Athlete Biographies

Here is just a sneak peak of some of our over 160 members on the team!

Professionals:

Will Huffman
Scott Wilkinson

Members:

Ali Senz | Austin Brinkley | Annette Harpole | Daniel Hitchcock | Fabrizio Mansilla | Kyle Adams | Treat Peterson | Sean Fannin | Carleigh Kutac | Cassie Halloway | Jack Parks IV | Melissa Hunt | Robert Dao | Kim Reiff  | Benjamin Forrest | Dillon Thomlinson | Austin Schell | Stephanie Mak | Michael Arishita | Eric Pinon | Josh Messick l Taylor Dayton


Will Huffman

Favorite Sport: Triathlon

Major and Graduation Year: Psychology, Alumni

How did you get into triathlon: I got into triathlons for fun after a running injury

What is your favorite thing about triathlon: Friends, travel, and training

Favorite race: Tiszaujvaros World Cup because of the spectators and after party

Sports background: High school cross country and swimming

Other hobbies and interests: Eating 

Hidden talents: Making pancakes and Epic Mealtimes

Anything else unique or awesome: Follow Will at williamhuffman.com or @triwilliam!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Scott Wilkinson

Favorite Sport:Cycling

Major and Graduation Year: Aerospace Engineering, Graduated Dec. 2013

How did you get into triathlon: After I learned to run before I could walk, swim before I could tread water, and ride a bicycle before a tricycle, triathlons were calling my name.

What is your favorite thing about triathlon: Making car noises as I pass people on the bike.

Favorite race: CapTex 2013. That's where I got my pro card!

Sports background: Running. 

Other hobbies and interests: Eating ice cream after I banned myself from eating oreos. 

Hidden talents: Winning criteriums with a breakaway on tennis shoes.

Anything else unique or awesome: Follow Scott at scottwilkinsonracing.com or @Scotty_Wilky!

 

 

 

 

Ali Senz

Favorite Sport: Trail Running

Major and Graduation Year: Biomedical Engineering (2014)

How did you get into triathlon: I’ve been a runner and a swimmer all my life, it just made sense to see what I could to with the two combined. Still learning how to bike though!

Favorite thing about triathlon: You get what you give. Triathlon is a sport where hard work pays off, and your results are dependent upon you and you alone! It’s really nice to see change with increased training.

Favorite race: Nationals (duh)

Sports background: Swimming (17 yrs), Soccer (9 yrs), Track and Cross Country (3 years), Water Polo (1 yr of pain and getting beat up), Triathlon (2 years) 

Hobbies and interests: Singing, Skiing, Drawing, Knitting (call me grandma I guess) 

Hidden talents: I’m pretty terrible at the Ukulele… I also won a pretty major belly flop contest (bruises on eye sockets and thighs not pretty)

Anything else unique or awesome: I’m sorta known as the Colorado girl around here because I’m from Golden, CO. Count on me to complain endlessly about the heat and humidity around these parts. Boy, that would be awkward if another girl from Colorado joined the team….


Austin BrinkleyAustin Brinkley

Favorite Sport: Track

Major and Graduation Year: Ag. Communications & Journalism. Class of 2014. 

How did you get into triathlon: Did college track/cross country for a few years, got into obstacle racing(Spartan Race, Warrior Dash, ect.), and discovered the triathlon team after going out for cross country at A&M. 

Favorite thing about triathlon: Having to switch up what muscles you’re using throughout the race. It gives a new challenge beyond just running.

Favorite race: the Spartan Race Sprint.

Sports background: 3-year varsity cross country runner and sprinter for Nederland High School. 2 years doing unattached college cross country and track meets. About three years of doing various obstacle races. Almost ran cross country for A&M, but I already like triathlon much better. 

Hobbies and interests: Music, basketball, video games, anything else that’s fun.

Hidden talents: I rap. I have an album and everything.

Anything else unique or awesome: Everything! Just kidding. I’m not that cocky.

 

 

 

 

 

Annette Harpole

Favorite Sport: Cross Country!!!!

Major and Graduation Year: Pre-Nursing; Class of 2016

How did you get into triathlon: Four year high school varsity cross country runner, LOVE of running. Obsession with exercise and getting out of the house for hours to explore on an old bike. Swimming during lifeguarding.

