USMES Boulder, CO – Mar 7, 2019 – After a remarkable rookie season, USMES triathlete and Army Captain Kelly Elmlinger has been named Paratriathlon Development Athlete of the Year by USA Triathlon. “I have a very long and complicated medical history and went five years without the ability to run. It was only three weeks after getting my first multi-purpose run/walk leg when I entered a triathlon as an amputee,” said Elmlinger. “For so many years, I wanted the opportunity to compete in triathlons and after getting that leg, I didn’t want to waste any more time being on the sidelines.” Elmlinger’s first win of the season came in her second triathlon since becoming an amputee — the Paratriathlon National Championships in Pleasant Prairie, Wisconsin. She went on to place fifth at the ITU Paratriathlon World Championships, then ended her season with an ITU Paratriathlon World Cup gold medal in Sarasota-Bradenton, Florida.
“Kelly’s drive and passion for sport has been evident over the past year. She has made an immediate impact on the competitive paratriathlon scene, both in the U.S. and internationally,” said Amanda Duke Boulet, Paralympic Program Director at USA Triathlon. “From winning a national title in her second paratriathlon since becoming an amputee, to earning a World Cup gold medal and finishing top-five at Worlds, Kelly continues to push her limits and demonstrate her competitive potential for the years ahead.”
“All of us at USMES recognize and honor Kelly’s achievements,” said Marcus Farris, Triathlon Team Coordinator for US Military Endurance Sports (USMES). “Like many of our members, Kelly’s success is based on a strong work ethic and the ‘jack of all trades’ attitude she developed during her military career. Kelly’s desire to immediately get back in the game embodies the goal of our organization: to help active and Veteran members of the US Armed Forces be ‘fit for duty and fit for life.’”
In 2019, the Army Captain, mom and surgical nurse looks forward to competing in her second triathlon season. “During my military career, I’ve had a passion for learning the entire processes. For me, triathlon fits my personality and mindset very well,” said Elmlinger. “Then you add in prosthetics and it makes the race a lot more fun and interesting — I love that extra challenge of switching out legs!”
About US Military Endurance Sports
US Military Endurance Sports (USMES), a division of American Servicemembers Amateur Sports (ASAS) Inc, is a non-profit 501(c)3 organization chartered to support amateur athletes, endurance sports education and activities for current, retired, and Veteran members of the United States Armed Forces. The mission of USMES is to promote endurance sports as part of a healthy lifestyle to active and Veteran members of America’s Uniformed Services. usmes.org
The US Military Endurance Sports (USMES) program, a division of American Servicemembers Amateur Sports Inc. (ASAS), is a non-profit 501(c)3 organization chartered to support amateur athletes, endurance sports education and activities for current, retired, and veteran members of the United States Armed Forces.