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O’Grady Puts Down a Marker with Defence of Tinman Title

8 December 2013

For immediate release from Triathlon New Zealand, for further information visit

O’Grady Puts Down a Marker with Defence of Tinman Title

Graham O’Grady (Kinloch) defended his Craigs Investment Partners Tinman triathlon title in imperious fashion today, winning comfortably from Kieran McPherson while a new name emerged on the honours role in the women’s race with Leah Stanley equally impressive in her first serious tilt at the sport for the former top level rower in the opening round of the .kiwi Tri Series.

O’Grady was in control from the start in the 25th year and 22nd running of the traditional season opener and the first event in the .kiwi Tri Series at Mount Maunganui as he prepares for the Taupo Half and then the defence of his Port of Tauranga Half title in January.

“That was my first race of the season and is a good gauge, it is good to come back and defend the title. Conditions were tough, I flew out on the bike but coming back it was a bit of a slog, I hard to work hard into the wind to put some time into them on the ride. I then settled into a comfortable pace and finished off well today, it was a good start that has me on track for a good summer.

“I am racing Taupo next weekend but the Port of Tauranga Half is the big one, winning this year, I would love to go back and repeat that result, I will assess things after that as to what races I will do.”

Stanley was a little more of a surprise package, the former rower has only been dabbling in the sport for less tan a year but showed her potential with a consistent performance.

“I am at the end of my first year in the sport, I was in the rowing programme prior to this, I am excited to be back racing again after a long winter. I am from Auckland but have been living in Cambridge and that certainly seems to be the place to be a triathlete these days!

“The race was really good, coming back into the wind on the bike was tough but I managed to get the legs going I actually did this event with my brother and partner last year, I did the run only in about 48 minutes so I am pleased with that today.

“I plan on doing a few more of the .kiwi Tri Series events, as many as I can to get some experience and have some fun.”

Sam Warriner (Whangarei) earlier withdrew towards the end of the run with a troublesome hamstring flaring up early in the 10km run leg after the former Olympian had led through much of the race.

Conditions indeed proved testing on the day, with the wind providing assistance for the triathletes on their way out from transition but making it tough work on the ride back into The Mount. Participants were otherwise treated well, with sunny skies and warm early summer temperatures making for an enjoyable day’s racing.

Earlier in the day the sprint races were dominated by two of the young stars of the sport, with teenagers Tayler Reid (Gisborne) and Jaimee Leader (Palmerston North) taking out the honours as both started the season as they raced most the previous summer – out in front.

The .kiwi Tri Series now moves to Whangamata on January 3rd for the next event in the series, with the popular holiday spot set to attract another large field of participants across a wide range of events from the children’s 1:2:1 to the beginners 3:9:3 and the testing standard distance race that takes athletes in and around the holiday town and onto the beautiful beach for parts of the 10km run.

.kiwi Tri Series
Craigs Investment Partners Tinman
Mount Maunganui

Standard Distance 1500m swim, 40km bike, 10km run
1 Graham O’Grady               Kinloch          2:00:26           
2 Kieran McPherson           Matamata       2:06:05
3 Matt Franklin                     Auckland       2:06:26
1 Leah Stanley                     Cambridge    2:18:00
2 Sarah Backler                   Tauranga       2:22:57
3 Lydia Hale                          Rotorua          2:24:22

Sprint Distance 750m swim, 20km bike, 5km run
1 Tayler Reid                                    Gisborne        1:00:48
2 Liam Ward                          Auckland       1:01:36
3 Matthew Manning                        Auckland1:03:14
1 Jaimee Leader                  Palm Nth       1:08:33
2 Ashleigh Williams                        Auckland       1:11:12
3 Amy Haddon                     Auckland       1:11:43

2013/14 .kiwi Tri Series
Visit for all event information and online entries

Mt Maunganui          Sunday 8th December 2013
Whangamata            Friday 3 January 2014
Takapuna                  Friday 24th & Saturday 25th Jan 2014
Kinloch                      Saturday 1st & Sunday 2nd Feb 2014
Christchurch             Sunday 9th February 2014
Wellington                 Saturday 8 March 2014
Please note: Standard distance national champs in Auckland as part of the ITU World Triathlon Series on April 5/6


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