Favorite thing about triathlon: The challenge of pushing your body past normal pain and exhaustion to complete a race. Training in college station, biking all over the countryside; swimming in Lake Bryan. The TEAM of course.

Favorite race: Regionals, even though it was a duathlon, I had a fantastic race and felt strong, though the biking was absolute hell; the teams were all very friendly too. 

Sports background: 6 year cross country runner; 4 year high school varsity Pole Vaulter (PR 10 feet) 

Other hobbies and interests: Swinging; Roller blading; Exploring; Hiking; Animals

Hidden talents: I can climb nearly anything. Really.

Anything else unique or awesome: Wicked awesome sense of humor; sarcasm pro; ball of energy


 

Daniel Hitchcock

Favorite Sport: To watch? Football. But definitely not to play….

Major and Graduation Year: Biochemistry PhD Program, Never 

How did you get into triathlon: I used to run, I already biked to school, and I wanted to learn how to swim competitively. And I was out of shape (still am).

Favorite thing about triathlon: Sitting down after a race.

Favorite race: Triaggieland 2012—I woke up in my own bed, biked to the race, raced, got some hardware, biked 10 minutes back home, then went to lake Bryan with the rest of the Triathlon team.

Sports background: Cross Country (2003….) 

Other hobbies and interests: Music, Computers, Biochemistry and Road Trips

Hidden talents: I don’t hide my talents. I just literally don’t have any. 

Anything else unique or awesome: It’s easier simply to say what’s not awesome about me. My throwing arm, not that great… but that’s about it. I’m generally pretty awesome.

 

 

 

 

  

Fabrizio Mansilla

Favorite sport: Four wheeling, triathlons, Rowing, and Soccer.

Graduation Date: December 2013, Industrial and System Engineering 

How did you get into triathlon: Melissa Hunt and her sister Chrissy, who pushed me to join the team. Also, I want to thank to my first swimming instructor and friend, Michelle Dawes, who taught me the basic techniques to learn to swim. It was a great experience racing and training with the team. 

Favorite thing about triathlon: I am from Santa Cruz- Bolivia. It is an honor being honor being part of the triathlon team at TAMU. Definitely, the team helped me get where I am today as a triathlete. I want to thank Melissa and Chrissy Hunt, and Michelle Dawes;They are cool and legit. Everyone should be on our team!

Do not be intimidated by some competitive team members. They train hard and are a great model to follow, but there are also team mates like me who are slow and want to achieve something beyond speed. Also, being in this team helped me be on shape and create resistance.

Favorite race: Did my first triathlon in July 2012, and I will do an Ironman Texas on May 2013.

Sports Background:  Rowing and Soccer

Extra Info: I am graduating in December, and I will miss the team and the awesome people that I met there. I hope our friendship will last my dear zebras comrades. I wish you success and well to you all. Thanks for everything.    

Kyle Adams

Favorite Sport: Track and Baseball

Major and Graduation Year: Engineering, 2015

How did you get into triathlon: I was walking around when everyone was trying to get people to join their club, and spotted out of the corner of my eye from across the street a hyper team. My eyes locked and it was love at first sight 

What is your favorite thing about triathlon: We are more than just a team. We are a close knit group of friends that like to work out with each other, and love to party together.

Favorite race: Katy. It was my first race I did, and experienced the full wrath of cold weather.

Sports background: I played baseball for 12 years, ran cross country for 5 years, track for 3 years, played soccer for 3 years, basketball for 2 years, fishing tournaments for 4 years, and triathlon for one year. I won several championships in baseball, went to playoffs in soccer, won multiple pro tournaments, came in second place at state in track for the 400m, and am on the best team for triathlons.

Other hobbies and interests: I love shooting, lifting weights getting my truck stuck in mud, fishing, and anything that has to do with the outdoors.

Hidden talents: I can write songs and poetry.

Anything else unique or awesome: Of course there is! Haha jk, I’m not that prideful.


Treat Peterson

Favorite Sport: Triathlon (duh!)

Major and Graduation Year: Psychology, 2014

How did you get into triathlon: I was attempting to join the United States Naval Academy, and for them you have to specialize in a sport. So, I tried Triathlon thinking “it can’t be that hard”. I was wrong…But I’ve been in love with it ever since.

