National Sprint Distance Triathlon titles go on the line at Kinloch tomorrow with the U19 and U23 athletes given the opportunity to race shoulder to shoulder with the elites over the 750m swim, 20km bike and 5km run distance.
Not only will this give the younger athletes a chance to match themselves against their older and perhaps better credentialed opponents, but it will make for fascinating racing within their own categories as they are possibly ‘dragged along’ by the others.
One of the more fascinating races will be in the men’s U19 category with Michael Poole (Auckland), Aaron Barclay (Gore), Sam Osborne (Rotorua) and the Franklin brothers Matt and Sam (Auckland) set to battle it out.
Meanwhile Cameron Goldsmid (Wellington) and Tom Davison (Christchurch) will feature strongly in the U23’s.
Davison is on the comeback from injury last year but is pleased with his training of late.
“Training has been pretty good. I have been on the Tri NZ run camp in Wellington and Rotorua with a few run events in the mix so have been doing some big miles on the run side of things.
“This event is a bit of a stepping stone for me as I look to get a few races under the belt before the big ones later in the season. I’m still finding my feet a little after coming back from a run injury.”
Goldsmid shapes as a serious contender in the U23 category. Despite limited experience in the sport, the Wellington triathlete is making big strides with every race.
“Training is going really well for me. I’m still constantly learning and improving and loving it as I go. I got into triathlons after stress fractures meant running alone wasn’t really an option and with almost a year in the game now I’m still injury free and healthy so can’t complain.
“I have only tapered a little for Kinloch, but enough to feel fresh on the start line. It will be my first drafting race, so it’s new and exciting. I’m hoping to make the front bunch onto the bike and with no idea what being in a bunch is going to be like; I’m just hoping to stay in it!
“This being the case, it’ll come down to a run and I just want to go out and have a 5km thrash and see what happens. I’m pretty fired up for it after the rookie error of having to go back for my number in Timaru – a mistake which cost me dearly and I’ll never make again.
“Looking at the big picture, Kinloch is just another opportunity to gain some vital experience so I can line up in Wellington as best prepared as I can be. The immediate goal for me is U/23 Elite selection for World Champs 2010. This means the big races are Wellington (Oceania Champs) and Mooloolaba World Cup as these are the selection races. Hopefully I’ll make the cut and then it’s all geared towards September and representing the NZ team as best I can.”
In the women’s Teresa Adam (Auckland) will start a strong favourite in the women’s U23 category as she moves up from the U19 title she second equal in last year.
If the renowned swimmer is fit she can expect to be amongst the elite leaders out of the water, however there is some doubt over the fitness of the 20 year old. Training had been going well for the former Water Polo representative until illness struck a week ago.
“My running is improving and I have been feeling strong on the bike, swimming has been a bit on hold while I have been working on the other two.
“Unfortunately I picked up an infection over anniversary weekend and am on antibiotics and off training for a few days. I am hoping an enforced rest might be a good thing before the race at the weekend – I have to look at it positively. There is however still a question mark over whether I will recover in time.
“I like Kinloch - it is a nice setting, the course is interesting, I’m hoping the water temperature will be high as I would like to have a non wetsuit swim! My approach is to go as hard as I can from go to whoa. At Whangamata I had problems with hydration so I want to try and get that right in this race and practice race day nutrition and routines.”
In other news Ironman star Jo Lawn has confirmed her entry in the Erin Baker standard distance race at Kinloch as the multiple Bonita Ironman NZ winner continues her build up for Taupo. Cameron Brown is entered in the men’s race over the same standard distance, also tomorrow morning.
Previews for the elite men and elite women can be found at www.triathlon.org.nz
Contact Tri Series (incorporating Tri NZ Sprint Nationals)
Sunday 7th February
7.00am – Men, Taupo Standard Triathlon - Erin Baker Award
7.05 am – Women, Taupo Standard Triathlon - Erin Baker Award
7.15 am – Teams, Taupo Standard Triathlon - Erin Baker Award
10:00am Contact Trophy Men
10:05am Contact Trophy Women
10:07am Contact Trophy Teams
11:10am Contact 3:9:3 Men
11:15am Contact 3:9:3 Women
11:17am Contact 3:9:3 Teams
12:30pm Elite/U23/U19 Men
12:35pm Elite/U23/U19 Women
1:50pm Contact 1:2:1
2:30pm Prize Giving