Heat, leg­end no match for Ti­rau teen

South Waikato News - - NEWS -

Ti­rau triath­lete Re­becca Kings­ford got her year off to a flyer with a win in the Con­tact Tri-Se­ries race in Whanga­mata on Jan­uary 2.

Kings­ford up­set iron­man leg­end Jo Lawn in claim­ing the win, her sec­ond vic­tory in a week.

On De­cem­ber 27 Kings­ford won the Surf­breaker Triathlon in Tau­ranga. There the 19 year old fin­ished nearly three min­utes clear of her near­est ri­val Mad­die Dil­lon.

The Whanga­mata race was a tougher propo­si­tion for Kings­ford.

Rac­ing in 30 de­gree Cel­sius heat she tus­sled with de­fend­ingcham­pion Lawn, Teresa Adam and Maddy Brun­ton through­out the event.

Adam led out of the wa­ter and at the end of the bike stage. Start­ing the run, Kings­ford was 20 sec­onds be­hind the race leader with Lawn and Brun­ton 45 sec­onds be­hind her.

With one lap of three com­pleted, Adam started to strug­gle with a calf mus­cle prob­lem and lost time be­fore she even­tu­ally with­drew. This meant Kings­ford took over the race lead with Lawn sec­ond.

Kings­ford won in a time of two hours six min­utes and 14 sec­onds to head off her se­nior ri­val by two min­utes 15 sec­onds.

‘‘It was tough,’’ Kings­ford said af­ter the race. ‘‘I en­joyed the swim with the waves and a bit of swell, the bike was tough and to be hon­est I kept look­ing around to see how far back Jo was and if she was catch­ing and the run was in­cred­i­bly hot.

‘‘To think I have beaten a leg­end like Jo Lawn to­day though is un­real and a great re­sult.’’

Lawn is a mul­ti­sport leg­end in New Zealand, she has won the New Zealand iron­man event at Taupo seven times.

Kings­ford said she planned to race the North Is­land events in the Con­tact Tri-Se­ries and aimed to make the New Zealand team for the world cham­pi­onships for a sec­ond con­sec­u­tive year. The teen fin­ished 28th in the women’s un­der 23 event at the ITU World Cham­pi­onships in Budapest last Septem­ber. Her next race in the Con­tact Tri-Se­ries is at Kin­loch.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from New Zealand

© PressReader. All rights reserved.