Emma Raymen is the Ladies Captain at Hoddesdon Triathlon Club and made her debut for the Age-Group Team in 2019. She was due to race a number of times for the team in 2020, however, with race postponements and travel restrictions, is set to pull on the GB trisuit again in 2022.
The Great Britain Age-Group Team provides opportunities for British Triathlon members to represent the country on the international stage in a variety of multisport disciplines with championships in various distances of triathlon, aquathlon, duathlon and aquabike on offer.
“In 2019 I represented Great Britain at Targu Mures European Championships at aquathlon with my husband, that was my first time racing for the team,” Raymen said.
“We took our youngest child, who was two at the time, with us because my husband was racing on the same day which was brilliant but was a tag team. I think there was about an hour in-between him racing and me racing as well to pass Jack [her son] over.”
Raymen’s first triathlon was the sprint distance at the London 2013 having not come from a swim, bike, run background other than cross country at school. She was inspired by her husband who raced in London when she was pregnant with their first child.
In 2017, when pregnant with their second child, she took 6 months out of sport before getting back involved in 2018 with aquathlon. Explaining why she chose aquathlon, Raymen said: “I didn’t actually have a huge amount of bike experience and my best discipline was the run out of all of them, so thought I’d give aquathlons a go.”
Age-Group Team racing once again came about having seen her husband qualify in 2018 and having spent time with members of their club who had also represented the team.
In 2018 Raymen used one of her aquathlon races to get a time to submit for Age-Group qualification and qualified for the European Championships in Targu Mures, Romania in 2019.
“The atmosphere out there was phenomenal,” she added. “The buzz of it all was brilliant. Seeing people winning their age group and getting podium spots just drove me forward to doing it again.
“Nations all come together and the Great Britain team as well, it’s so inspiring to listen to their stories. Mums who are balancing kids and training and listening to their stories inspired me to give it a go.”
In 2019, Raymen once again qualified for the team and was set to race in 2020 at world and European middle distance aquabike, European middle distance duathlon and world and European aquathlon championships.
Following their postponement, Raymen has her eyes set on competing in European Championships she’d previously qualified for when they are rescheduled in 2022.
As Ladies Captain at Hoddesdon Triathlon Club, she is also very keen to encourage more women to take part in swim, bike, run and to explore giving Age-Group Team racing a go.
“A lot of them haven’t done tri before so its about encouraging them to come to the weekly sessions and just try,” she commented. “Taking part is more important and having a good time and enjoying it.
“We’ve got some who are members of the Age-Group Team and some men as well who are Age-Groupers. A good ten or eleven who are Age-Group members as well.”
Qualifiers to be part of the Great Britain Age-Group Team are taking place throughout this year. To find out more about representing the Age-Group Team, when qualifiers are and other qualifying criteria, follow the link below to find out more and register for a qualifier.