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New Plymouth A Great Opportunity For Kiwi Triathletes

21 February 2014

For immediate release from Port Taranaki New Plymouth ITU World Cup Triathlon

New Plymouth A Great Opportunity For Kiwi Triathletes In World Class Fields

New Plymouth will play host to one of the strongest fields assembled for an ITU World Cup Triathlon when the sprint distance event comes to Ngamotu Beach on March 23rd with 6 of the top ten men and 5 of the top ten women on the entry lists released by the ITU, including both current world number one ranked athletes.

The elite start lists have been released by the ITU and such is the demand for both the men’s and women’s events that the waiting lists are long deep on talent. Leading the way is, in the men’s field:

Javier Gomez            Spain             world ranking 1
Mario Mola                Spain             3
Joao Silva                 Portugal         6
Laurent Vidal                        France           7
Sven Reiderer          Switzerland   8
Vincent Luis             France           1
Ryan Sissons           NZL                14
Richard Varga          Slovakia         2
Cameron Good         Australia        21
Dan Wilson               Australia        2
Tony Dodds              NZL                41
And in the women’s field:
Non Stanford                        Great Britain  1
Jodie Stimpson        Great Britain  2
Gwen Jorgensen     USA                4
Andrea Hewitt           NZL                5
Sarah Groff               USA               
Emma Jackson         Australia        11
Nicky Samuels         NZL                14
Vendula Frintova     Czech Rep    22
Barbara Riveros       Chile              28
Vicky Holland           Great  Britain           33

CLICK HERE FOR START LISTS

The quality of the fields is simply outstanding and rivals any race on the ITU World Series circuit, with world number 1 Javier Gomez (ESP) returning to a country he has raced in many times and never lost, having won in 2008 (ITU New Plymouth), 2012 (ITU World Champs Auckland) and 2013 (ITU World Series Auckland) as well as the 2003 ITU U23 World Champs in Queenstown.

Tri NZ High Performance Director Graeme Maw says it is a positive reflection on New Zealand triathlon both as a training base and as a genuine challenge for the Kiwis in their own backyard.

“The fields will be very strong in New Plymouth for a race that plays an integral part in a strong series of races in Australia and New Zealand.  With Kinloch, Pegasus (both .kiwi Tri Series events), Devonport (Tasmania) and now New Plymouth all bringing international fields, we have a real portfolio of high ranking, competitive events in our own region. New Plymouth as an ITU World Cup Sprint is of course a great race in its own right, presenting a stretch for our emerging talent and ideal preparation for our top athletes for the opening ITU World Series event in Auckland two weeks later.”

While Maw highlighted the presence of leading New Zealanders Andrea Hewitt, Nicky Samuels, Ryan Sissons, and Tony Dodds, he says New Plymouth and events of a similar nature are equally a chance for the next generation of athletes to put their hand up for further recognition.

“This is a great test for our emerging athletes. It’s no secret that last year we struggled to compete at U23 level, and races such as this give an ideal opportunity for those aspiring athletes to put numbers on the board. We are delighted there is opportunity for those who are starting to prove to be competitive to demonstrate their progress and commitment to the sport in the highest quality race, right here on home soil.”

Maw says the athletes must look to take these opportunities while they are here and show some form in top company.

“We have seen the potential beginning to emerge in our youth ranks in recent months and as we build on our culture within the Tri NZ HP squads there is an increasing understanding of what it takes to be consistent on the world stage, to truly become an elite athlete. New Plymouth presents a wonderful chance for a number of athletes to shine, each with their own objectives in mind relative to the stage of their development.”

Indeed the pursuit of world class racing opportunities right here in New Zealand (and in Australia) is part of the Tri NZ HP 2020 strategy to give athletes exposure to that experience and the chance to grow and develop without having to travel to the other side of the world.

Clearly there are spin offs for the local and national economy too, with increased visitors to New Zealand, increased bed nights and economic benefits to the community through increased spending as athletes and teams base themselves in New Zealand to train and/or race during our summer.

The event is also providing opportunities for triathletes of all abilities and ages to participate on the Sunday morning in a range of short distance events before then enjoying the world class spectacle of the elite races from midday (women) and2.30pm (men).

Tri NZ HP Squad members gaining a start in the elite ITU New Plymouth World Cup Sprint races on March 23are:
Elite Women
Andrea Hewitt           Christchurch             world ranking 5
Nicky Samuels         Wanaka                     14
Sophie Corbidge      Auckland                   *U23 athlete
Maddie Dillon           Auckland                   *U23 athlete
Mikayla Nielsen       Waikato                      *U23 athlete
Elite Men
Ryan Sissons           Auckland                   14
Tony Dodds              Wanaka                     41
Plus other NZers
Rebecca Clarke       Auckland
Anneke Jenkins       Tauranga
Fiona Crombie         Christchurch
Rebecca Kingsford  Tirau
Laura Wood              Christchurch
Bryce McMaster        Australian based
Martin van Barneveld          Wellington

Port Taranaki New Plymouth ITU World Cup Triathlon
New Plymouth
Sunday March 23
rd
7.30am           Corporate and Age Group racing starts
Midday           Elite Women, ITU World Cup
2.30pm           Elite Men, ITU World Cup

For further information monitor the website: www.itunewplymouthtriathlon.co.nz 

ENDS

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