Four-time winner to return for triathlon
FOUR-TIME champion Sam Betten will return to the Whitsundays intent on reclaiming his throne.
The most dominant athlete in the event’s history, Betten last claimed victory in 2012 but was forced to miss last year’s race with other commitments.
Betten is currently preparing for the World Long Course Championships, but is certain to be a sure thing when the Airlie Beach Triathlon comes around next month.
The event will be Betten’s final hit out before the World Championships in China just two weeks later.
“Airlie Beach holds lots of positive memories for me, and a chance to compete on a happy hunting ground just a fortnight out from the World Champs will be great for me physically and mentally,” he said.
Betten is likely to be tested by local hope Lloyd Clode-Roberts, Mackay’s Ryan Palazzi and Townsville’s Sam Murphy.
In the meantime, the pre-race build-up continues to build pace, with junior registrations flooding in.
The big push by the Whitsunday Triathlon Club has been to engage with the community on a greater level while also encouraging first-timers to get involved.
“Our ASICS Enticer and the various team options in all races are all about providing that avenue for people to have a go,” club president Steve Jackson said.”
“People still get the full race day experience with the same or shorter swim, ride and run courses, a competitor singlet and gift pack, the thrill of the crowd support, but without the crowded start line. The emphasis is on being part of it rather than times and finishing places.”
Jackson has been visiting local schools and is strongly urging children and parents to get behind the younger formats.
The Airlie Beach Triathlon is three weeks away, and the club is offering adult and high school-aged competitors free modified race training from 6am on Saturday mornings at the Airlie beach Lagoon.
Junior sessions commence at 7.30am.