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ITU DUATHLON WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS

Concord, North Carolina, USA

After a long trek across to the East Coast of the States from New Zealand, a tired, but excited team of kiwis arrived in Concord, North Carolina bikes in tow. It was HOT, humid and averaging 28-30 degrees celcius in the week leading up to the race.

The race course was centered on a NASCAR speedway, transition in the middle of the speedway pitt area, and the run and bike course making its way out of the tunnels to the surrounding roads before re entering the main track. It was Standard Distance with a 10km Run, 40km Cycle, 5 Km Run.

We spent the week deciphering a very technical bike course and preparing our bikes with extra fuel supplies for a hot race. Getting to the track from our hotel required a cycle along the main freeway...a little dangerous at the best of times especially when I am used to cycling on the opposite side of the road!

However race day came and so did the rain, the temperature dropped and it poured down. By 3pm I was more than ready to race. My well thought out race plan went out the window after about 100m, I realised that there were several pretty quick runners that I was not going to be able to put any sort of time on over 10km, so I ran steady and waited for the cycle. I came into transition in 4th place, two Americans and a Japanese girl ahead of me. It felt like a normal wet training ride, and I comfortably managed to catch the front girl and put some time on her, it was pretty awesome to time trial down the main drag strip even if there were large puddles! We also got to ride 2 laps of the main speedway before back into transition. I finished 1min 30 ahead of the Japanese girl and won the 20-24 age group consisting of 18 other competitors. An overall awesome experience and very rewarding end to my first World Championships trip.

Kelly Parlane

Here are just a few pictures taken from the recent race. To view the full sized image, click on the picture.

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