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Hewitt first Kiwi but misses top five

30th March 2008

For immediate release from Tri NZ

Hewitt Wins the Battle of the Kiwis But Must Wait for Olympic Selection News

Andrea Hewitt won the race of the Kiwis but did not do enough to immediately confirm her nomination for the Beijing Olympics with a 14th place finish at the Mooloolaba ITU BG World Cup today.

If either Hewitt or challenger Nicky Samuels was to earn the third and final spot on the NZ team behind Sam Warriner and Debbie Tanner, they had the hard task of finishing in the top five today, anything less would leave the decision in the hands of the Tri NZ selectors.

Hewitt won the race of the Kiwis by six places and over a minute from Samuels but could not earn the top five finish that would effectively have booked her a ticket to Beijing.

Hewitt was philosophical about that given her form over the past two years.

“Today was just a little too much on the preparation I have been able to do but I did the best I could and was ready to race, just maybe not for the full 10km run distance,” said a disappointed but realistic Hewitt.

“It wasn’t so much the heat that hurt me it was more the hill, I felt it in the legs and couldn’t make up any ground.

“I don’t know what is in the selectors thoughts but given Beijing last year and today were considered the two selection races, I think I have done enough to make the Games. I have no doubt about my ability given a smooth preparation, I will have to wait and see what the announcement is in New Plymouth next week.”

The selectors will meet tonight in Mooloolaba to begin those discussions before forwarding their nomination to the Tri NZ Board before it is then put to the NZOC to ratify. An announcement is expected at the New Plymouth World Cup next weekend.

The race was won by former World Champion Emma Snowsill, a popular home town win for the huge crowd watching in the hot and humid conditions. Snowsill kept Portugal’s Vanessa Fernandes from making history as she chased her 20th World Cup win, something she will no doubt pursue in New Plymouth a week from today.

Another confirmed New Plymouth starter was third in Lisa Norden, the current World U23 Champion from Sweden.

New Zealand world number four Debbie Tanner endured a terrible transition when exiting the swim in touch with the leaders. Her helmet had been moved and a bike shoe had fallen into her gear bag, causing the Beijing bound athlete to have to turn around and go back to transition to find the shoe, costing her valuable time and any chance of staying with the lead group on the bike.

Mooloolaba ITU BG World Cup, Elite Women

1 E. SNOWSILL (AUS) 2:00:44
2 V. FERNANDES (POR) + 0:39
3 L. NORDEN (SWE) + 1:24
4 L. BENNETT (USA) + 1:54
5 A. WHITCOMBE (GBR) + 2:02
6 O. ZAUSAYLOVA (RUS) + 2:07
7 A. SHARP (AUS) + 2:09
8 J. IDE (JPN) + 2:29
9 E. MOFFATT (AUS) + 2:33
10 A. DITTMER (GER) + 2:50
11 D. RYF (SUI) + 3:08
12 F. ABRAM (AUS) + 3:22
13 H. TUCKER (GBR) + 3:24
14 A. HEWITT (NZL) + 3:36
15 E. DAVIS (IRL) + 3:44
16 L. HÜTTHALER (AUT) + 3:56
17 L. BLATCHFORD (GBR) + 4:09
18 K. LANG (GBR) + 4:24
19 L. MENSINK (NED) + 4:30
20 N. SAMUELS (NZL) + 4:43
21 E. DENSHAM (AUS) + 4:58
22 D. TANNER (NZL) + 5:37
23 A. MURUA (ESP) + 5:38
24 M. CZESNIK (POL) + 5:43
25 M. ELLIS (USA) + 5:47
26 M. RABIE (RSA) + 5:50
27 J. SWALLOW (GBR) + 5:53
28 E. DEDERKO (POL) + 5:59
29 Z. SZABO (HUN) + 6:14
30 Y. LIU (CHN) + 6:18
31 A. MONIZ (POR) + 6:27
32 Z. RODRIGUEZ (ESP) + 6:28
33 P. HIDALGO (ESP) + 6:33
34 S. SCHÜTZ (SUI) + 6:46
35 E. WILLIAMSON (NZL) + 7:13

The men’s race is underway at the time of this release being distributed. A separate release will follow at approximately 7.30pm NZT.


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