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Travis Shields and Matilda Raynolds win Round one of the TriShave Sydney Triathlon Series at Kurnell – Report and Results



By Karl Hayes 

Race one of the 2010-2011 TriShave Sydney Triathlon Series was won by Travis Shields and Matilda Raynolds. It was a fast race and Travis was as surprised as anyone with his result yesterday. Ben Hammond was 10 seconds back in 2nd with Mick Maroney 3rd and only 3 seconds behind Ben. Matilda Raynolds and Siobhan McCarthy showed that having someone to push you at training has massive benefits and Anel Stewart looks like she is back in the racing game with 3rd female overall. 

I have race reports to post from the top girls and guys. I have most of them in and just need to compile them in to one report. Hopefully by tomorrow morning they will be here.

Full results by age group below.

This is my fourth season of Kurnell triathlons and I think the show of hands for the ‘1st timers’ was the most I have seen. Also we may have had the longest race briefing (We do love Nick but someone tell him the next race starts at 6:45am. You put on a great series Nick so thanks :)). However this was counteracted by a fast swim. So I think we ended up square for the day.

I had a few people say to me after the race to report the swim as ‘favourable tides and and everyone having trained well over winter’. I’ll go with that. Hope you are happy Euan.

The water was not as cold as we expected but was very choppy coming back in which challenged a few.

Hannelore Paxton showed that she is back in to some good form after being sidelined with injury two seasons ago. Hannelore took out the 70+ female category and has been racing a fair bit lately. Hannelore raced in the Sydney Duathlon Series and did the NSW Club Champs as well as other races recently.

Travis Shields is in some good form going in to Busselton this weekend. Even though Kurnell is at the other end of the racing spectrum Travis showed what he is capable of. Mick Maroney is also racing very fast right now. He showed two weeks ago at Penrith that he can mix it with the pros when he raced in the Super Sprint race and came 10th out of 20 in this shoot out.

It was good to see Christelle van Niekerk back racing. Christelle won the Sprint and Long Distance world champs in 2009 for her age group and dabbled with a pro licence last season. She has a big 8 day adventure race coming up in March 2011 in South Africa which is her focus now.

Anel Stewart, who is coached by Adam Radford, is back racing after having a leg injury and also having lost her father recently. Anel is a very quick triathlete and I am sure she will go a lot faster next time at Kurnell (Matilda and Siobhan… take note). Anel has also been dealing with the loss by South Africa to Scotland last weekend. I am sure this affected her training during the week.

It was great to see Holly Ranson take 3rd place in the 18-24 age group. Holly is in Busselton this week for Ironman WA. Holly will be working on the media and communications at Ironman.


Full race reults available by clicking here.