Favorite thing about triathlon: The mental aspect, I can daydream in a long running race, but with Triathlon my mind has to be focused for hours during the swim, bike, and run.

Favorite race: Kemah Triathlon, ocean water swim with a boat jump start, decent bike course, and a scenic run on the Kemah Boardwalk. It’s pretty awesome.

Sports background: I did martial arts from age 9 all the way through high school, otherwise none. 

Other hobbies and interests: School.

Hidden talents: I am a movie buff, I have an opinion and facts on almost every movie out there.

Anything else unique or awesome: I am a member of The Fightin Texas Aggie Corps of Cadets, 2nd Regiment, Company F-1!

 

 

 

Sean Fannin

Favorite Sport: Paintball & Cycling (all disciplines)

Major and Graduation Year: Sport Management-- 2014 

How did you get into triathlon: When I was a freshman in high school, I was really into road racing and I joined my high school tri club as a means to cross train. I joined the A&M team freshman year and completed my first race-The Mean Green.

Favorite thing about triathlon: Triathlon training and racing is a simple pleasure—even with all of the structure and purpose, I feel like I’m a kid out to play.

Favorite race: The Cap Tex in Austin held on Memorial Day is really sweet. Racing along-side world class professionals through the streets of my home town is a blast. I used to ride my bike to school on those streets!

Sports background: I played little league soccer, baseball, swimming, golf, skateboarding, paintball (tournament) rock climbing, high school wrestling, mountain biking, Tae Kwon Do, Kook Sool Won, road cycling—the list continues.

Other hobbies and interests: I enjoy traveling, cooking, going to shows, golf, reading, writing, billiards, and general excursions. Yard work- I find it therapeutic (no joke) hire me to mow your yard this summer.

 

Hidden talents: I play the trumpet.

Anything else unique or awesome: I am a descendent of Colonel James Walker Fannin Jr. of the Texas Revolution.

 

 

Carleigh Kutac

Favorite Sport: 

To play: Bowling, Shooting, and Water Polo.

To watch: Football, Baseball and Hockey.

Major and Graduation Year: Master Public Health in Biostatistics TAMU HSC '14. BS Biochemistry & Minor in Spanish from UNT '12.

How did you get into triathlon: I was encouraged by friends last year who thought it would be up my alley. Little did they know, the last time I rode rode a bike was in kindergarten... I literally went from training wheels to clip-ins in March of 2012!

Favorite thing about triathlon: I Love being around "my kind" of people. Good folks who love to work out, love to race, love speed, love to be outside. This team knows how to live it up and laugh a lot!....Oh, I also like sweaty hugs :)

Favorite race: Mean Green--it was nice to be back in my old stompin' grounds!

Sports background: Cross Country, Swimming, Track, and Water Polo at Memorial HS in Houston. NCAA-DI Swimming and Track @UNT. Sadly, this brings no real advantage--my longest race in college was 4 minutes and 43 seconds ( the 1500m)

Other hobbies and interests: Math, Country Music, Traveling, Camping, and Good Food. I also really like surfing, jet skiing, and tubing!

Hidden talents: Spring Board Diving. Last year our swimming/diving team needed another diver for point purposes. I guess my swim coach figured I was short and not afraid to dive head first from great heights. So, I took on the challenge to learn 12 (legal)dives off the 1m and 3m in six weeks. Countless wipe outs, bruises, smacks, and belly flops later, I competed in the Sun Belt Conference Championships last year as a diver. I scored points for the team and did not finish last!

Anything else unique or awesome: I am a Natural Blonde, Houston born and bred, have a wacky ability to recall numbers, and I am a direct descendent of two previous US Presidents! 

Cassie Holloway

Favorite Sport: Triathlon/Snow Skiing

Major and Graduation Year: Animal Science, 2013 whoop!

How did you get into triathlon: Picked up a tri magazine and decided to try out the workout plan inside and after my first race was hooked!

