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Gomez Plays Cards Close to Chest

Gomez Plays Cards Close to Chest While Reed and Hewitt Have Been Dealt the Hands of Their Lives


Image credit: Mike
Heydon, Tri NZ
Click to enlarge

Image credit: Mike Heydon, Tri NZ


4th April 2008

A full transcript of the press conference is available upon request or by visiting www.triathlon.org.nz

Gomez Plays Cards Close to Chest While Reed and Hewitt Have Been Dealt the Hands of Their Lives

World number one ranked triathlete Javier Gomez is a warm favourite for Sunday’s ITU BG New Plymouth World Cup for a reason, he keeps winning.

In his last fourteen ITU BG World Cup appearances the quietly spoken Spaniard has been on the podium every time and won eight of those races.

Often he has done so with his now trademark surge during the ten kilometre run leg, usually around the four or five kilometre mark. When quizzed at today’s press conference previewing Sunday’s race, he wasn’t prepared to give too much away.

“I am not the only one to beat, a lot of guys are here with chances, the last fourteen races are awesome but it is always hard to win, to be on the podium. I always try to go at 4 or 5km but sometimes I change it but I feel better like that so I continue to use the tactic. But no, it all depends on how I feel on the race, I never know when I will go it all depends on if you feel strong or not, I will see on Sunday.”

Gomez was in great form in victory at Mooloolaba last weekend and will have to contend with a very strong Kiwi contingent, including one very happy local boy in Shane Reed upon hearing of his Olympic selection last night.

“This is the most exciting moment of my life apart from marriage and the birth of my son, I just couldn’t believe it. I was doing some University work on the computer at home when I got the call, I did the thumbs up to Tammy (Wife), she danced down hallway, I then hung up and I did the same dance.”

Upon revealing his candidacy for next season’s ‘Dancing with the Stars’, Reed explained the fulfillment of a lifelong dream.

“It has been a long time coming. I first had the Olympics as a goal at eight years when I was swimmer. The family moved to Aussie for swimming but I have been doing triathlon now for fifteen years, this is my passion. I missed the first two Olympics but to make the third is incredible.”

Reed felt for his friend and competitor Terenzo Bozzone and said he had heard from his closest rival for Beijing.

“Well actually he texted me this morning and said congratulations, we’ll catch up this weekend for a coffee and have a chat about it. It seemed like he was really happy for me which was great.”

Similarly delighted was fellow Kiwi Andrea Hewitt who will also race on Sunday knowing she too has been confirmed for Beijing.

“The Olympics is huge, I had the two selection races, did my best but did not make top five which would have guaranteed selection but last night I got the call to say I had been selected. I was at the airport, waiting for coach John Hellemans, it was a special evening of quiet celebration and phone calls.”

Australian Emma Moffat does not have that luxury however and is taking part on Sunday knowing this is her last chance to impress Australian Olympic selectors, something that she admits can be distracting.

“The Aussie team is definitely a hard team to get on; there are four going for two spots. I am in contention but you have to prove yourself, we have this race and Ishigaki to prove and show what we can do but I’m not going to Ishigaki. I’ve put all my eggs in this basket so I hope I go well. You have race the season with two plans, one Olympic and one non-Olympic.”

Races get underway on Sunday at midday (Elite Women) and 2.30pm (Elite Men) and will bring the curtain down on a weekend full of triathlon activity as New Plymouth hosts the World Tri Festival with events kicking off today with the Weet-Bix Tryathlon for children with close to 1,000 local Taranaki children taking part at Ngamotu Beach.

For further information and all course and event timing and information visit www.triathlon.org.nz or contact:


ENDS

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