Pos Gender Finish Swim Cycle Run Cat
300 Heidi SWAB 1:18:37 0:12:50 0:41:27 0:24:19 F 14-17
356 Brianna POLSON 1:23:24 0:11:14 0:48:04 0:24:05 F 14-17
406 Marina HOUGH 1:34:12 0:13:15 0:55:16 0:25:40 F 14-17
423 Amie O’DONOGHUE 1:39:23 0:12:56 0:55:54 0:30:33 F 14-17
17 Matilda RAYNOLDS 1:00:56 0:09:36 0:32:40 0:18:39 F 18-24
21 Siobhan MCCARTHY 1:01:12 0:09:38 0:34:01 0:17:32 F 18-24
107 Holly RANSON 1:08:24 0:11:06 0:38:00 0:19:18 F 18-24
195 Tamara COX 1:12:57 0:12:36 0:40:19 0:20:01 F 18-24
229 Eliza DULSON 1:14:27 0:13:29 0:39:36 0:21:22 F 18-24
249 Rebecca CAMPBELL 1:15:34 0:13:01 0:38:16 0:24:16 F 18-24
346 Michelle BEATON 1:22:01 0:14:34 0:43:38 0:23:48 F 18-24
379 Vanessa POLITO 1:27:06 0:15:45 0:45:11 0:26:10 F 18-24
404 Nicole MARSHALL 1:32:15 0:15:51 0:48:38 0:27:44 F 18-24
405 Isabella STREET 1:33:16 0:17:05 0:51:39 0:24:31 F 18-24
417 Amy GREENAWAY 1:36:39 0:14:45 0:55:15 0:26:39 F 18-24
418 Hannah IRELAND 1:36:51 0:16:57 0:54:56 0:24:56 F 18-24
68 Clara BROWN 1:05:05 0:11:19 0:34:57 0:18:48 F 25-29
79 Trudi BECK 1:06:14 0:10:39 0:35:08 0:20:26 F 25-29
113 Katie GALLOP 1:08:46 0:09:45 0:37:01 0:21:59 F 25-29
199 Lauren ATLEE 1:12:59 0:12:25 0:38:15 0:22:18 F 25-29
224 Sara WOODS 1:14:02 0:12:18 0:39:08 0:22:36 F 25-29
225 Jacqueline LEVICK 1:14:07 0:12:39 0:39:01 0:22:26 F 25-29
270 Kate CONNOR 1:16:25 0:13:12 0:41:07 0:22:04 F 25-29
293 Cassandra BORDIN 1:18:15 0:11:10 0:41:11 0:25:53 F 25-29
294 Kelley TESSIER 1:18:15 0:11:15 0:41:29 0:25:31 F 25-29
297 Peta LEACH 1:18:21 0:14:41 0:42:13 0:21:27 F 25-29
321 Bronwyn NEESON 1:19:41 0:14:31 0:41:32 0:23:38 F 25-29
332 Nicole WHITE 1:20:35 0:13:07 0:42:15 0:25:12 F 25-29
333 Karen GRUNDY 1:20:47 0:12:25 0:43:34 0:24:48 F 25-29
357 Angela DOBBIN 1:23:43 0:13:39 0:44:23 0:25:40 F 25-29
368 Michelle CASSIDY 1:25:02 0:13:18 0:45:06 0:26:38 F 25-29
383 Katrina STACE 1:27:48 0:19:01 0:42:53 0:25:54 F 25-29
395 Andreane LAURIN 1:30:01 0:14:06 0:49:07 0:26:47 F 25-29
413 Shelby HOOD 1:36:09 0:14:11 0:52:41 0:29:16 F 25-29
35 Anel STEWART 1:02:22 0:09:07 0:33:24 0:19:49 F 30-34
76 Monica JUHART 1:06:00 0:10:44 0:36:01 0:19:14 F 30-34
97 Anna WOODROW 1:07:35 0:10:15 0:36:20 0:20:59 F 30-34
109 Millie HERZBERG 1:08:39 0:11:14 0:35:40 0:21:44 F 30-34
125 Penelope SINTON 1:09:34 0:10:53 0:38:40 0:20:01 F 30-34
165 Sarah DICK 1:11:07 0:09:54 0:37:31 0:23:41 F 30-34
175 Jane SHIELDS 1:11:48 0:12:25 0:38:34 0:20:48 F 30-34
221 Faith GERAGHTY 1:13:59 0:13:38 0:40:10 0:20:11 F 30-34
223 Lisa BOWMAN 1:14:00 0:13:37 0:40:14 0:20:08 F 30-34
230 Sonya VAN BEEK 1:14:31 0:13:11 0:40:18 0:21:01 F 30-34
243 Rowena MOORE 1:15:22 0:12:13 0:40:52 0:22:15 F 30-34
250 Penny CSESZKO 1:15:38 0:11:28 0:40:29 0:23:41 F 30-34
253 Belinda FONG 1:15:49 0:13:04 0:40:24 0:22:20 F 30-34
