Port Nelson Schools Triathlon
The first Port Nelson Schools Triathlon took place under rare sunny skies at Rabbit Island on Monday, with 126 students aged from 10 to 18 taking part from schools across the top of the south region.
Replacing the long-running Andrew Jones Memorial Triathlon, the new event was an instant success on a course much altered by recent storm damage.
Holly Goulter from Nelson College for Girls was the gold medallist in the girls under 16 section.
Photos by Janice Coyle:
As a trial run for the Tineli National Schools Tri Champs on March 19, 20, the event attracted entries from as far afield as Palmerston North and Marton, although these students were not eligible for medals.
Just over 50 individuals vied for honours over five age groups.
First up over a 250m swim, 9km bike and 2km run were the younger competitors, with Li-Na Chapman from Renwick School and Cam Anderson from Bohally Intermediate taking out the under 12 titles and Julia Kersten (Waimea Intermediate and Fenlon Bayley (Nelson Boys Prep) winning the under 13 races.
The next two age groups faced a longer challenge, with Waimea College's Isabella Thurlow and Adam Clatworthy winning in under 14, while Josh Sheridan from Nelson College and Tori Bendall from Nga Tawa in Marton crossed the line first in under 16. Holly Goulter from Nelson College for Girls went home with the gold medal as the first finisher from the region.
Hannah Barnsley from Marlborough Girls and Connor Guillemot from Marlborough Boys dominated the under 19 events.
Despite the planned transition, finish and car park areas still being under water, space was found at the waterlogged venue to run the event, with the run section using a taped off section of the partly destroyed beach front road.
Attention now turns to the national event, with about 250 entries expected. Interest has come from young triathletes as far afield as Samoa and Bermuda, with an entry already received from New Caledonia.
Members of the public are invited to watch top class racing, with individual triathlon on the morning of March 19 and aquathlon (run, swim, run) in the afternoon.
On the morning of March 20, schools will compete in mixed team racing, with groups of four each completing a short triathlon, team members tagging after each person completes their course.
Full results of the regional event at nelsontriclub.co.nz.
Details of the national event at nzschoolstri2018.co.nz