Batemans Bay Ultimate Triathlon weekend will see the worlds Number 3 ranked ITU Olympic Distance triathlete, USA’s Sarah Groff and Sweden’s current national champion Per Wangel along with Linnea Holmertz compete in the Sprint triathlon on the Saturday in preparation for the 2012 opening Sydney ITU race. Groff is based in Canberra currently where she trains under Australian coach Darren Smith. Smith has a crack squad of triathletes and will most likely have 5 racing at the Olympic Games in London later this year.
Per Wangel (20yrs) is the current Swedish national champion and had a career high 3rd in the ITU Continental Cup in USA last year. He raced a Continental Cup last weekend for an 8th place and is currently in the ITU development squad. In 2011 Per claimed the Swedish national title.
Per Wangel is possibly one of the tallest ITU triathlete evers at 196cm. Prior to taking up the sport of triathlon Wangel was an international class cross country skier. This will have given him a massive engine and a set of lungs to go with it.
Also racing the sprint is Linnea Holmertz from Sweden who finished 10th at Mooloolaba last weekend. Linnea finished 2nd last at the world ITU aquathlon champs in the under 23 division.
Racing the Ultimate on Sunday is Michelle Wu, Nicole Ward (training for Ironman Australia in Port Mac) and Rebbeca Hoschke. Other open females include Monica Dalidowicz and Katherine Baker.
Katherine Baker beat both Rebecca and Nicole at the SiS Port Macquarie half ironman finishing second behind winner Anna Cleaver. Katherine has won world age group ITU titles in 2005 and 2006.
Michelle Wu came second in the Singapore 70.3 two weeks ago in a solid international field. Wu beat home Kate Bevilaqua and amongst other international class females.
Nicole Ward came 6th at Challenge Wanaka this year and was 4th at Ironman Australia last year. For a pro triathlete who works full time Nicole Ward achieves very good results. The swim and run are Nicole’s strengths and this is where she gains the most advantage in the race. Expect to see Nicole leading out of the water.
Monica Dalidowicz was 4th at Husky recently finishing about 12mins behind Rebecca Hoschke.
Rebecca Hoschke won Cairns Half last year and also the recent Huskisson long course.
In the men’s Ultimate we will see Ollie Whistler, Adam Gordon, Chris Dmitrieff, Lindsey Wall and Sam Appleton headling the event.
Whistler and Gordon raced the Singapore 70.3 two weeks ago. Both didn’t perform to their potential so will be looking to make amends this weekend.
This will be a competitive race with ex ITU triathlete Sam Appleton possibly being the equal favourite with Ollie Whistler. The 120km bike leg will be where the race is sorted out. Appleton will most likely lead out of the water and will be the faster of the two lead guys.
Sam Appleton finished less than 3 minutes behind Pete Jacobs for 3rd overall at the recent Huskisson long course. He was only just off Pete Jacobs swim time, rode only 38seconds slower over the 80kms and ran a 1:10 for the 20kms.
Lindsey Wall finished 6th at Husky with a swim / bike combo exactly the same as Appletons but was 6min of the run pace.
The unknown will be Chris Dmitrieff. His run should be one of the best if he has been training seriously with his / swim bike being the only question.