Jack Diemar a finalist for Sports Illustrated’s Sports Kid of the Year | VailDaily.com

Jack Diemar a finalist for Sports Illustrated’s Sports Kid of the Year

EAGLE — Jack Diemar is a candidate worth voting for.

Jack is a finalist for Sports Illustrated's Sports Kid of the year. You can vote for him online, and, in the traditions of most election years, you're encouraged to vote for him early and often, at http://www.sikids.com/form/skoty.

Bona fides

The 10-year old's bona fides are long for one so young:

• He's an honor roll student.

• He just won his fourth straight USA Triathlon Youth National Championships, beating the second-place athlete by 34 seconds.

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• The following week Jack won his division at the three-day Rocky Mountain Junior Cycling Challenge.

• He plays top-tier ice hockey as a defenseman.

• He has been a competitive swimmer since he was 5.

• He learned to ski when he was 22 months old, and attends Vail Ski & Snowboard Academy, where he will compete as a Nordic skier this winter.

House of Champions

While Jack may be the best triathlete in his age group in country, he might not be the best triathlete in his own house. Older sisters Hayley and Coco have also won multiple national triathlon titles.

If you're a member of the Diemar clan, there's no view like the one from the top of the podium, "… although scoring top shelf in hockey at the buzzer is pretty close!" Jack said.

Hayley, 14, and Coco, 12, good-naturedly disagree, as siblings will.

"No feeling can beat standing on top of the podium. You feel very accomplished and proud of yourself because you have been training so hard and wanted it so badly," Hayley said.

"Achieving a goal that you have worked so hard for makes all the long days worth it," Coco said.

No couch potatoes

It does not occur to the Diemar Three that instead of running, swimming and biking, they could be sprawled on the couch playing video games and gorging on potato chips.

"I am focused on what I am doing. I would rather be busy than sitting around," Jack said.

"That never occurs to me. I am too worried about getting to the end!" Coco said.

Hayley would rather be doing what she's doing, too.

"I don't really think about that because what I'm doing is a lot more fun (and better) than just sitting around on a couch," she said.

Life after athletics

The three young elite athletes have the same dreams every young athlete shares: professional sports and possible Olympic glory. But even at such tender ages, they're taking the long and practical view at life after sports.

Athletics, they agree, are a vehicle to their futures.

"I am hoping it will get me into a good college so I can get a great education," Jack said.

Hayley sees athletics as an opportunity that opens other opportunities.

"One main benefit is that it gives me many opportunities for my future that include colleges and professional teams. It also keeps me healthy and fit for other sports that I do," Hayley said.

For Coco, it's about setting goals and working toward them. She won a national triathlon title two years ago, and was second this year by less than the length of an iPhone. She's also a National Criterium Champion at USA Cycling National Championships, and a 1600-meter track champion at the AAU National Championships.

"I am hoping to keep improving and meeting my goals. I am hoping it will help me get into a good college and keep me healthy for years to come," Coco said.

The Diemars are former Eagle residents who recently moved back to the valley after living in Jupiter, Florida, and Naperville, Illinois.

Staff Writer Randy Wyrick can be reached at 970-748-2935 and rwyrick@vaildaily.com.

To vote for Jack

To vote for local athlete Jack Diemar for Sports Illustrated Sports Kid of the Year, go to http://www.sikids.com/form/skoty.