A Special Spectator for Chantal Givens in Sarasota

Published On: March 24, 2016

Chantal Givens recently returned home following a successful competition in Sarasota, Florida, March 12 and 13. The athlete placed second at the 2016 Sarasota CAMTRI Paratriathlon American Championships, which leaves her ranked within the top seven worldwide and keeps her in the running for the Paralympics in Rio this September. “It takes some of the pressure off,” said Givens about the results, “but there is still important work to be done.”

This particular competition was unique for another reason: Givens had a special hometown supporter there to cheer her on.

Maria Mitousis, the Winnipeg lawyer who sustained injuries including the loss of her hand in a bomb blast in July 2015, made the Sarasota event part of a vacation she and her partner had planned.

After first connecting last summer, the two women have developed a friendship, meeting for coffee, attending a local concert and working out together.

Givens was pleased to have Mitousis there for the Sunday race, which also happened to fall on Maria’s birthday. “It was awesome. It made me feel really great having her there,” Givens said. “Getting to know Maria has taught me a lot about myself and has encouraged me to dig deeper, give a bit more. I have so much respect for her and what she’s been going through.”

What’s next for Givens on her Road to Rio?

It’s just been announced that she will compete at a World Paratrialthon Event in Penrith, Australia at the end of April. In preparation, Givens will continue to fine-tune her training. “Florida was a solid race,” she reflected, “but it left me with a few things to refine so that Australia will be an even better event.”

Read more blogs from Chantal Givens on goforitchantal.com.