• By: KH
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True Grit – Tough Triathlon Competitiors

Harry McLoughlin and Liam Bird of the Junior Elite Training Squad recently took themselves down to Gisborne for the Triathlon Championships, pitting themselves against the rest of the best from around the country. In a total field of over 800 our boys performed with guts and glory.

It was the first time Green Bay High School  triathletes have competed in this event and both acquitted themselves well.
In particularly big surf (the U16 girls event was re-started) the power of the waves tore into the field, but this did not daunt our athletes, who challenged themselves – as well as racing each other in every competition.

Liam struggled in the swim, but true to character put in good performances in his other two disciplines. As he builds through the triathlon off-season he looks forward to big improvements in his weaker area and to a winter that brings duathlons, playing to his current bike/run strength. Next season can’t come soon enough with points to prove out on the course.

Harry made a solid start in the swim, coming out of the first transition in a talented chase pack. With a top-ten bike split and a gut churning run, he grabbed a national top ten finish, completing the course in ninth place. But with being only a couple of minutes from the podium across 500m in the water and 18 kilometres on the land, Harry has some specific targets to aim for next season.

All in all, a very impressive first showing at this level, with 3Coaching’s Ben Chidgey behind a winter of directed effort these two JETS members can be sure to make the improvements necessary to be even faster next year.