By ZAC MILBANK
SANFL players, past and present, are gearing up to get involved in the inaugural Team Up Triathlon on Sunday November 19 to raise funds and awareness about the effects of concussion.
Set to be held at the Semaphore foreshore from 9.30am, the Team Up Triathlon is being driven by Adelaide-based Concussion Legacy Foundation ambassador Luke Ivens.
Ivens, who played 194 League games for North Adelaide between 2000 and 2013, has been diagnosed with probable Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE), a degenerative brain disease caused in part by repeated head trauma.
The former Rooster is passionate about not only supporting those with brain injuries but raising awareness so that his story becomes ”one of hope, rather than despair.”
”As an Adelaide based ambassador for the Concussion Legacy Foundation Australia, my main goal is to spread awareness and be an advocate to support individuals and their families who suffer from similar effects,” Ivens said.
”I hope to visit football clubs across the State to spread the word of the importance of correct concussion protocols and the risks involved if they are not followed.
”I want to stress that I certainly don’t hold any resentment towards North Adelaide or the SANFL as there was no understanding of the potential risks or protocols in place. Yes, I am faced with some challenges that I need to manage throughout my life, but would I take it back? Definitely not! The game gave me so much joy and lifelong friendships. It also played a big role in shaping the person I am today.”
SANFL Executive General Manager Football Matt Duldig
''Luke is demonstrating what can be achieved with such a positive attitude – the Team Up Triathlon promises to be a really fun day.''
SANFL Executive General Manager Football Matt Duldig said the League was proud to be a major supporter of the Team Up Triathlon, admiring Ivens’ enthusiasm to raise awareness throughout the South Australian sporting community.
”Luke is demonstrating what can be achieved with such a positive attitude – the Team Up Triathlon promises to be a really fun day,” Duldig said.
”It’s heart-warming to see so many SANFL teams entered to compete on the day – male and female players, together with coaches, displaying their support.”
Each Team Up Triathlon team includes three competitors, with seven of the eight SANFL clubs poised to field multiple teams.
Competitors will swim 300m, ride for 12km before finishing off with a 5km road run amidst what is expected to be a carnival atmosphere.
SANFL will be conducting fun footy clinics as part of the festivities, which will also include the presence of food trucks, live music and entertainment and market stalls.
For more information, visit https://teamuptriathlon.com/