Meet the OPTT Coaching Staff
To continue as the Lansing area’s premier triathlon training group, continually enhancing training opportunities offered to our athletes via best-in-class skills development and expanded offerings for experienced athletes, while maintaining and promoting options for emerging athletes.
Craig started coaching with the Oak Park Tri Team in 2012 and has been our team leader since 2017. Craig is a certified Swim Speed Coach and has former certifications as a USAT Level 1 coach and spinning instructor. Craig completed his first triathlon in 2011 and prefers 70.3 and sprint distance events. Craigs favorite triathlon is the Ludington Lighthouse Tri (when the lake is a reasonable temperature)! When asked what race he is most proud of Craig had this to say “I’m proud of several of my races, but I’m more proud of the athletes I’ve coached, who have learned to swim, overcome their fear of the water, battled injury or negative self-talk to shatter their goals.” Craig’s favorite part of coaching with the OPTT is the positive team spirit and team camaraderie! Craig’s big race for 2019 will be the Ragnar Wasatch Relay. When Craig isn't training or coaching he spends his time playing in a local band, tinkering with electronics, racing cars, helping with his wife’s non-profit, and spending time with his family.
Chris Sharrock started coaching with the Oak Park Tri Team in 2015 and is a USAT Level 1 certified coach, Swim Speed Certified and a certified spinning instructor. Chris competed in he first triathlon in 2005 and prefers the Olympic and 70.3 distance events. Chris’s favorite races are the Frankenmuth Oly and MiTi 70.3. When asked what race he is most proud of Chris said this: “Louisville 140.6, I obsessed about that race for a year in advance. Worked with a great coach and felt like I followed and executed my plan well. Seeing my family at the finish line was something I'll never forget”. We also asked Chris about his favorite part of coaching with the OPTT: “When I hear the words "I've never pushed that hard before" 🙂 Seeing the breakthroughs that our amazing athletes have every year is the best. Whether its conquering the fear of open water, getting a new PR, or developing a new skill they never thought was possible”. Chris’s big race for the 2019 season is the Mighty Mac Swim. When Chris is not training and racing he is a musician, he plays in a few bands regularly, and also operate a recording studio part time. He also has three kids including a new baby at home so he loves to invest as much time as possible with them as well.
Coach Chris does offer private coaching you can contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Ashley started coaching with the Oak Park Tri team in 2017 she is a certified spinning instructor and has a bachelor’s degree in physical education. She competed in her first triathlon in 2005 and enjoys the longer distance events including 70.3 and 140.6 distances. Ashley’s favorite local triathlon is the Grand Rapids Tri because she knows so many people out on the course and you can do any distance from sprint to 70.3. When asked about the race she is most proud of Ashley had this to say: “I am most proud of finishing my first Ironman at IMLOU in 2017. There are not words to express the feelings and emotions that come with crossing an IM finish line for the first time; it was one of the biggest accomplishments of my life.” Ashley’s “A” race for this year is Ironman Mont Tremblant she is looking forward to the journey of crossing her second ironman finish line! We also asked Ashley what the best part of coaching with the OPTT is: “I love the team camaraderie and helping other athletes set and achieve their goals. Working out with a group is way more fun than doing it alone at home! When Ashley is not training or racing she enjoys spending time with her husband and 2 daughters.
Alexa started coaching with the Oak Park Tri Team in 2018; she is a USAT level 1 certified coach and a certified spinning instructor. Alexa competed in her first triathlon in 2007 and enjoys the longer distance events including 70.3 and 140.6 distances. Alexa’s favorite race is IMLOU, however she also has a fondness for Epic Events Swim to the Moon and Battle of Waterloo Triathlon. When asked what race she is most proud of Alexa had this to say “IMLOU!! This was my first Ironman. I went into the race thinking there is no way I could do it, and realized halfway through my run that there was nothing that could stop me from crossing that finish line. Having my family at the finish meant the world to me!!!” We also asked Alexa what she enjoyed most about coaching with the OPTT: “I absolutely LOVE the camaraderie between the teammates. I find more joy helping others attain their goals than I find in achieving my own!” Alexa’s “A” race for 2019 is Ironman Mont Tremblant this will be her third ironman distance race. When Alexa is not training or racing she enjoys spending time with her kiddos and crazy huskies!
Alexa does provide private coaching for multisport athletes if you would like more information please contact her at email@example.com or 517-515-4711.
Todd Kaufmann started coaching with the Oak Park Tri Team in 2017, he is a certified spinning instructor and lifeguard. Todd completed his first triathlon in 2006 and although he prefers sprint distance racing his favorite race is Ironman Lousiville. When asked what race he is most proud of Todd had this to say “The Hawk Island Kids Triathlon. I was involved in the planning of the first kids Tri events and it is awesome to see the kids excitement and sense of accomplishment when they complete the race. Kids are the future of the sport and if they grow to love endurance events at a young age, it can have a huge impact on the rest of their lives.” We also asked Todd about is favorite part of coaching with OPTT: “The people. Triathletes are awesome in that there is a mutual admiration for each other and it doesn't matter how fast or slow you are.” Todd’s goal race for the 2019 season is Ironman Louisville. When Todd is not training or racing he his busy running his two kids around to their activities!
Rick Janka started coaching the Oak Park Junior tri team in 2017 and recently earned his USAT Level 1 coaching certification. Rick competed in his first triathlon in 2014 and prefers long course racing at the 70.3 and 140.6 distances. Michigan Titanium is Rick’s favorite race. When asked what race he is most proud of Rick had this to say: “MiTi was my first full distance triathlon. I am very proud of how I performed that day. There were not many participants. So, much of the time on the bike and run was without the camaraderie of other athletes. It required a great deal of mental and emotional strength to keep going.” Ricks favorite part of coaching with the OPTT is “helping other athletes learn and grow in the sport he loves”. Ricks goal race for 2019 is Ironman Louisville. When he’s not training or racing Rick spends his time playing with his 3 kids.
Coach Rick does offer private coaching, you can contact him at Rickjanka.firstname.lastname@example.org or 517-331-6809 for more information.