A SPORTS lecturer from Weymouth College has been selected to represent Team GB at a major championship later this month.
Tom Priest, 27, will compete in the Aquathlon at the European Championships which will be held in Germany tomorrow.
The gruelling event is similar to a triathlon but without the cycling section, meaning Mr Priest will have to complete a 1,000m open water swim, followed by a 5,000m run.
He has been in intense training ahead of the event as well as continuing to teach at the college and because the Aquathlon is not yet an Olympic event, he has also had to secure his own funding and sponsorship to allow him to compete at the championships, with Weymouth College agreeing to sponsor him for the race.
Mr Priest said: “On a personal note, the opportunity to represent my country at a major championship is a massive achievement.
“As the sport is self-funded it can cost quite a bit to compete, which is why I’m really grateful to the College for its encouragement and support, and for agreeing to sponsor me to race in Cologne.
“Obviously, I hope to bring home a medal.”
If successful at the championships, which will be held in Cologne, Mr Priest could then be selected to represent Team GB again at the World Championships, which will be held in Edmonton, Canada, in August.
His selection for the national squad is also further good news for the college, which is one of only five colleges in the United Kingdom which was ranked as “Outstanding” for sport by Ofsted.
Vice Principal at the college, Rob Jones, said Mr Priest was an “inspiration” for its students.
Mr Jones said: “We’re extremely proud of Tom’s achievements. We aim to provide our students with outstanding teaching and inspiring role models.
“Tom is precisely such an inspiration and we wish him every success in Cologne.