On a day that saw two ironman world champions racing at Kurnell we saw a great women's race with current world ITU No.3 Lisa Norden go head to head with Lisa Marangon. The only difference between the two lead women was half a minute in the 5km run. Ben Hammond wrapped up the series with a solid win today almost two minutes ahead of his nearest rival.
Norden and Marangon (Pictured left) came out of the water together (as seen in this photo) and kept each other honest on the bike. Both came in to T2 almost together with Norden heading out on the run about 50mtrs ahead. She then put about another 100mtrs on Marangon on the run but at the end of the day there was not much in it. It was a great race from Marangon as she heads towards a year of ITU and short course triathlons.
Lisa Norden heads back to her Canberra base and to coach Darren Smith (where she trains with a crack squad including Dave Matthews).
Great to chat with Lisa Marangon before the race. She was very relaxed and talked about Geelong the week before. She got a very bad stitch in the run which changed the perspective on her result. She swam and rode as strongly as anyone in the race and the run was the difference on paper. Exciting to watch her progress towards Olympic distance glory.
Missing today were a number of open triathletes due to varying reasons. If ever there was a louder call for an open category or pro series this was it. In Sydney's major triathlon series the omission of an open category to showcase our elite talent is glaringly obvious. I heard it today from pretty much all the competing open athletes and also the guys and girls who came down to watch but didn't race today. Triathlon NSW... please bring it back.
Also seen quietly sneaking out of the water was current and two time world ironman championChris 'Macca' McCormack. There were rumours during the week that Macca was going to race at Kurnell. He was swimming for a team.
Michellie Jones raced today to get a feel for where she is at after her winter training. Even though the day was cool at Kurnell Michellie told Trizone after the race that she found the conditions humid. "After training in the USA over the last few months in much colder conditions I really found today a bit warm. I enjoyed the race today and really enjoyed racing as an age grouper.' Michellie is off to Gerringong for a week long training camp and then will head back to the states. Her racing calendar for the next couple of months is packed full and includes some Olympic distance racing before getting in to the longer distance triathlons.
(Michellie Jones pictured left)
Congratulations to Ben Hammond on securing the series after a great performance today. Ben has done a lot of racing this season already and will be heading off to Europe at the end of our season to race for a team over there. Look out for Ben's regular reports from Europe. He will be letting us know how the racing is going for him and the other Australian's racing over there. It will be interesting to get in to the triathlon teams over there.
Travis Shields raced well today with an age group win and third fastest time overall. Sneaking up the finish ladder is Campbell Hanson. Cam is a Kiwi who now runs a successful sports physiotherapy practice on the north shore of Sydney. Amongst many things he looks after many of the top Shute Shield rugby teams and will be touring with the junior Wallabies over winter. This is Cam's third triathlon since 1996. Back then he was a top junior with fellow Kiwi's Bevan Docherty and Kris Gemmel. Cam didn't pursue a career in triathlon when he felt he wouldn't be able to get his 10km run down to 30mins.
Matilda Raynolds was disappointed to not be able to have a crack at Lisa Norden and Lisa Marangon after a mammoth training week which included a huge bike, run and swim session yesterday. Matilda is working toward her next goal race which is two weeks away and didn't want to interrupt her training schedule. She still put in a solid 1:03.
(Sorry Macca not the best picture but Spot and I were too busy talking and you surprised us. You look happy though)
Mick Maroney had a blowout on the run when he popped his calf. Mick said after the race that this was something that happens every few months. Of all the days for me to decide to go for a long ride down to Kurnell and watch the race my number one competitor had a DNF! Benefiting from this today was Alex Frame who manged to get on to the podium.
Euan McNair snuck in to the top ten for the first time with a fast time of 1:00:39. Glad to see he has gotten over his jet lag.
Anthony Parker and Matt Rae showed their class taking out the top two spots in the men's 35-39 age group and finishing in the top ten overall. Darren Quarrell rounded off the top ten places with a very fast 1:00:47 and 1st place in the men's 40-44 age group. Andrew Cross once again used his very fast run to sneak in just ahead of Michellie Jones. More swim squads Andrew!
Special mention to my fellow Balmoral club member and only 70+ athlete Hannelore Paxton who I have seen at a number of races this season. You are very inspirational to all of us.
Great race calling by Matty Harris as always. I have photos of you big guy so don't despair. TheTrizone Nepean photo gallery was especially kind to you.
To analyse these results further click here.
By Karl Hayes