about eight to ten hours a week. But that will be 15 to 20 hours a week for the foreseeable future.’


Is it possible to combine something like this with a steady job? ‘Absolutely’, says the study advisor. ‘I live in Haren and often bike and or walk to the UMCG. Sometimes I take a detour. I can shower at the hospital. I often run home at the end of the day, and then back to the UMCG the next day. I can leave my clothes there, no problem. Combining sports with work or other obligations is much easier than people think.’

His main goal this year is the Frysman, a regular triathlon in Gaasterland in Friesland on 9 July. There, Terwisscha van Scheltinga will defend the title of ‘the sword of Grutte Pier’, a challenge cup. Age is not a factor in that league.