By World Triathlon Admin on 17/03/06 at 12:00 am
AUSTRALIA, Melbourne With helicopters hovering overhead and cameras pointed and ready, the second edition of the Commonwealth Games womens triathlon competition was run this morning under cloudy skies in Melbourne, Australia.
Pre race favourite Emma Snowsill took home the first ever Commonwealth Games triathlon gold medal for Australia in front of a thunderous home town crowd with a time of 1:58:02.
It was a unique experience having the entire crowd cheering for me said Snowsill. I hope today I have done Australia proud.
Cool temperatures had the athletes in their wetsuits for the 1500 metre swim. A large group of athletes came out of the water and into tranisition one together, led by former Commonwealth Games swimmer Susanne Weckand (CAN).
During the first stages of the bike a large pack formed including Snowsill, Annabel Luxford (AUS), Samantha Warriner (NZL), Andrea Hewitt (NZL), Liz Blatchford (ENG), Andrea Whitcomb (ENG), Debbie Tanner (NZL) and Jill Savege (CAN). After staying together for the entire bike it would come down to a running race as the pack came into the second transition.
Just when she was looking as though she was struggling, Snowsill made her move coming through the stadium at the five kilometre mark, opening up a 20 second lead in only a few hundred metres. This was the end of any doubt Snowsill would not finish on top as she coasted home with an ample lead. Finding time to stop and hug loved ones on the home stretch.
At first I was really struggling but things got better as it went on. stated Snowsill. It wasnt until the five kilometre point that I saw I had a bit of a break and I decided to go as hard as I can.
Samantha Warriner showed her strength staying with Snowsill and the leaders through the swim and bike looking very smooth during the first half of the run creating whispers of a possible upset.
My goal today was a podium. Its a dream come true, stated Warriner. I tried to push and get away early but I couldnt. Emma is so strong, she is a classic triathlete.
In the end she was unable to stay with Snowsill but hung on to second place with a time of 1:58:38.
She was followed closely by teammates Andrea Hewitt and Debbie Tanner who finished third and fourth respectively. Tanner had a phenomenal run, battling her way back up to Hewitt in the final kilometre but was out sprinted in the last fifty metres just missing the final podium spot.
The crowd support was unbelievable, Hewitt said, after finishing third. When I came into the home straight I saw my older sister and I put everything I had into the sprint. This is just amazing.
Bermudan athlete Flora Duffy had a breakthrough race finishing in eighth place.
2006 Commonwealth Games triathlon Women
1.SNOWSILL, Emma (AUS)1:58:02
2.WARRINER, Samantha (NZL) 1:58:38
3.HEWWITT, Andrea (NZL)1:58:46.08
4.TANNER, Debbie (NZL)1:58:46.64
5.LUXFORD, Annabel (AUS)1:59:19
6.BLATCHFORD, Liz (ENG)1:59:30
7.WHITCOMBE, Andrea (ENG)2:00:11
8.DUFFY, Flora (BER)2:00:35
9.SAVEGE, Jill (CAN)2:00:54
10.DIBENS, Julie (ENG)2:01:02
Stay tuned to triathlon.org for full race results and pictures.
Find more details about this event - 2006 Melbourne Commonwealth Games