260 Leanne PRATT 1:16:07 0:11:13 0:39:38 0:25:16 F 30-34
261 Jo BRIGHT 1:16:08 0:12:53 0:37:59 0:25:15 F 30-34
280 Kristy WALKER 1:17:20 0:12:45 0:41:51 0:22:43 F 30-34
290 Amy DUTCH 1:18:10 0:12:34 0:40:18 0:25:18 F 30-34
336 Erica FISHER 1:20:57 0:13:57 0:42:28 0:24:31 F 30-34
352 Danielle RADNIDGE 1:23:06 0:13:43 0:42:28 0:26:54 F 30-34
353 Yuen SU 1:23:12 0:15:51 0:44:33 0:22:48 F 30-34
354 Michelle FERRIS 1:23:13 0:18:28 0:37:24 0:27:20 F 30-34
361 Toni SINCLAIR 1:24:17 0:14:29 0:43:15 0:26:32 F 30-34
364 Kathryn DUNKLEY 1:24:30 0:14:53 0:43:36 0:26:00 F 30-34
365 Tatum MURPHY 1:24:38 0:14:02 0:47:03 0:23:32 F 30-34
366 Rachael PERIDIS 1:24:52 0:14:58 0:44:51 0:25:03 F 30-34
374 Suzanne HAYDEN 1:26:21 0:15:58 0:44:22 0:25:59 F 30-34
380 Lisa HANLEY 1:27:09 0:14:51 0:44:41 0:27:37 F 30-34
384 Catherine BAILEY 1:27:53 0:16:04 0:44:23 0:27:26 F 30-34
386 Helen PLANT 1:28:12 0:13:02 0:44:39 0:30:30 F 30-34
388 Charlene DAMPIER 1:28:22 0:14:09 0:45:07 0:29:05 F 30-34
389 Mel ANDERS 1:28:32 0:14:21 0:45:32 0:28:39 F 30-34
396 Amy HAYDEN 1:30:06 0:15:05 0:47:32 0:27:29 F 30-34
400 Emma FINNERTY 1:30:29 0:12:38 0:47:19 0:30:31 F 30-34
42 Christelle VAN NIEKERK 1:03:00 0:09:48 0:33:25 0:19:45 F 35-39
74 Dayna DAVIDSON 1:05:49 0:10:49 0:35:53 0:19:07 F 35-39
128 Katherine MORRIS 1:09:42 0:12:25 0:35:41 0:21:35 F 35-39
153 Melanie HEADLEY 1:10:36 0:11:21 0:38:49 0:20:25 F 35-39
168 Joanne HORNIMAN 1:11:22 0:11:49 0:37:18 0:22:13 F 35-39
189 Niki HALE 1:12:46 0:12:11 0:36:54 0:23:39 F 35-39
201 Sarah KOEN 1:13:02 0:10:14 0:38:51 0:23:56 F 35-39
248 Liz SYMMONS 1:15:34 0:12:31 0:41:12 0:21:50 F 35-39
265 Nicole POLLITT 1:16:18 0:12:49 0:42:15 0:21:12 F 35-39
268 Louise HARVEY 1:16:19 0:12:48 0:40:47 0:22:43 F 35-39
269 Nicole COX 1:16:24 0:12:47 0:41:01 0:22:35 F 35-39
298 Susan STANTON 1:18:35 0:11:20 0:42:10 0:25:04 F 35-39
301 Corinne RAPP 1:18:38 0:13:32 0:42:30 0:22:36 F 35-39
310 Kelli FISCHER 1:19:03 0:15:07 0:40:35 0:23:21 F 35-39
312 Emma BROWN 1:19:07 0:13:53 0:41:40 0:23:33 F 35-39
371 Jenny BROWN 1:25:33 0:15:11 0:43:01 0:27:21 F 35-39
382 Kim MASON 1:27:35 0:13:24 0:43:00 0:31:10 F 35-39
414 Megan ROSS 1:36:13 0:16:42 0:52:04 0:27:26 F 35-39
430 Justine SHEARD 1:50:03 0:15:12 0:55:41 0:39:09 F 35-39
144 Tracey SPINDLER 1:10:17 0:11:17 0:37:04 0:21:55 F 40-44 
170 Michele PEZZUTTI 1:11:29 0:11:40 0:36:58 0:22:51 F 40-44 
186 Lucy SKINNER 1:12:38 0:12:24 0:39:29 0:20:44 F 40-44 
234 Lyndell VAN DE WALLE 1:14:38 0:13:12 0:39:17 0:22:08 F 40-44 
281 Penny NOLTON 1:17:26 0:14:22 0:39:18 0:23:45 F 40-44 
292 Leslie CLERKE 1:18:14 0:12:42 0:40:51 0:24:40 F 40-44 
311 Kylie THOMAS 1:19:05 0:12:53 0:42:20 0:23:51 F 40-44 
320 Emma COWLEY 1:19:31 0:14:26 0:42:55 0:22:09 F 40-44 
322 Robyn WALKER 1:19:51 0:11:33 0:40:44