Favorite thing about triathlon: The fact that whenever I tell some one I do triathlons they automatically assume I’m a BAMF

Favorite race: BCS Half Marathon because so many people race because, for whatever reason, 13 miles seems more attainable than a tri so I kept running into people that I hadn’t seen in a long time and just the camaraderie was awesome. Plus the spectator signs were pretty great too. My favorite: Run like Ryan Reynolds is waiting for you at the finish line. 

Sports background: Tennis in highschool, rode horses my whole life, Skied for the past 12 years

Other hobbies and interests: Pigs, crossfit, photobombing

Hidden talents: I can touch my nose with my tongue…

Anything else unique or awesome: I just really love life and my dog.

 

 

 

 

Jack Parks IV

Favorite Sport: Offroad Triathlons

Major and Graduation Year: Manufacturing & Mechanical Engineering Technology (2012)

How did you get into triathlon: A triathlon magazine suggested that Xterra Camp Eagle was a good beginner’s offroad venue. It turns out that Camp Eagle is one of the most difficult places to mountain bike in Texas, but I fell in love with the sport anyways.

Favorite thing about triathlon: Winning! Makes the endless training hours worth it.

Favorite race: Xterra Camp Eagle. This venue is second to none and I look forward to it each year.

Sports background: I suck at anything involving a ball, but I’m pretty competitive at triathlon.

Other hobbies and interests: Sailing, climbing, SCUBA, & hunting. 

Hidden talents: I make a really tasty banana cranberry nut bread

Anything else unique or awesome: I consider road tri’s off season training for the mountain venues.

 

 

 

Melissa Hunt

Favorite Sport: Riding..horses! Hunter/Jumper

Major and Graduation Year: Kinesiology-Applied Exercise Physiology 2014.The same as Cici Teter, Robert Dao and Brandon Elkert! Yay for having classes with teammates ;).

How did you get into triathlon: I used to swim competitively, and needed something to do when I stopped

Favorite thing about triathlon: If I injure myself running, I can always swim or bike.

Favorite race: Nationals!! The best race hands down. 

Sports background: Swimming, and Hunter/Jumper

Other hobbies and interests: anything active or moving around. I can't sit still.

Hidden talents: I can name pretty much any Disney song within 2 seconds.

Anything else unique or awesome: My twin, Chrissy Hunt just graduated Spring 2013 from UT. She was on the Triathlon team there too! Through her I became good friends with their team. I discovered that even though we all compete against different schools, we all have something in common, triathlon. I have made many new friends not only from our team, but from many other teams in our region!! It makes going to races that much more fun. Especially races like Regionals and Nationals. I look forward to seeing all of my friends more than racing!

 

 

Sir Robert Dao

Favorite Sport: Cycling 

Major and Graduation Year: Kinesiology - Applied Exercise Physiology Track, 2014

How did you get into triathlon: Through my high school cross country coach. I was never a spectacular runner in high school but he though that I had the build for cycling and was a good enough runner to be competitive. My training partner in high school convinced me to do the Ironhead Race Production Iron Brothers Super Sprint Triathlon in June or 2010 as my first triathlon and from there I was hooked! A year later, I did Tri Waco as my first Olympic distance race and have competed around Texas as well as a couple races out of state.  

Favorite Race: U.S. Toyota Open in Dallas. The course suits my skill sets and its at a nice time of year (October). What I like most is the relatively technical bike course. It has a pretty even mixture of corners, straight roads, and climbs that allow me to gain time on other athletes due to things such as bike handling skills. Though I will have to say that the environment every year at the USAT Collegiate Nationals is without a doubt unbeatable. The spirit and pride in your team is something that just isn't seen anywhere else.

Sports Background: My background is in running. I was a 4 year high school cross country runner before getting into triathlon. 

Anything else unique or awesome: Served as president for the 2012-13 school year.  Very spirited leader of the team and likes to lead yells before big races like Collegiate Nationals and have a tradition of running through the finish line at Nationals with the giant novelty A&M cowboy hat. 

 

Kim Reiff

Favorite Sport: Football

Major and Graduation Year: Junior, Supply Chain Management and International Business, hoping to go into corporate law

How did you get into triathlon: Senior year of high school, after sports were over needed something to work towards

Favorite thing about triathlon: Swimming and the friends!

