Nearly 600 of WA’s best triathletes took on the challenge at the City of Joondalup Coastal Quest last Sunday for the Triathlon WA State Sprint Championships.
A shark threat at Whitford Nodes forced athletes to pivot into Duathlon mode, but all competitors adapted quickly with strong performances from start to finish.
Reigning Ironman Matt Burton (Oceanic) snagged the State Championships and the Brynt McSwain Trophy for fastest male athlete on course, finishing the race in a blistering 0:54:23.53. Young gun athletes Kurt Wesley (North Coast) and Zeke Tinley (Bunbury) put up an impressive fight, finishing just seconds behind Burton to claim second and third place respectively. Athletes Reece Harris (Mandurah), Sam Mileham (Fremantle), Guy Crawford (Fremantle), James Martin (Bunbury), Tommaso Puccini (UWA) and Tokyo Paralympian David Bryant (Stadium) rounded out the male Elite field, making for a fantastic race.
Competition was red-hot in the Elite women’s field, with several of Perth’s best athletes vying for top spot. Aleisha Wesley (North Coast) took out first place in a time of 01:04:27.89, earning her a hat-trick hot streak of State Championship wins. Rhianna Hepburn (UWA) was hot on Wesley’s heels, finishing just seconds behind. Indie Arbuckle (Team XTR) crossed the line in third place, only seconds behind Hepburn. The top 3 ladies were really given a run for their money, with the Elite women’s field including the likes of experienced triathletes Kate Bevilaqua (Fremantle), Katherine Ryan (Stadium), Madison Toovey (North Coast) and hotshot team-mates Indie Arbuckle (Team XTR) and Jessica Claxton (Team XTR).
We saw strong performances from age group athletes including Loic Draoulec (Stadium), Drew Mitchell (Mandurah), Ronan Hays (Mandurah), Craig Lllewellyn (North Coast), James Knipe (Team XTR), Jason Rhine (Exceed), Rebecca Preston (Exceed), Emma Moon (Phoenix), Melanie Wade (Stadium), Janne Leibmann (Fremantle), Clodagh Glynn (Stadium) and Phoebe Freeman (Fremantle).
Junior athletes gave it their all at the State Sprint Championships, proving they can more than keep up with the Seniors.
In the 11-13 category, up and coming athletes Ava Henville (Exceed), Rebecca Puccini (UWA) and Isabella Neervort (Fremantle) took out top honours for the girls. Max Buiks (City Tri Club) claimed second for the boys race, putting himself on the Junior TOTY leaderboard.
Jacob Palmer (Break Your Limits) claimed top spot in the 14-15 male category, followed by Josh Pedlow (Exceed) in second.
The 16-19 categories were hotly contested, with reigning male junior age-group TOTY winner James Kjellgren-Lewis (Fremantle), current TOTY leader Emily White (Exceed) and Abbie Crew (North Coast) putting on an impressive show.
The next State Series event on the Triathlon Western Australia calendar is the Oceanic Standard Distance on 16 January 2022 at Hillarys.