Claire Walton is just arriving in Kailua-Kona for a third consecutive year for the prestigious Ironman World Championship. The 35-year-old English and Literature teacher at an international school in Malaysia will be racing in PURPOSE at the most exciting endurance race this weekend!
“Kona, for me, is a few days away from normality, where I can revel in the beauty of the island, where I can listen and watch those around me knowing they too have gotten up at 5am daily, regardless of exhaustion, that they too have pounded the streets relentlessly, have swam until their arms are dropping off. Triathlon should not be about the individual, but the collective shared experiences,” she said.
“I race to feel the energy and to push, to smile, to know I am trying my hardest.”
Claire got to know of PURPOSE when she won a trisuit as a prize at a race. “I immediately loved the colours, the style, and the obvious time and thought that had gone into designing and crafting the clothing.
“After trying the suit in a race, it ticked many boxes: comfort, lack of chafing, easy to move the zipper, the right thickness for hotter climates – these may sound like small things, but when you are pushing to your limits, these are necessary. As the company has grown, I follow with a smile. The founder is a genuine, down-to-earth man with a passion for what he does. I hope to see them flourish further.”
Sports have always been in Claire’s blood. As a child, she loved anything that allowed her to move, to sweat, to compete. She played netball competitively and would spend hours with her brother and father on a field playing rounders, cricket and badminton. At school, she would be kicking a football at lunch break and she held records for the 800m, 1500m and triple jump.
“My inspiration will always be my father – although his humility won’t allow him to accept that without protest. My father and I are very similar, but the one trait that stands out is we ‘just get on with it’: it is stubbornness inextricably bound with determination.
“He encouraged me to run and to race. He taught me to play squash. He decided we needed to learn to swim so we could complete a triathlon. Without sport, I would not cope in the chaos and business of modern life, so in more ways that one I owe my life to my dad.”
Without ever doing a triathlon in her life, Claire went straight into Ironman Austria in 2008 – yes, the full 140.6 miles. Her passion for sports and competition is incredible. Other key races for her include an age group win in the Powerman Zofingen World Championships Duathlon 2013 and winning the Tahoe Rim to Rim 100-mile.
We wish you all the best for Kona, Claire! Rooting for you from Asia!!