30 Nov The Oberoi family: 3 generations of multi-sport lovers
Although we organise events for all ages, it does not happen very often that we see 3 generations of a family taking part. Meet the Oberoi family; Granddad Kogi, Dad Rik, Daughter Riana and Son Ricki are all active multi-sport athletes. So how does this exercise madness affect their family life?
- Being 75 years old, you will likely be the oldest participant in the MetaSprint Series this year. Are you very competitive?
- I am very focussed to achieve the targets I set for myself. I make a plan of how to do an event and stick to it.
- Four years ago you finished on the podium at the MetaSprint Duathlon in the 60+ years old category. Do you have other claims to fame?
- I was the college Gymnastics champion and captain in 1963/64. I completed the London Marathon at age of 55. My targets were to finish within 4hr 45mins, ahead of the police removing the road barriers, and beat the man running dressed as the Big Ben. I achieved all!
- How did your family’s involvement in multisport start?
- Multisport started with my wife when we both wanted to stay trim and healthy. We used to cycle, run and play golf together. Our children followed.
- What keeps you going / motivated?
- Lately my targets have been quite modest – to equal the times of the previous events. I get greater thrills now by finishing at my age. To give something back to society, I was a volunteer marshal at the OCBC cycle event a couple of weeks ago. Reporting for duty at 1:45am was gruelling.
- Was the MetaSprint Series Duathlon in 2012 your first venture into multi-sport?
- Yes, I had never tried triathlon before that. My background is mountain biking & in particular downhill mountain biking. At the time I thought the guys taking part in the races were pretty nuts, and I would never have imagined that a couple of years later I would be out there swimming.
- Are there any sporting lessons you learned from your Dad? Does your father inspire you to stay active?
- My Dad is a great inspiration in many ways. Without his help every day I would not have time to pursue my sports as much.
- You have a daughter of eleven years old and a son of six years old. Do you hope they will follow in your multi-sport footsteps?
- I hope they’ll enjoy sport as much as I do, but I’m not going to push them into it. They attend MetaSport training sessions when all our schedules are aligned – mainly swimming. They take part in cycling events too like OCBC Cycle and Youth Olympic Festival where they both podiumed. We can’t get out on the bikes as often as we’d like as I find the roads around our home are not conducive to safe family cycling.
- Do you sometimes all train together? Is there a bit of friendly family competition?
- We all cycle together sometimes at Sentosa. We did the family warrior challenge earlier this year at Sentosa which involved many obstacles including a 6 foot wooden wall (army style) which Grandad even got over. We got 2nd place. When the BMX track was at Tampines we all used to ride there. Ricki was only 2 years old at the time and used to ride it on a strider. Riana started when she was 5 years old with a micro mini BMX bike.
Riana and Ricki:
- You join your Dad sometimes when he trains with MetaSport. What does it feel like to train with your Dad?
- It feels good & fun because we’re not training alone.
- Riana: It helps me when I am stressed about my school work and we go training together.
- If you had to choose between swimming, cycling and running, which sport would you choose, and why?
- Riana: I would choose swimming and as I also enjoy synchronised swimming and cross training during the weekends.
- Ricki: Cycling because I feel good when I’m cycling
- Do you sometimes train/practice with your Granddad too? If yes, what do you do?
- Yes, we run outside our condo
- What events are you looking forward to in 2018?
- Riana: I want to do duathlon next year. I wanted to do the City60 with grandad this year but it was my exams.
- Ricki: I want to race my bicycle because I feel better in a bicycle race than normal cycling.