Ashton Eaton has apparently taken his specialty from a ten-event track challenge to a four-part endurance race.
The 29-year-old Olympic gold medallist who announced his retirement from the decathlon at the beginning of this year, was signed up for a swim, bike, run and kayak event which he took part in earlier this month. The Prineville Splash ‘N Dash multi-sport event took place in central Oregon and according to Oregon Live, Eaton had no idea he was partaking in the race until a mere days before go time.
His wife, Brianne, also a recently retired Olympic medallist (she specialized in the heptathlon), and some friends signed Eaton up in secret. When they let him in on it, they offered him a chance to decline but he decided to go for it. Though he’s made a name for himself as an Olympic athlete, he had to borrow most of his gear considering that swimming and cycling are far from his specialty. (Brianne loaned him a bike.)
The race consisted of 500m in the pool, a 1.5-mile kayak, a four-mile run and a 13-mile cycle. Despite not being an experienced swimmer or cyclist, Eaton finished in 1:49:05. He finished first in his age group and 17th overall.
The couple announcement their retirement from competitive track at the beginning of this year. Since then though, Brianne has made the marathon her next focus. (Hint: looking for a profile on Theisen-Eaton in our upcoming issue…)