A very solid domestic field will take to hallowed grounds in Forster tomorrow to welcome the Challenge Family back to Australian shores and compete for a share in one of the best prize purses on offer this season.  Forster will host the first of three Challenge Family races in Australia this season, with Melbourne and Bateman’s Bay to follow in early 2014. Some 800 athletes will be taking part in the inaugural half-ironman distance Challenge race here in Forster, highlighted by some of Australian triathlon’s biggest names.

Tim Berkel  - Photo credit: Barry Alsop/Eyes Wide Open Images
Tim Berkel – Photo credit: Barry Alsop/Eyes Wide Open Images

Tim Berkel and Tim Reed are the favourites in the men’s race, after Joey Lampe and Clayton Fettell pulled out. Reed will be hungry for a big performance after a mechanical ended his day at Ironman 70.3 Mandurah. Berkel finished second in Manduah behind the red-hot Terenzo Bozzone, proving that he is in solid form at the moment.

David Mainwaring is also in good touch, having topped four-time champ Matty White on his home turf at the Murray Man triathlon earlier this month with a handy 1:11 run over the 20km leg. Kiwi Dylan McNeice will also be one to watch. McNeice found excellent long-course form earlier this year with big wins at Challenge Wanaka and Challenge Taiwan. After some learning experiences since on the Challenge circuit, McNiece is keen to end the year where he started – on top of the podium.

In the women’s race Annabel Luxford is the standout. The reigning Asia-Pacific champion over the half-ironman distance, Luxford has had stellar results all year, including podium finishes at the US and World Ironman 70.3 Championships. Addmitedly, Luxford is still learning a lot about the long-distance game, and we can expect even bigger things from the former ITU World Number One.

Luxford won’t have it easy, though. The likes of Rebecca Hoschke, Michelle Wu, Michelle Bremer and Matilda Raynolds (who sounds pretty confident as per her form at the presser!) will be ensuring the target on Luxford’s back is firmly in sight.

For live updates, stayed tuned to Challenge Australia’s Twitter handle from 1pm AEST tomorrow (Saturday 23rd Nov).


First name Last name Race number Gender Country Age category Suburb
Tim BERKEL 2 Male Australia Professional Port Macquarie
Tim REED 3 Male Australia Professional Byron Bay
Lindsey WALL 5 Male Australia Professional Yamba
Benjamin WILLIAMS 6 Male  USA Professional Honolulu
David MAINWARING 7 Male Australia Professional Wollongong
Adam GORDON 8 Male Australia Professional Southport
Michael FOX 9 Male Australia Professional Cronulla
Dylan MCNEICE 10 Male  New Zealand Professional Christchurch
Sam DOUGLAS 11 Male Australia Professional Cronulla
Bradley CLARK 12 Male Australia Professional Modanville
David COFFEY 13 Male Australia Professional Bondi beach
Alex DUNN 14 Male Australia Professional Church Point
Greg LAVELLE 15 Male Australia Professional East Corrimal
Luke MARTIN 16 Male Australia Professional Byron Bay
Nathan MILLER 17 Male Australia Professional Figtree
Paul O’DOHERTY 18 Male Australia Professional Randwick
Jarrod OWEN 19 Male Australia Professional Belgian gardens
Matthew PELLOW 20 Male Australia Professional Wollongong
Alex REITHMEIER 21 Male Australia Professional Loftus
Eden SAUL 22 Male Australia Professional Lennox Head
Daniel STEIN 23 Male Australia Professional Boambee
Eric WATSON 24 Male Australia Professional Tapping
Annabel LUXFORD 31 Female Australia Professional Bardon
Rebecca HOSCHKE 32 Female Australia Professional Narrabeen
Jessica SIMPSON 33 Female Australia Professional East corrimal
Rebecca PRESTON 34 Female Australia Professional Buderim
Michelle WU 35 Female Australia Professional Isaacs
Andrea FORREST 36 Female Australia Professional Penrith
Michelle BREMER 37 Female New Zealand Professional Windsor
Matilda RAYNOLDS 38 Female Australia Professional Braidwood
Paula LUKE 39 Female Australia Professional Sydney

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