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Dispatch: Tyler Butterfield On His Best Distance, Bermudian Pride, And More

  • By Holly Bennett
  • Published Dec 19, 2013
  • Updated Feb 18, 2014 at 11:34 PM UTC
Courtesy photo


In terms of racing the 2014 Commonwealth Games, is that also more about your pride in flying the Bermudian flag?

Yeah, definitely. I’m not there to get a medal, and people understand that. I’m still going to try and do my best, but there’s no pressure, whereas in Kona there was a lot of pressure. I’ve pre-qualified for the Commonwealth Games and there’s no reason not to go. Bermuda gets a real kick out of it, I get to race in a Bermuda singlet and it’s just a special event and a chance to represent Bermuda. I mean it’s a country of 70,000 people, and I get to race countries like Australia, which have maybe 21-22 million. I’m proud to be able to do that. It’s the underdog story a little bit — like I’m going to try to raise my flag as high as theirs. It never happens, but it’s fun trying! And because of that it does take the pressure off me. Nobody expects a little country to do well, so it’s sort of a win-win. If I don’t do well it’s like: At least I performed reasonably. And if I do well it’s like: Wow — nobody expected that! It’s like racing when you’re a junior — without sponsors and without racing for a paycheck, but just for fun. And if you happen to beat some of the older guys they say, “Wow, you’re only 15 and you beat us!” And you can see that they’re excited for you. So it’s at a top level, a major games, but it’s also about taking it back to the roots of why you do it — for fun.

Speaking of fun, your second child, a boy named Walker, is due on Feb. 1. is Walker a family name?

No, not at all! It was just the tamer of all my choices. I wanted Ocean, but Nikki said, “No.” Then I suggested Ocean Walker. “Definitely not!” But I’m excited. I think I get more excited when the baby actually arrives, whereas Nikki and probably any mother gets excited early on because they can feel the baby growing in their belly. She’s been painting the room and nesting. And she’s excited to have a momma’s boy because Savana is a bit of a daddy’s girl. I think I’ll probably have a little more responsibility with a boy, though, which isn’t a bad thing for me. Like as far as taking Savana to the bathroom goes — that’s been more Nikki’s thing. When Savana was maybe two, one day she said, “Mummy, bathroom!” And she stood up and kind of leaned back. We realized then it needed to be more Nikki’s department, because she was imitating me! But I’ll be the one to teach Walker.

RELATED: The Butterfield’s Balance Triathlon And Parenthood

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