MONTHS of intensive training has led six Bathurst athletes to this week’s International Triathlon Union (ITU) World Triathlon Finals on the Gold Coast.
Mark Windsor, Dennis and Jodie Martin, Fran Grady, Terry Roberts and Josh Stapley will be among more than 5,000 of the world’s leading age group triathletes at the event which starts Wednesday and runs through to Sunday.
Qualifying for the event was no easy feat for the Bathurst group who had to earn points throughout the season in a bid to be one of the top 25 finishers in their respective age groups.
Their places in the team were confirmed back in May and it’s given them plenty of time to train hard and keep fit over the winter months.
Jodie (45-49 years) and Dennis (55-59) Martin will contest the sprint distance event on Wednesday, which features a 750 metre swim, 20 kilometre ride and 5km run.
Josh Stapley (20-24), Fran Grady (55-59) and Terry Roberts (55-59) will race as part of Australia’s standard distance team on Sunday over a 1.5km swim, 40km ride and 10km run.
Mark Windsor (55-59) qualified for the sprint and standard races and will take on both events.
Jodie and Dennis Martin have had their share of hurdles to overcome in the run towards the event but they’re excited to wear their national colours.
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“I ended up qualifying in the top three for my age group and that surprised me. I was really happy with that,” Jodie said.
“I haven’t had a good run in the last four weeks. I’ve had a bit of a hip injury and I’ve been cradling that. I’ve still been doing plenty of work on the bike and the swim.
“The positive out of that is that my swim has improved. Over the five kays it will be about gritting the teeth and getting it done.”
Dennis Martin said he’s been guilty of training a touch too hard in the lead up to the race.
“We probably both peaked about eight weeks ago when we both picked up niggling injuries,” he laughed.
“As Jodie said, we’ll get through it but we’re both worried about that run. It’s only five kilometres so we’ll go as hard as we can.
“The temptation seems to be when you’ve got an event like this on that you over-train and that’s probably happened to us in this case.
“We’ll have people coming from all around the world for this but the advantage for those racing for Australia is that they’ve done this race before in February.
“The course will be slightly different but it’s going to be great racing on our home ground.”