Danielle McKenzie Withdraws From Nutri-Grain Series In Pursuit Of Olympic Dream
New Zealand’s top Ironwoman has withdrawn from the 2023/2024 Nutri-Grain Ironwoman Series in Australia.
Danielle McKenzie has won the New Zealand Ironwoman five times and has competed in the Nutri-Grain Series for the past eight years.
However, earlier this year, seeking a fresh challenge, she ventured into sprint kayaking, focusing on the K2 category alongside Aimee Fisher, with their eyes set firmly on the 2024 Paris Olympics.
McKenzie said, “It’s been a challenging decision, but I haven’t been able to adequately prepare myself for this summer’s Nutri-Grain Series. There would have also been scheduling conflicts with races crucial to qualifying for the Olympics.”
McKenzie made history as the first Kiwi female to podium at the Nutri-Grain Series, clinching second place in the 2021/2022 series and third place in 2022/2023 series.
Tanya Hamilton, SLSNZ High Performance Sport Manager said, “Of course, we would love to have seen Danielle compete in the Nutri-Grain Series, but we’re equally excited about what the future holds for her. She’s a fantastic ambassador for Lifesaving Sport and shows how valuable our sport pathways are for sister sports. She’s also paving the way for Kiwi women. We hope she’s able to qualify for Paris and are rallying behind her.”
The Nutri-Grain IronMan and IronWoman will span six rounds across three weekends, kicking off at Australia’s Manly Beach on 16 December 2023.
There will be three New Zealand athletes competing in the 2023/2024 Nutri-Grain Series: Olivia Corrin, Cory Taylor, and Joe Collins.