Hechter among top young triathletes

Enumclaw’s Jacob Hechter competed in the Seattle RainMan 2011 Triathlon March 20 at Green Lake, finishing in a time of 1 hour, 28 minutes and 37 seconds.

The 13-year-old was the third youngest among 281 competitors, which included some of the region’s best multi-sport athletes. Despite this being his first triathlon, Hechter took second place in the 19-and-younger age category, besting a large number of much older competitors. He placed 53rd overall in the event which he had to swim 1,000 yards, bike 7.5 miles and run 3 miles.

From the starting field, 266 competitors finished the grueling event and the average time of finish was 1:48.14.

Hechter said he was inspired to take up triathlon training after competing in the Hawaiian Big Island Lavaman duathlon in 2009 which combines swimming and running.

Most of his training for this triathlon was accomplished as part of Enumclaw’s Rainier Foothills Swim Team, which has evolved under the leadership of coach Keith VanHoof, who has worked to bring new training methods and techniques to the team, and has expanded the team’s “dry-land” training methods which adds non-swimming workouts to the team’s pool-time training regimen.

Hechter plans to compete in another triathlon this summer.

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