Two time Olympic champion Alistair Brownlee heads up a stellar line up of international and Commonwealth athletes looking to kick start their 2018 season over the super tough ITU Mooloolaba course on Saturday 10th March.
With ITU Mooloolaba World Cup only three weeks before the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games triathlon, athletes from across the world are arriving on the Sunshine Coast to finalise their preparations and get into race mode in conditions similar to what they can expect in April.
Brownlee is arguably the most successful triathlete in the sport’s history and he is in Queensland to add to his legend and prepare for the defence of his Commonwealth Games gold he won in Glasgow in 2014.
He will be joined by Rio Olympians Richard Murray (RSA), Aaron Royle, Ryan Bailie and Ryan Fisher, plus the Aussie Commonwealth Games team members Luke Willian, Matt Hauser and the recent winner of the Devonport Oceania Cup Brandon Copeland.
Commonwealth Games team member Charlotte McShane heads up the Aussie women’s contingent and together with Emma Jeffcoat, recent winner of the Gold Coast Triathlon, and World Triathlon Series regular Natalie van Coevorden, she will be fending off the best of the Commonwealth countries and the up and coming internationals.
“My preparation won’t change too much as I have been ready to race in March/April in the past few years for WTS races. In the past the swim has been hit and miss for me so I’m putting a lot of effort into making sure it is more of a hit.”
“I think the sprint distance suits my strengths and I find this distance a lot of fun and exciting. The race is over before you know it and it will be crazy fast from the very start. Every second counts and there is no time for hesitation,” Charlotte said.
Making a welcome return to Australia and short course racing is a genuine legend of the sport Vanessa Fernandes. The 2008 Olympic silver medallist cemented her legacy as one of the greatest female athletes of all time with a record 20 ITU World Cup wins, more than any other male or female athlete.
Fernandes is no stranger to the Mooloolaba course and the excruciating Alexandra Headland, having placed second behind Emma Snowsill in 2008 and third behind Snowsill and Erin Densham in 2007. Her numerous Aussie fans will be delighted to see her racing again and the feeling is mutual.
“I can’t wait to get there. I really love Australia,” she said.