Kincardine man on gold-medal team at FireFit World Challenge
By Liz Dadson

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Scott Minty joins Ian VanReenen, John Bain, and Thomas Elliott of Ripley on the Lambton College team which took gold at the 22nd annual Scott FireFit World Challenge in Las Vegas at the end of October

Videos courtesy of Scott Minty

Scott Minty competes against Ian VanReenen in the individual race at the worlds

Scott Minty of Kincardine has struck gold at the Scott FireFit World Challenge, held at the end of October, in Las Vegas.

A graduate of Lambton College, he was on a relay team with Ian VanReenen, John Bain, and Thomas Elliott of Ripley, which won gold over 64 teams from 10 different countries in the world championships.

Minty won bronze in a tandem event with VanReenen, and placed 13th in the individual event.

He and VanReenen have been invited to participate in the NCAA's Cotton Bowl festival with Team Canada, as part of a FireFit demonstration, Jan. 3, 2014, in Arlington, Texas.

Minty has been racing in FireFit challenges for the past five years and loves it.

"This year has been the greatest yet," he says. "I'm proud to be one of the best in the world. I plan to continue competing until I can't do it anymore."

The 34-year-old works at Bruce Power but lives in Sarnia where he has two sons, ages six and four. His parents, Brian and Elaine Minty, live in Kincardine.

He began competing in the FireFit challenge in 2009. That first year, his team qualified for the nationals, and competed at Gaspe, Quebec.

The second year, the team again qualified for nationals which were held in Brampton. To qualify for worlds, the team had to compete at an American regional or win at the national regional, says Minty.

In 2011, he competed with the Bruce Power team which was named the top industrial team. Last year, the team won silver at the nationals in Baie-Comeau, Quebec, and was named the top industrial team again.

The team stated its case for obtaining a wild card spot at the worlds, and was allowed to compete in Myrtle Beach. Minty qualified individually and ended up 13th at the worlds. With a time of 1:34 he was inducted into the "Lion's Den" Hall of Fame.

He admits the relay team event is a bit easier than racing individually because each team member completes part of the race.

This year, Minty competed at the Kitchener FireFit regional as an individual and placed second. At his second regional, in Longueuil, Quebec, he placed fourth.

The Bruce Power team, of which he is a member, competed at the Hamilton regional but didn't place. Minty placed fifth as an individual racer. The team went on to the nationals at Edmonton, Alberta, and placed fourth.

Meanwhile, Minty decided he wanted to go to the worlds in Las Vegas at the end of October. He pleaded his case, and was accepted to go as an individual racer. 

Three weeks before the event, VanReenen asked Minty if he would join him in the tandem race and Minty agreed. He was also invited to join VanReenen's Lambton College team.

In the individual race, VanReenen came in seventh with a time of 1:28, while Minty finished 13th with a time of 1:31.
He and VanReenen went on to win bronze, followed by the team winning gold.

"Once you get to the finals, it's really tiring," says Minty. "The team relay is done by elimination, so you have to keep racing until you're out. We raced team after team, including one from the United States Air Force base.

"Finally, we raced against a team from Horry County, South Carolina, and we beat them and took gold. It felt great."

Minty continues to train with his eye on the gold medal in individual racing at worlds next year. "This year was a good one for me, but I'm competitive; I'm not number one at this so I've still got a ways to go."

He works out with his brother, Matt, who lives in Kincardine and also works at Bruce Power. "We train together on the outdoor track at the Davidson Centre, on the pier, and on the beach," says Minty.


Scott Minty of Kincardine wears the jacket and the medals, and holds the certificates after winning bronze and gold at the Scott FireFit World Challenge in Las Vegas at the end of October

Scott Minty in his gear as he gets ready to race at the worlds
photo courtesy of Scott Minty

His sister, Sarah Bishop, is a teacher; she and her family also live in Kincardine.

A firefighter in Emergency Protective Services at Bruce Power, Minty says the skills he uses in the FireFit challenge are all job-related - they're skills he uses every day at work.

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Monday, December 02, 2013