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World Triathlon Festival Set to Kick Off

MEDIA RELEASE
7 November 2006
For immediate release


World Triathlon Festival Set to Kick Off

Hundreds of local and international triathletes are set to compete in the World Triathlon Festival this weekend in New Plymouth.

Triathlon New Zealand Chief Executive Officer, Dave Beeche, said the three day celebration of triathlon offers an event for everyone, from young children through to high performance athletes.

“The festival will kicks off on Friday [10 November] with a Weet-Bix Tryathlon - for 8-14 year olds,” Dave said.

“Saturday marks the start of the first race in the Triathlon New Zealand National Series. Kick starting that event will be the Tri My Sport participation race for any New Zealander over the age of 13 years, with both individual and team entries.

“This will be followed by the Contact Energy New Zealand Cup race for medium to advanced level athletes over the age of 18 years.”

The National Series - part of the World Triathlon Festival in New Plymouth - is a nationwide series of nine events, which will be held over the summer months from November 2006 to March 2007.

“The inaugural National Series, sponsored by Contact Energy, gives all New Zealanders the opportunity to take part in a triathlon regardless of their age, ability or location,” Dave said.

“So far more than 250 people are confirmed to enter the National Series race, a great number for the first event of the series.”

Dave said the conclusion to the World Triathlon Festival will be the New Plymouth BG Triathlon World Cup race for high performance athletes, which will be held on Sunday 12 November.

“Those confirmed to compete in the World Cup race include top internationally ranked elite men Javier Gomez (ESP) and Hunter Kemper (USA),” Dave said.

New Zealand will also be well represented at the event with 15 of the country’s top triathletes confirmed to compete. Included in the kiwi line up are Kris Gemmell, Bevan Docherty, Clark Ellice, Shane Reed, Sam Walker, James Elvery, Blair Jordan, Ben Pulham, and Martin Van Barneveld.

Competing in the elite women’s race will be New Zealanders Sam Warriner, Andrea Hewitt, Nicky Samuels, Evelyn Williamson, Anna Hamilton and Taryn McLeod.


“This will be the second year New Plymouth has hosted an ITU World Cup race. Last year’s race was taken out by Kiwi Bevan Docherty, with Kris Gemmell close behind him.

“It’s great for New Zealand to be part of the ITU circuit, and for our elite athletes to have the opportunity to compete in their home country.”

He said Triathlon is New Zealand’s fastest growing sport with more and more New Zealanders becoming involved at all levels.

“The World Triathlon Festival will be a true celebration of the sport in New Zealand.”

For more information on the World Triathlon Festival, visit www.worldtriathlonfestival.com or www.triathlon.org.nz


ENDS

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