Karl is a keen age group triathlete who races more than he trains. Good life balance! Karl works in the media industry in Australia and is passionate about the sport of triathlon.


News & Racing

Major League Triathlon Adds 3rd International Team



Major League Triathlon, the first and only professional triathlon league in North America, has announced a 9th team (3rd International franchise) for the 2018 season. For the first time in the league’s history, a National team from Mexico will participate in MLT.

The new franchise, dubbed, Guardianes de Guadalajara (Guadalajara Guardians), will consist of many of the top Mexican National Team athletes. The team will include:

Pro Men

  • Crisanto Grajales
  • Irving Perez
  • Abraham Rodriguez
  • Aram Peñaflor
  • Leonardo Saucedo

Pro Women

  • Cecilia Perez
  • Vanesa de La Torre
  • Adriana Carreño
  • Andrea Gutierrez
  • Lizeth Rueda

“We are thrilled to welcome this team to Major League Triathlon.” Said Daniel Cassidy, CEO of Major League Triathlon. “Triathlon Mexico and their athletes have established themselves as one of the world’s top federations leading up to Tokyo 2020. We are extremely excited to continue to increase the level of competition and give our athletes the opportunity to race Mixed Team Relay at the highest level possible. “

Major League Triathlon will host nine professional teams and will host many of the World’s best elite triathletes including international teams from Australia, Canada, and Mexico. MLT will host four events, making stops in: Atlantic City, Vail Valley, Tempe and Charlotte. The third year league specializes in the Mixed Team Relay format of racing, which will make its debut at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics. At every event, each athlete will swim 300 meters, bike four miles and run one mile, one at a time, before tagging their next teammate. The first team to have all four athletes cross the finish line will win.

Guardianes de Guadalajara

Guardianes de Guadalajara is the only Mexican/Latin-American Team competing in Major League Triathlon. They represent the City of Guadalajara. The Guardianes de Guadalajara will feature experienced triathletes like Olympians: Crisanto Grajales (London 2012 and Rio 2016), Irving Pérez (Río 2016), Cecilia Pérez (Río 2016) and the future of the extremely strong Mexican National Team including: Junior and U23 triathletes like Vanesa de la Torre, Abraham Rodriguez and Aram Peñaflor.

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News & Racing

Rudy Project Launches Project Podium for Age Group Athletes



Rudy Project North America, the exclusive distributor of Italian-made endurance sports gear, and the most worn helmet at Kona 7 times in a row is launching Project Podium, an initiative that rewards North America’s fastest age group triathletes with award-winning performance Rudy Project eyewear and helmets. All age group racers that win their age group in any sanctioned long distance triathlon in the United States and Canada are eligible to receive a free, top-of-the-line Rudy Project Boost 01 road aero helmet and a pair of Tralyx sunglasses. Winners will also be featured on Rudy Project’s website and lauded on social media as the top long-distance age group triathletes on the continent.

“A full-distance, 140 miles plus race is nothing to sneeze at, and attempting one is a feat in of itself,” said Paul Craig, Co-CEO and Co-Founder of Rudy Project North America. “To win your age group, to come out on top, is something exceptional, and we want to reward the best, with the best.”

