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Alumnus Finishes Strong in Olympic Triathlon

Published: August 19, 2008
Dirk Bockel, a former student athlete for both the swimming and cross country teams at The University of Tampa, competed Tuesday in the triathlon at the 2008 summer Olympics in Beijing, China.

Bockel, a Luxembourg national, finished 25th out of 50 athletes competing in the race, with a final time of 1:51:31.

“I’m extremely happy,” Bockel said following the race. “The TV crews were all over me because I pulled ahead about a minute and fifteen seconds ahead of the pack during the biking portion. It feels nearly like winning a medal.”

The sole athlete from Luxembourg in the men’s triathlon, Bockel has competed in numerous races throughout the world in recent years in order to qualify for the Olympics.

“The University of Tampa is where it all started,” Bockel said. “I’m still racing and I still have a lot of goals.” He added that he hopes to relocate to Tampa after competing in more races.

As a UT athlete, Bockel was a first-team all-Sunshine State Conference runner as a member of the cross-country team in 2002 and 2003. He also became the first UT male to earn all-South Region honors in 2002.

He graduated from UT with a degree in international business in 2004.

Click here for Dirk Bockel’s official Olympic biography, or visit Bockel’s personal Web site