Paula Findlay won the opening round of the Dextro Energy Triathlon ITU World Championship in Sydney after a tight battle on the run the saw a group of 6 women leading for most of the run.
Last years race winner, Chile’s Barbara Riveros Diaz was second after Findlay broke away with about 500m to go in the race. New Zealand’s Andrea Hewitt was third.
Emma Snowsill (42nd) was off the pace in the swim and was left by the front group on the bike.
Laura Bennett lead out of the water and was at the front for most of the race and fell off the pace on the last lap of the run. Emma Moffatt was 13th, a minute and a half behind the winning time. Moffatt was strong throughout the race and will no doubt get stronger as the series progresses. Being fast and fit at the end of the season is very important and it is early days in the series.
Sweden’s Lisa Norden, a self confessed slow starter, was right up amongst it for a lot of the race. She will just get stronger as the season goes by.
Felicity Abram was 15th overall, Emma Jackson 24th, Felicity Sheedy-Ryan 41st and Annabel Luxford 43rd.
Winner of the 2010 SiS Port Maquarie half ironman, New Zealand triathlete Anna Cleaver, raced well in her first big attempt at Olympic distance in around 8 years. After going to the USA to train with Siri Lindley’s squad she has decided to focus on Olympic distance at Siri’s suggestion.
Speaking to Trizone after the race Cleaver said she was stoked with her race. “I am so grateful to Triathlon New Zealand for giving me a start today and I am very happy with how I went. I have a lot of work to do on the run but I am already seeing my long course run starting to turn in to a short course run. I have a 3-6 month plan to get my run sorted.”
Anna heads off to the states on Tuesday to focus on Olympic distance. “I will be racing a 5150 at St Anthony’s and also the ITU race in Mexico. After that the squad will heade to Europe to race.”
Anna has recently left her job at Telstra in Sydney to focus on triathlon full time.