The program is open to all age group triathletes that compete in a sanctioned long distance triathlon race, in Canada or the United States, that is included in Project Podium’s list of eligible races. Athletes must be legal residents of either Canada or the United States in order to be eligible to win. The prize pack being offered is worth up to $625 USD, and triathletes that win their age group can submit their results online for verification at in order to redeem. Athletes will be able to choose from the entire Boost 01 road aero colour line up, which includes Stealth Black and eye-popping Pink Fluo. Rudy Project’s new road aero helmet is quickly becoming an athlete favourite, following wind tunnel testing by ProCycling Magazine that demonstrated the Boost 01 was faster than any competitor helmet tested. To complement their helmet, athletes can also select a frame from the entire award-winning Tralyx family, including the regular Tralyx, Tralyx XL for additional coverage, or the new Tralyx SLIM, designed specifically for athletes with narrower faces. That, coupled with customer-forward warranties like Rudy Project’s 6 Year Crash Replacement Guarantee and Lifetime Replacement Lens Guarantee, make this an unbeatable prize package for the age grouper at the top of their game.

“Rudy Project is simply the best,” said Paul Craig. “We’re choosing to celebrate athletes who power the sport – the age group athlete and rewarding those that get to the top, the pinnacle of success. It may seem too good to be true, but we’re serious. If you win your age group in one of our listed races, we want to give you a helmet and sunglasses. If that extra push is all it takes to motivate someone to train a little harder, run a little faster down the chute toward the finish line, then we’ve done our job.”

Winning athletes can submit their information and race results for verification online. Athletes that won their age group in any 2018 full distance triathlon prior to the announcement of the program are also eligible to redeem retroactively. Full terms and conditions of the initiative can be found online, as well as a full list of eligible races. The program will run until December 2018.

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Taiwan added to XTERRA World Tour on 29-30 September at Kenting National Park



XTERRA World Tour today announced the inaugural XTERRA Taiwan off-road triathlon and accompanying sports festival to be held September 29-30, 2018 at Kenting National Park.

Events include an XTERRA championship distance event, an “Xticer” beginner distance off-road triathlon, 5, 10 and 21-kilometre trail runs.

“We are thrilled to bring XTERRA to the people of Taiwan and introduce the sport and lifestyle to athletes of all ages and skill levels,” said Brian Wei, Vice President of Marketing. “We also look forward to having XTERRA Tribe members from around the world join us in Taiwan to discover a truly remarkable location in Kenting and the fabulous culture and community that is found here.”

Kenting is on the southern tip of Taiwan and famous for its warm, turquoise water and white-sand beaches that give way to magnificent mountains and natural reserves.

The main event starts with a one-mile swim at Little Bay beach with a short run in between two-laps. The swim-to-bike transition is at the fascinating Kenting Youth Activity Center, which is comprised of 17 different styles of old-world buildings and is a tourist destination all by itself. Then, the 26-kilometer mountain bike course takes competitors from coastal terrain to rocky riverbeds to uncharted territory high atop MenMaLou mountain. And the final test of endurance is a 10-kilometer trail run through the tranquil and “enchanted forest” of Chihniuling, considered one of the eight wonders of Hengchun.

The XTERRA Taiwan Championship event offers an elite prize purse of $15,000 USD split among the top seven men and women and also 49 qualifying spots for amateurs vying to compete at the 2019 XTERRA World Championship race in Maui.

The Xticer tri is a perfect introductory race with a manageable 200m swim, 10km mountain bike and 2km trail run. Relay teams of two-or-three people are encouraged to race in the full distance event.

In addition to the off-road triathlons there is a race for everyone in the family during the 5km, 10km and 21km trail running races. And for the fast runners, a $20,000 NTD (about $700 USD) will be awarded to the top three men and women in the half-marathon distance race.

