Working man: Tyler Butterfield is seen here after finshing third in the Superfrog Triathlon on Sunday with his wife Nikki and daughter Savana. Butterfield said trying for a third Olympics would mean earning less money in helping provide for his family. *Photo by Timothy Carlson/Superfrog Triathlon
Working man: Tyler Butterfield is seen here after finshing third in the Superfrog Triathlon on Sunday with his wife Nikki and daughter Savana. Butterfield said trying for a third Olympics would mean earning less money in helping provide for his family. *Photo by Timothy Carlson/Superfrog Triathlon
<
1
2
>

WEDNESDAY, OCT. 3: Tyler Butterfield said he is uncertain whether or not he will go for his third Olympics in Rio De Janeiro in four years time.

The triathlete has had three top finishes in the last 10 days taking a second in Galvestion, Texas and a seventh and a third this past weekend in San Diego.

Butterfield said he has mixed emotions over a third Olympica campaign having competed in Athens and London.

He said: “Originally I said I would definitely try, but going back through this year and seeing how much it costs, I don’t know.

“Basically it meant I put my results on hold for my sponsors. They don’t look at the ITU that much.”

He said the US triathlon scene is where most of the fame and money is for his sport and the ITU scene, which counts as points for the Olympics, are each is its own little world, with very little crossover between the two.

“In the back of my mind, I would like to go to a third Olympics, but if I go I am going to get a similar spot, around 30th or 35th. On a great day I might be 20th and on a bad day I’ll be in the 40s.

“So it’s pretty hard to put a US career on hold to go to an Olympics and achieve what I’ve basically already achieved.

Career

“Saying that, there’s no better feeling then going representing your country.

“It’s just a hard one when you have a wife and kid and you’re trying to make a professional career.”

He added: “Sponsors don’t want to hear you’re 35th in the Olympics even though I had the fastest bike as there are no medals for that. They’d rather hear that I was second in Galveston.”

He said his current sponsors like Tokio Marine and Philadelphia  Insurance Companies have been very understanding, “but it’s not fair for me to rely on them to support me all the time when there’s other sponsors interested in sponsoring me, but they want me to do Ironman and half Ironman.

“So for the next two years I’ll be doing the US racing and I’ll have to make a decision two years out.”

He said that means a choice between putting two years on hold to produce similar Olympic results or satisfying his sponsors. Butterfield said that’s an easy decision if his sponsors want him to chase Rio de Janeiro.

“I’m happy, because they’re happy and behind me. But if they’re more interested in me racing the US series, then I have to seriously consider that.”

Butterfield said while chasing his Olympic qualifying spot he lost sponsors who went to other triathletes because they raced on the US circuit.

“If I’m not racing in the US, they’re going to sponsor other people.

“If I have a good job doing something, can I justify putting that on hold for 18 months to break even? I won’t make money, I won’t lose money, I’ll just be doing something slightly different.

Justifiable

“Having done it twice, is it really justifiable to do it a third time?

“It’s hard question and four years out, I really don’t know.”

For the time being he is using the end of this season to set up a good race programme for 2013.

Next year he plans on competing in the three big races in the US, which are the Hy-Vee, The 70.3 World Champs and the Ironman World Champs in Kona. There is a week difference between the first two events and then an additional five weeks between the 70.3 World Champs and the Hawaii ironman.

He said: “It’s a big task to do all three. A lot of people and certain coaches might say ‘you’re silly for doing all three’.

“If they didn’t have them in that order, getting longer progressively, then you couldn’t really do all three.”

He said the professional racing circuit is very lucrative.

“If you want to make it as a professional you basically have to be doing these races.”