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An apprentice no more!

Updated: Mar 29, 2022

trisutto triathlon training racing European Champion Brett Sutton Julie Derron

Julie Derron, European Champion, 2021!

This blog might be for our hard core Trisutto family. It's a story of success. It's a story that makes all of our family very proud!

The journey started with Julie Derron joining our group as a junior to be able to train with her sister, and being supported to do so by Nicola Spirig. The champ was instrumental in convincing me 'little pistol', as she became know in our group, be included into our elite training group.

For an introduction to our way of training, Julie accompanied her sister Nina to Australia to start her Trisutto initiation; to learn the techniques we use and to make a gentle introduction to our system without pressure to try and impress me.

trisutto triathlon training racing European Champion Brett Sutton Julie Nina Derron

Nina and Julie Derron at Bribie Island Triathlon in Australia, 2016.

Little pistol on return become known as Nicola's apprentice. She trained with her when possible, starting out doing a third of her training, then on to half, then to three-quarters of the work. It was our goal that Julie would look to the Paris 2024 Olympics. Julie on that path won the European U/23 Championship in 2018.

It was indeed a special day in 2018 when Julie and Nicola first raced together as part of the Swiss Mixed Relay in Nottingham; The master and apprentice

Under 23 European Champion, 2018

Last year little pistol graduated to full blast Nicola training, her apprenticeship was in its last year and she was coping brilliantly. All of a sudden we started to think maybe we should change our focus and make a last minute play for Tokyo Olympics, such was the rapid rate of improvement of our teams outside 'smokey' for selection.

Just as we were starting to 'dream', Julie had a horrific bike accident and broke her shoulder blade, no fracture, it was a complete break. While devastated she showed a calm and steely resolve not seen in one so young. 'We will be back coach', was her quip as I was looking at her in the hospital bed, struggling to find the right words to comfort her that her late charge was now over.

Coaches nightmare, Trisutto ITU team in hospital after 2020 bike accident.

True to her word, Julie recovered and never missed a beat. While this is a great example of her personality, it doesn't match what came next.

Little pistol didn't just come back to racing but achieved enough points to be ranked in the top 50 in the world, and then into the top 30. Sadly however after qualifying for the Olympics she was not picked, due to the ITU ridiculousness of

Federation selection (but that's another story).

While devastated, rather than 'spit the dummy' after missing the Olympics, Julie went on a race tear, winning her first half ironman locally in Uster, then taking a brilliant 2nd behind her country women, the one and only Daniela Ryf in Rapperswil 70.3 Switzerland. She then went to France to win the iconic French Triathlon XL Gérardmer. Returning to ITU racing at the World Cup in Karlovy Vary two weeks ago, Julie took apart one of most difficult bike courses on the circuit on route to victory.

On a race tear - three half iron distance races at Uster, Rapperswil, and Gérardmer followed by a World Cup victory at Karlovy Vary.

To the pinnacle of this story, Julie Derron was crowned European Olympic distance champion last weekend!

Her journey is as inspirational as any story. After the dark hours of the crash and the huge disappointment of not going to the Olympics, both on their own would have crushed a lesser individual, Julie just changed her focus to, 'I'll show 'em!'

Little pistol you sure did!

We are so proud of you!

You are the apprentice no more, but now a certified member of a Sutto professional animal class! I can pay you no more of a compliment.

Julie Derron European champion!

You earned it!

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