XTERRA has had a presence in the Asia-Pacific region since 2000 and hosts events in Australia, New Zealand, Malaysia, Thailand, the Philippines, Japan, Korea, Tahiti, and New Caledonia, however, this is its first foray into the burgeoning endurance sports market of Taiwan,” said Janet Clark, President of XTERRA World Tour.

Nico Lebrun, the XTERRA European director, helped design the course. He also returned to Taiwan to host local coaching clinics to help leaders in the area teach the various disciplines of XTERRA as well as champion the XTERRA motto to “Live More” through a healthy, active, outdoor lifestyle.

“After two trips to Kenting I can tell you it’s a beautiful place, and the perfect location for XTERRA,” said Lebrun, who is also part of the organizing committee producing the event. “If you like hot weather, warm water, fresh local food, and strong culture, you will love it here.”

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News & Racing

Drama and excitement at Challenge Denmark



Andreas Dreitz and Pernille Thalund each took home a convincing victory in Saturday’s Challenge Herning. After a non-wetsuit swim the athletes had to conquer an unusually hot summer day, which delivered as well drama as excitement.

For a while favourite, Camilla Pedersen (DK) looked like a sure winner. The former elite swimmer came first out of the water after only 25:56 minutes, with two minutes down to fellow dane Pernille Thalund. But almost halfway through the bike course, Thalund took the lead and kept it all the way to the finish line. Laura Siddall (GB) fought her way up from being 9th to second place, well three minutes after Thalund. 18 minutes later Frankie Sanjana (GB) crossed the finish line.

Meanwhile, Camilla Pedersen fought a brave but brutal battle with her stomach which refused to hold anything down in the heat. It goes without saying that it was an unfair match, and halfway through the course, she chose to pull herself out of the race.

Dreitz does it again

Among the men, Swedish favorite Jesper Svensson was first out off the water with Daniel Bækkegaard right behind him. But racing across the Danish heath, the ranks were turned upside down. Ultimately, the former Challenge Denmark winner Andi Dreitz took the lead, after which Danes Matthias Lyngsø Petersen and Kristian Hindkjær succeeded in overtaking Svensson.

Last year’s winner, Anders “Hightower” Christensen finished fifth.

The weather as X factor

One should never complain about the fabulous, Danish summer weather. But in the triathlon context, the heat was grueling.For the pros, the water temperature of 23.1 degrees meant a non wetsuit swim, which was a draw back for the heavier athletes.The vast majority of the age groupers athletes chose to swim in their wetsuits.

The almost non-existent wind made cycling really fast. But as the athletes went out running, the combination of heat, sun and no wind meant an excruciatingly hard run through Herning’s otherwise festive streets.

“The weather is always the x-factor in triathlon. It’s something you can not predict or change – and that can make a huge difference in either direction. But it’s the same for everyone, and that’s something that makes it exciting”, says race director Claus Vesterby.

All about the experience

It is a very proud and happy race director, Claus Vesterby, who can close and shut Challenge Herning this evening: “We had a phenomenal pro field with some amazing athletes and personalities. It’s amazing to notice how the Challenge Family spirit influenced the day among both pro and age group athletes. All the amateur athletes at all levels who struggled to exceed their own expectations and have a party with their sport, never seize to amaze me. They are just as important to us as the professionals, and it’s fascinating to see the breadth of our sport. I am proud of that,” says Claus Vesterby:

“Everyone is here to do their best, but first and foremost they come to get a great experience. And there’s no doubt they’ve got that today – and so have I.It’s a pleasure to feel how the city of Herning has taken the Challenge in and really backs us up and creates a party around the athletes. That means so unbelievably much. So we are already looking forward to making an even more amazing event next year.”



