Scott and Sarah McMillan will compete in their first International Triathlon Union World Championship when Penticton hosts the Multisport Festival Aug. 18 to 27. The McMillans are competing in the cross triathlon. Submitted photo

Couple ready to battle in Cross Triathlon

Scott and Sarah McMillan are competing in their first ITU World Championship in Penticton

The couple that races together, stays together.

At least that rings true in the McMillan household. The Penticton couple will compete against other age group athletes in the International Triathlon Union (ITU) Multisport World Championships Cross Triathlon (1.5 kilometre swim, 31-km bike and 8-km run) on Aug. 23. And, they will do it with a competitive fire burning between them.

“We have a little bit of a fun competitiveness between us,” said Sarah, who recently competed in Xterra in Canmore, finishing the 1,500 m swim, 26-km bike and 10-km run in three hours 18 minutes 33 seconds, good for 50th place. “We always joke about it. Really it’s more just being out there together. It makes it even more special. (We) push each other, just see how far we can go. The reality of having a family and working full-time, and being able to do this, is pretty special.”

Sarah wants to beat him, but lets out a hard laugh in the same breath and states she doesn’t really think it will happen.

“Being the guy in the relationship, I can never let my wife beat me,” said Scott, admitting that Sarah nearly did once. “There is that competition within the household.”

When it comes to devoting time to training, they help each other out by taking turns taking care of their two kids, aged four and seven. Scott said he wouldn’t be doing this if it were not for his wife who talked him into it. He has been busy over the last three years building the Xco Tech Inc. business. He also hasn’t raced in five years. After competing in Ironman races and the Kona World Championship twice, he is looking forward to competing in a world-class event again.

“That whole atmosphere, the few days leading up to it, that morning, I like that excitement,” he said. “It’s pretty cool that we both get on this national team.”

It will be the first time for both of them to compete in a world championship race.

“I always wanted to have a national uniform. Now it’s pretty fun to actually do a race in a national kit,” he said. “The big thing too is our kids get to see the both of us race.”

Sarah loves the idea of racing in their hometown.

“If we could just ride our bikes down from home to the start of the race, is just the best thing ever,” she joked. “You have the local crowd. All your friends are out there racing too, supporting each other. You can’t beat that. I love that. Ideally I would like to win gold in my age group (45 to 49). That’s what I’m going for.”