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Hewitt continues her stellar season with a bronze


HEWITT THIRD IN THRILLER AT WORLD SPRINT CHAMPIONSHIP

New Zealand’s Andrea Hewitt continued her stellar season with a bronze medal at the ITU World Sprint Triathlon Championship in Lausanne overnight, losing out in a sprint finish as Barbara Riveros Diaz (Chile) claimed her maiden senior ITU world title and second World Champs Series win with a thrilling come from behind sprint finish.

Riveros Diaz had dropped to fourth coming into the final kilometre, as Australian Emma Jackson looked like she had the race wrapped up ahead of Hewitt and Helen Jenkins. But Riveros Diaz turned on the pace with about 500 metres to go, passed Jenkins and Hewitt and then tackled Jackson. Last year’s Under-23 world champion tried to stick with the pint-sized Chilean star, but couldn’t keep up as she crossed the line in a time of 58 minutes and 35 seconds.

Hewitt described an intense day’s work.

“That was painful the whole way, it was so hard, the swim was really fast and that finish was really intense. The pace was on in the beginning, Ashley Gentle (AUS) pushed the pace in the middle and I just seemed to hang on and then was feeling good and then not so good and just managed to pass Helen at the finish. I was hoping I would catch everyone but third is good, I’m happy with that today.”

Jackson claimed silver on her birthday, while Hewitt overtook Jenkins in the final few hundred metres to claim bronze. Jenkins’ fourth placed finish was enough for her to claim the lead in the overall Dextro Energy Triathlon ITU World Championship Series rankings, meaning that she will wear the No.1 heading into next month’s Beijing Grand Final.

Jenkins effort to finish fourth was even more impressive in Lausanne though given she had led the race from almost start to finish. Another British athlete, Lucy Hall, was first out of the swim and Jenkins was only a few seconds behind, and they had an almost 30 second lead on the main pack. Even after Hall dropped off, Jenkins still raced about half the 20km bike solo, before finally being caught by a pack that included Riveros Diaz, Hewitt and Jackson, as well as Nicola Spirig, Emma Moffatt, Gwen Jorgensen, Emmie Charayron, Lisa Norden and Sarah Groff.

From the start of the run, Jenkins then kept pushing the pace and together with Hewitt, Jackson, Riveros Diaz and Ashleigh Gentle broke to form a leader’s pack of five. That group then lead unchanged for most of the run, before the final one kilometre when Gentle dropped off and it came down to the tussle between Riveros Diaz, Jackson and Hewitt.

Of the other Kiwis, Nicky Samuels finished 22nd and Rebecca Kingsford 53rd while Penny Hayes did not complete the distance.

Overall Jenkins leads the overall Dextro Energy Triathlon Series rankings by 201 points, on 2913, with Riveros Diaz second on 2712. Paula Findlay, who did not race in Lausanne, is in third on 2637 points with Hewitt well in striking distance in fourth on 2636 points. The Dextro Energy Triathlon ITU World Championship Series Grand Final Beijing is on September 10 and 11.

Meanwhile 23 year old Ryan Sissons raced impressively for the men, coming home in 15th place as Jonathan Brownlee took the honours for Great Britain from Javier Gomez (ESP) and his older brother Alistair Brownlee in third. Sissons emerged from the swim and run at a hectic pace in contact with the leaders but couldn’t match the blistering pace set first by Sven Reiderer (SUI) and then Brownlee and Gomez.

Clark Ellice (25th), Tony Dodds (32nd) and James Elvery (40th) also kept pace through the opening two legs before losing time on the 5km run in a race that also doubled as an ITU World Champs Series event, with points counting towards world rankings. Sissons form maintains his current ranking of 22 heading into the Grand Final in Beijing in early September.

The Kiwis will now reassemble for the ITU World Sprint Team Championship on the same course in Lausanne later tonight New Zealand time.

ITU Sprint World Championship
750m swim, 20km bike, 5km run
Elite Women

1 Barbara Riveros Diaz CHI 0:58:35
2 Emma Jackson AUS 0:58:35
3 Andrea Hewitt NZL 0:58:37
Plus
22 Nicky Samuels NZL 1:00:08
53 Rebecca Kingsford NZL 1:04:57
DNF Penny Hayes NZL

Elite Men
1. Jonathan Brownlee GBR 00:52:23
2. Javier Gomez ESP 00:52:27
3. Alistair Brownlee GBR 00:52:38
Plus
15 Ryan Sissons NZL 00:53:09
25 Clark Ellice NZL 00:53:50
32 Tony Dodds NZL 00:54:15
40 James Elvery NZL 00:54:45
55 Martin Van Barneveld NZL 00:55:24

Full results available here: http://www.triathlon.org/results/


ITU World Team Championships
11.45pm Sunday 21st August NZT
Team 1: Andrea Hewitt, Nicky Samuels, Clark Ellice, Tony Dodds
Team 2: Rebecca Kingsford, Penny Hayes, Martin van Barneveld, James Elvery.

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