  1. Andreas Dreiz, D, 3:47:12
  2. Matthias Lyngsø Petersen, DK, 3:51:54
  3. Kristian Hindkjær, DK, 3:57:31


  1. Pernille Thalund, DK, 4:20:55
  2. Laura Siddall, GB 4:24:00 PM
  3. Frankie Sanjana, GB, 4:42:00 PM

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News & Racing

Mark Allen is Final Surge’s New Partner, Spokesperson, and Advisor for Triathlon



Mark Allen, 6-time IRONMAN® Triathlon World Champion and “The Greatest Endurance Athlete of All Time” according to ESPN, has teamed up with FinalSurge, the Best Online Training Log according to Triathlete magazine’s June 2018 Issue, to produce a special edition “Mark Allen Coaching” branded training program for triathlon. Allen will also serve as a spokesperson and advisor for Final Surge triathlon projects.

“His accomplishments as an endurance athlete are legendary, but we were even more blown away with his depth of knowledge, experience, and innovations in coaching,” said Bob Butler, IRONMAN Certified Coach and COO of Final Surge. “Having Mark Allen on the team represents an extraordinary opportunity for us to use his unparalleled athletic experience and coaching insights to build on our recent honor as “Best Online Training Log.”

“When the opportunity arose to work with Final Surge I recognized that the technology created by their team had finally reached a level of sophistication and ease of use that would be a perfect match for my coaching theories,” said Allen. “Final Surge has developed the best mobile applications for online coaches in all endurance sports, and I am proud to be a part of their team as they continue to innovate and grow.”

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Rio Olympian Ryan Bailie moves to 6th on the WTS World Rankings



It was a case of survival of the fittest in yesterday’s energy-sapping World Triathlon Series Leeds round with Australia’s Rio Olympian, “Mr Consistent” Ryan Bailie the best of the Aussies, moving up the ITU WTS World Rankings to sixth after his 10th place finish.

His Olympic teammate Aaron Royle, after his sterling performance to put Australia in the medal hunt in Thursday’s WTS World Triathlon Mixed Relay, faded on the 10km run to finish 13th.

The tough Olympic distance Leeds course, with its immediate hill climb off the 1500m swim and then the 12.5km ride into the city before the tight technical street laps over 27.5km, proved unforgiving for some.

There were some casualties on the bike and then more on the run – including the likes of Leeds local hero and two-time Olympic medallist Jonny Brownlee.

Commonwealth Games silver medallist Jake Birtwhistle, third on the rankings going into Leeds, has dropped to seventh after his 22nd placing in a race which also saw his Commonwealth Games teammate Luke Willian 32nd and Marcel Walkington 36th.

“But there were some positives up until that point and in recent times they have been few and far between so I’ll take it. Bit of ‘R&R’ for a few days and then back into it.”

Royle has jumped four places on the WTS rankings to 17th to 13 to give Australia three in the top 15 after the first five events of a season that will culminate in the 2018 Grand Finale on the Gold Coast (September 12-16).

The next stop will be Hamburg on July 14 and 15; Edmonton (July 27-29) and Montreal (August 25-26) before the Gold Coast final stop.

Defending champion Mario Mola sits on top of the rankings ladder after his second-place finish behind South African Richard Murray yesterday which saw Frenchman Vincent Luis third.

But things didn’t go all Mola’s way as Murray scooted away to South Africa’s first-ever Olympic distance WTS gold.

“I had a beginner’s mistake today,” said Mario Mola. “I jumped on my bike and when I hit the pedal it hit the floor so I had to get down and fix it. Luckily I had a very good swim so I was able to get in the second pack. From then, I just kept working and today the effort paid off. Congratulations to Richard, he was really strong today. I really liked the course, it’s tough but I liked it.”

The Australian women had a frustrating day in the office with Ashleigh Gentle, Natalie Van Coevorden, Charlotte McShane and Gillian Backhouse all falling by the wayside recording DNFs through the 40km bike leg.

Gentle wrote on Twitter: “Out of Leeds after my pre-race swim yesterday. Things went south.

“Stomach bug or food poisoning flattened me. I lined up to give it a go but unfortunately, I felt incredibly weak and couldn’t hardly push any power.”

The race eventually went to local Vicky Holland in a GBR quinella with youngster Georgia Taylor-Brown taking silver and Katie Zaferes (USA) third.

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