Favorite race: The most fun race I've ever done was the Tough Mudder

Sports background: I played basketball, did field events for track & field and played lacrosse

Other hobbies and interests: Golf, Art

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Benjamin Forrest

Favorite Sport: Track & Field (sorry...)

Major and Graduation Year: Graduate student pursuing a Ph.D. in Physics (Astronomy track) - 2018

How did you get into triathlon: After an injury during track season my senior year, my body couldn't handle the amount of running I wanted to do. So I turned to cycling and swimming for additional workouts.

Favorite race:  2013 USAT Collegiate Nationals - a great atmosphere, athletes from across the country, and memories for a lifetime.

Favorite thing about triathlon:  The run.

Sports background: Soccer through sophomore year of high school

Cross country last two years of H.S. and four years in undergrad (Rutgers University)
Track and Field since 6th grade, including four years in undergrad

Other hobbies and interests: Reading, writing, art, music

Hidden talents: If I told you it wouldn't be hidden...

 

 

 

 

Dillon Thomlinson

Favorite Sport: 

Major and Graduation Year: 

How did you get into triathlon:

Favorite thing about triathlon: 

Favorite race: 

Sports background: 

Other hobbies and interests: 

Hidden talents: 

Anything else unique or awesome: 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Austin Schell

Favorite Sport: Soccer, football, and duh triathlon!!!

Major and Graduation Year:  2015 Biomedical Sciences 

How did you get into triathlon: I did drumline in high school and always had that competitive drive for athletics but never had the time to do anything other than occasional recreational sports. I ran a few miles a week but I would get bored of running after a while (sorry track people.) I'm extremely competitive and sought to conquer the most badass thing (triathlon of course) even though I couldn't swim and didn't have a bike...

Favorite thing about triathlon: If i get bored or injured with one discipline, I just train something else for a while. 

Favorite race: Nationals! Hopefully they get a full length bike course for 2014.

Sports background:  Recreational soccer for 7 years up until high school. Middle school track. No high school sports unfortunately. Favorite race: Nationals! Hopefully they get a full length

Other hobbies and interests:  All kinds of sports; soccer, football, basketball, tennis. Way too many videogames... 

Hidden talents:  I drink the college station tap water straight out of the faucet

Anything else unique or awesome:  So glad I joined this team. Amazing group of people, dedicated and passionate athletes, fun to be around. This team is unique and awesome!

 


Stephanie Mak

Favorite Sport: 

Major and Graduation Year: 

How did you get into triathlon:

Favorite thing about triathlon: 

Favorite race: 

Sports background: 

Other hobbies and interests: 

Hidden talents: 

Anything else unique or awesome: 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Michael Arishita

Favorite Sport: Running

Major and Graduation Year: Biomedical Sciences, 2016 - A-A-A-A-A

How did you get into triathlon: Always been a little Tricurious...finally tried it, fell in love, and coundn't get enough of it

Favorite thing about triathlon: Peeing in my wetsuit when the water is cold

Favorite race: Chocolate Milk Mile!!

Sports background: Swam club Swimming age 4-8. Played soccer when I was in Kindergarden for 1 game.  Ran Track 7th grade - 12th Grade.

Other hobbies and interests: Capture the Flag and Poptarts!

Hidden talents: Make the best Omelets and flips them like a pro!

Anything else unique or awesome: Colossians 3:23 "Whatever you do work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Taylor Dayton

Favorite Sport: Running

Major and Graduation Year: Mechanical Engineering 2014

How did you get into triathlon: Started running in the 5th grade. Went on to track and cross country. Got to college and decided I wanted to change things up a little, so i joined  the tri team.

Favorite thing about triathlon: the people.

Favorite race: Really can't choose just one, but i love the training and the races are just kinda the gravy on top.

Sports background: Running.

Other hobbies and interests: Traveling, guitar, backpacking, fourteeners, climbing, toga, skiing, walking in no particular direction with no particular destination.

Hidden talents: I grow substantial amounts of hair.

Anything else unique or awesome: I like peanut butter. A lot.

 

 

 

 

Josh Messick

Favorite Sport: 

Major and Graduation Year: 

How did you get into triathlon:

Favorite thing about triathlon: 

Favorite race: 

Sports background: 

Other hobbies and interests: 

Hidden talents: 

Anything else unique or awesome: 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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