Great Britain triathlete Alex Yee is the latest guest to join us on the SportsAid Vault Podcast as he shares stories and insights from his career so far! The podcast, produced by Hogarth Worldwide and Gramercy Park Studios, is primarily targeted at SportsAid athletes, as well as their parents and guardians, but is also a highly informative and entertaining listen for all of the charity’s commercial partners, supporters and fundraisers, in addition to sports fans in general.
Alex, who was supported by the Dave Aitchison Fund through SportsAid in 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016, already has multiple European and international medals to his name at senior level. He enjoyed an illustrious career in the junior ranks – winning silver at the Holten ETU Triathlon Junior European Cup in 2015 followed by consecutive golds at the ITU Duathlon World Championships in Aviles and Soria – in 2016 and 2017 respectively.
Alex’s early success led to him being presented with SportsAid’s One-to-Watch Award as an 18-year-old. He has also excelled on the track and in cross country running too – posting quicker 5,000m times than Mo Farah did as a junior. He was crowned senior British 10,000m champion back in 2018 and finished 14th at the European Athletics Championships in Berlin that summer.
Back on the triathlon front, having stepped up to Under-23s and senior level, Alex won bronze at the Weihai ITU Triathlon World Cup in China in September 2018 before claiming gold at the Cape Town Discovery Triathlon World Cup, followed by silver on his World Triathlon Series debut in Abu Dhabi, in early 2019. He also enjoyed repeated success in Great Britain’s mixed relay teams that year.
This saw him take home gold from the Accenture World Triathlon Mixed Relay Series in Nottingham, as well as silver from the ITU World Triathlon Mixed Relay Series in Tokyo and the ITU World Triathlon Grand Final in Lausanne. He is a member of the UK Sport World Class Lottery Funded triathlon squad and recently finished fourth in the opening round of the World Triathlon Series in Yokohama.
Each episode of the SportsAid Vault contains a themed discussion based around the guest’s own unique experiences. We talk to Alex about the value of ‘support networks’ as he highlights the ‘bigger machine’ behind his achievements. He also reflects on the support he received following the horrific mid-race crash he suffered at the Cagliari ITU Triathlon World Cup event in 2017.
We find out more about Alex’s upbringing, the influence of his parents and how his first steps in triathlon preceded track and field. He looks back at his school days and how he played several other sports, including cricket and badminton, as he put the emphasis on enjoyment. He also speaks about success at junior level, not obsessing over times and records, and how ‘one result doesn’t define you.’
Alex, now 23, talks through the step up to senior level, competing against more experienced athletes and managing external expectations for both triathlon and track and field. He underlines the importance of ‘being in the moment’, why he analyses performances post-race and how process goals help him to deliver his best. He also reveals why he made the move to Newark during lockdown.
Co-hosted by Tom Gayle, BBC sports presenter, commentator and reporter, and Dominic Mensah, current Great Britain tumbling sensation, the podcast was launched back in March and has so far welcomed Viddal Riley, a professional cruiserweight boxer signed to Mayweather Promotions, Arsenal and England footballer Lotte Wubben-Moy, and para swimmer Louise Fiddes as guests.
• Being inspired by his dad and attending the opening Crystal Palace junior triathlon session
• Going to Kent AC for the first time and training at the Ladywell track just a mile from home
• Balancing triathlon and running commitments alongside school and academic aspirations
• Not falling into one sport too early, avoiding risk of burnout and enjoying being with friends
• ‘One result doesn’t define you’ and how junior accolades stimulated hunger for senior level
• Managing focus and external expectations with pull from both triathlon and track and field
• Suffering horrific mid-race crash on his bike and missing A-Levels recovering in hospital
• Rehabilitation following injuries and winning BUCS cross country title within eight months
• Growth in popularity of triathlon and excitement at the sport hitting mainstream media
• Jumping up to senior level, earning his position and competing against experienced athletes
• Joining the World Class Performance Programme and the ‘bigger machine’ surrounding him
• Training in Leeds before relocating to Newark having always been a ‘city boy’
• Creating the right mindset and psychological cues keeping him on track during a race
• Post-race analysis, talking through competitions and how it helps to shape training
• Developing as an athlete and focusing on process goals to ensure he delivers his best
• Reflecting on importance of SportsAid support and impact it made during his development
• Hobbies outside of sport including collecting Pokemon cards and watching anime