A BRONZE medal and three top 10 finishes were the result of a tough morning’s work for Jervis Bay triathletes at last Sunday’s Australian Sprint Distance Championships at Elwood in Melbourne.
Huskisson’s Annette Sampson finished third in the 50 to 54 age group, while Vincentia duo Mandy Meredith and Ken Price both finished just outside the medals in fourth place, and Marcus Vowels placed a valiant ninth in the 65 plus age group.
Despite bushfires and over 40 degree temperatures the week before, Elwood turned on a wet, windy morning for the championships.
Sampson got off to a bad start on the swim leg, finishing in 11th place after finding the one-metre choppy conditions tough going.
The bike course was made more challenging by wet roads and strong, gusty winds and competitors were also fighting the wind in the shoreline run.
Sampson worked her way back into the medals with a third place on the bike leg and the fastest run of her age group – 21:07 for the five kilometre course.
Meredith and Price both had the fastest bike times for their age groups finishing the 20 kilometre course in 38:03 and 35:37
For Vowels, racing with the “young guys” in the 65 plus category was a challenge.
He normally races in the more sedate 70 to 74 age group.
But he is hoping his top 10 finish will translate into serious points in his own category as part of the
qualification process for this year’s world championships in Edmonton, Canada.
Sampson and Vowels are part of the strong team of local triathletes signed up to compete in this weekend’s triathlon festival at Huskisson.
Jervis Bay Triathlon Club president, Tony Lim, said the club would be well represented in all races and age groups over the weekend, with some strong performances expected.
Athletes to watch out for include young guns Tim and Kristina O’Shea in the Sprint events on Saturday, and Josh Henry and Bill Stahlhut in the long course on Sunday.
Lim said Jervis Bay would also have a strong female contingent in Sunday’s long course, with Sampson, Katie Winkworth, Kylie Stewart, Paula Luke, Janelle Prout and Erica Smith all entered in the big event.
Lim said Huskisson was a great chance for locals to come along and see what triathlon was all about – and of course to cheer on the Jervis Bay competitors in
their distinctive blue and grey