Sam Appleton is no stranger to the top of the podium. He has 15 Ironman 70.3 victories to his name, and has raced to five top-10 finishes at Ironman 70.3 World Championships. Sam races and trains with the CADEX Tri frameset and CADEX WheelSystems. Originally from Sydney, Australia, Sam began competing in triathlons at age 14 and quickly began rising through the ranks. He now lives and trains in Boulder, Colorado.
|April 20, 1990
2022: 3rd at Ironman Cairns (Australia)
2021: 2nd at Ironman 70.3 Boulder (Colorado); 3rd at Ironman 70.3 Oceanside (California); 9th at Ironman 70.3 World Championships in St. George, Utah
2020: 6th at Challenge Pro Daytona PTO World Championship
2019: 1st at Ironman 70.3 Santa Rosa (California); 1st at Ironman 70.3 Waco (Texas); 2nd at Ironman Coeur d'alene (Idaho)
2018: 1st at Ironman 70.3 Geelong (Australia); 1st at Ironman 70.3 Santa Rosa (California); 4th at North American Ironmnan 70.3 Championship
2017: 1st at Ironman 70.3 Geelong (Australia); 1st at Challenge Melbourne Aisa Pacific Championships (Australia); 4th at Ironman 70.3 World Championships (USA)
|Intro to triathlon
|I was a very active kid and I did a lot of swimming, athletics and played soccer for many years as I grew up. When I became a teenager I noticed I had a talent for endurance running and swimming, so I thought why not add a bike leg in there too. I did my first triathlon when I was 14, and I was hooked! I didn’t know the places the sport would take me back then, but here I am 16 years later, lucky enough to have my passion as my job.
|If I had to pick one event, it would be Santa Rosa 70.3 in California. I have won that race 4 times out of 5 starts, and I just love the course and the event as a whole. The ride takes you through the vineyards of Sonoma County and the run finishes in downtown Santa Rosa. Santa Rosa is also home to my favorite brewery, Russian River Brewing Company, so I am sure that tips the scale a little bit too.
|What do you carry on a long ride?
|I carry a spare tube, Co2 and pump in case my tubeless doesn’t auto seal. I also like to carry some cash and stop for a cookie at the store in Ward, a popular mountainroute in Colorado. These cookies are amazing when you’re 3 hours into a 4-5 hr ride! I also carry some headphones to catch up on podcasts, I do a lot of riding alone and like the solitude it provides.
|Favorite place to train
|I may be biased but I think Boulder, Colorado is the best place I have ever trained. That’s why I choose to live here! It has great infrastructure for training, with plenty of running trails and great cycling routes. Because the town is super popular for cycling, there are a lot of bike paths and room for cyclists on the road too. The population here is used to driving with cyclists on the road, so I feel safe out on the roads too, which is a big plus for me. Boulder in general is a very active city, and there are always people out enjoying the outdoors.
|Dream vacation spot
|My wife is from Kauai, Hawai’i. We have been there once together and it is beautiful. I would love to go back there again!
|Films or TV you love
|I am actually a pretty big film/TV guy. Some of my favorite movies are Inception, Sunshine, Arrival. My favorite TV shows are True Detective (first season only - you can skip the other 2 seasons), Breaking Bad, Watchman, the Chernobyl mini series, plus probably so many more that I am missing that I can’t remember right now!
|It’s hard for me to pick, I have so many. I am currently reading The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides. Its a mystery/thriller that I am really enjoying! Some of my favorite book series are The Riftwar series by Raymond Feist, The Rigante series by David Gemmell, and Lord of the Rings.
|Words to live by
|In a world where you can be anything, choose to be kind.