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Elites Set to Race Where Lance Armstrong Soon Will

Maddy Brunton
winning in Rotorua in 2009 attached, credit: Mike
Heydon
Maddy Brunton winning in Rotorua in 2009 attached, credit: Mike Heydon


25th November 2010

For immediate release from Triathlon New Zealand, for further information visit www.triathlon.org.nz

Elites Set to Race Where Lance Armstrong Soon Will

Triathlon in Rotorua just took on a whole new meaning with news earlier this week that Lance Armstrong will compete at the Rotorua Multisport Festival in late January next year. But this weekend participants from all backgrounds will have the chance to test themselves on the same roads, same running track and same Blue Lake water with the opening round of the Contact Tri Series.

Amongst the many different race distances on offer, it is the standard distance Contact Trophy event that has attracted the majority of elite athletes and it is looming as a battle between youth and experience in both men’s and women’s fields.

In the men’s Callum Millward (Auckland) and Mark Bowstead (Glenbrook) are far from ‘veterans’ but will feel the pressure from athletes some years their juniors in the likes of Cameron Goldsmid (Wellington) who was second last year and Sam Franklin (Auckland). Both Millward and Bowstead are more attuned to the longer distance events these days but that strength base might prove enough over a testing standard distance course on Sunday.

In the women’s race it is again the future of the sport against those who have been around for a little while already. Teenager Maddy Brunton (Waikato) already knows what it is to win at Rotorua with a victory to her name in 2009 but she won’t have it all her own way with another former Contact Tri Series champion Janine Simpson (Tauranga) lining up, as is former high performance squad member Sarah Bryant (Dunedin) who finished third last year.

Triathlon New Zealand Assistant Coach Stephen Sheldrake rates Brunton highly after being able to analyse her fitness at the Tri NZ High Performance Camp in Christchurch this week.

“Maddy will enjoy this course and she is in solid form. She is in our development squad and has just recently been carded so is in camp with us this week in Christchurch before heading to Rotorua on Friday to prepare for Sunday’s race. Maddy has won in Rotorua previously and will be the likely favourite once again this weekend with that knowledge of the course but also her current form, I rode with her the other day and she is strong at this early stage of our season.”

Brunton is looking forward to Sunday and a challenging course to start her season.

“I'm looking forward to racing on Sunday, Rotorua is a good way to kick of the season with a fairly challenging course and an Olympic distance race. It will be a good chance to see where things are at. In terms of training I have been clocking up the miles the past few weeks so it will be a good hit out to see what sort of form I am in.
“Over the summer the plan is to race, race, race! You name it I will be there! I’m taking in part in the most of the Contact Tri Series- with Takapuna and Wellington being key events.”

Sheldrake also rates both Franklin and Goldsmid, although both are currently outside the Tri NZ high performance squads.

Cameron shows all the right numbers in training but to be fair is yet to convert that all into a race on the one day. He may not be in our high performance programme currently but we certainly know who he is and we keep an eye on his progress, it will be interesting to see how he goes.

“Sam is the older of the two Franklin boys and he is another going well at the moment. He ran well at the Barry Curtis 10km road champs and is a good bike rider so Rotorua will suit him. He has been in our youth academy in the past and is another to keep an eye on. The step up to standard distance will be a challenge for him as he is so new to that distance but he has plenty ability.”

Events on Sunday also feature Contact 1:2:1 for children, Contact 3:9:3 for beginners and a sprint distance race which has also attracted a strong field. Also lining up on Sunday will be a host of Duathletes competing for places at next year’s World Championships.

The beginner and shorter events are notable for the change to a flat easy course making for a great introduction to the sport for first timers, or those who have taken time out from triathlon.

Contact Tri Series Rotorua
Sunday 28 November
www.triseries.co.nz
Events (team categories available in all distances except 1:2:1 and Duathlon):

Registration Blue Lake 7am
Sprint
Men 8:00am
Women 8:03am
Teams 8:04am

Trophy - Standard
Men 9:15am
Women 9:18am
Teams 9:19am

Duathlon Selection Race
Men and Women 9:30am

Contact 3:9:3
Men 11:45am
Womens 11:46am
Team 11:47am

Contact 1:2:1
Boys 12:45pm
Girls 12:55pm

Prize-Giving 1:30pm approx


ENDS

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