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Triathlon: Jenkins to take on ‘best in the world’ in Sydney
The triathlon season heats up this weekend with the first of the ITU World Triathlon Series events in Sydney.
The Series features eight races around the world during 2012, culminating in the Grand Final in New Zealand in October. For British athletes, the first three rounds provide an opportunity to impress ahead of Olympic selection in June.
Reigning world champion Helen Jenkins goes up against a very competitive international women’s field. Having already met British Triathlon’s qualification criteria for the London 2012 Olympic Games, Jenkins will focus on performing well against many of the expected London 2012 Olympic Games medal contenders, including New Zealand’s Andrea Hewitt, and Australians Emma Moffatt and Emma Snowsill.
Having crashed on the bike last year, Jenkins finished in 33rd place in Sydney. She said: “This is my first race of the year and sometimes my first race is a bit rusty, but it’s all about getting preparation and this is the best race for me to do it because the best girls in the world are racing.
“All these races are just leading up to the build up for August.”
Liz Blatchford will want to continue her strong start to 2012. The 32-year-old already has third and fourth place finishes from early season ITU races in Australia and now needs to challenge for a podium finish in Sydney to put herself in the frame for a first Olympic selection.
Jodie Stimpson and Vicky Holland are in a similar position, along with Kerry Lang and Non Stanford, who are also set to race on Saturday morning.
The women’s race starts at 7.36am local time in Sydney and the start in Farm Cove will have the spectacular backdrop of the Sydney Opera House. The finish line, following the 1500m swim, 40km cycle ride and 10km run, will be on College Street.
BBC red button coverage is available from 10.30pm tonight for the women’s race and from 1.30am tomorrow for the men’s. You can also watch live on triathlonlive.tv.
British female athletes racing in Sydney:
The Women’s Sports Magazine