Jeff Dorrill, third from the left, is pictured with some fellow members of the University of Alabama triathlon team at the Rocketman Triathlon in Huntsville, Alabama, in August 2016. (Courtesy photo)
Jeff Dorrill does not fit the image of a staid, corporate tax lawyer. The 55-year-old Haynes and Boone partner, who ran the Boston Marathon earlier this week, will compete in the 2017 USA Collegiate Club National Triathlon Championships in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, this weekend.
He will be the second-oldest athlete ever to compete in the national championships.
Dorrill is competing against athletes half his age as a member of the University of Alabama’s triathlon club team. He qualifies for the team because he is earning an online master’s degree in human environmental sciences from the University of Alabama. And he qualified for the championships because he competed in the Rocketman Triathlon last August in Huntsville, Alabama, where he finished with the fastest time on his team.
Originally a long-distance runner, Dorrill said he started doing triathlons about six years ago because he had been dealing with injuries from running every day. Once he added swimming and cycling to his training routine, his injuries stopped and he got hooked on triathlons, which have swimming, biking and running segments. This weekend, he will swim nearly a mile, cycle 24.8 miles and run 6.2 miles.
The Dallas-based partner said he has traveled to many places, including China, Australia, Spain and Canada, to compete in triathlons. But he’s particularly excited about going to Alabama for the collegiate championships because he’s doing an Olympic-distance triathlon on Saturday and also his first-ever “draft-legal” race on Friday. Draft-legal means the cyclists on a team can work together and draft off of each other.
Dorrill, who has practiced at Haynes and Boone for nine years, said the firm is very supportive of his athletics. “They want you to pursue your passion,” he said.
Having just run the Boston Marathon on April 17, which he ran in a little over 3 hours and 25 minutes, means competing in the triathlon won’t be easy. But Dorrill said even if he weren’t still recovering from that 26.2-mile race, he probably would finish in the middle of the pack of the 1,000 athletes at the championships.
Still, not bad for a 55-year-old tax lawyer.
“Triathlons have opened up a whole world to me,” Dorrill said.