Fast paratriathlon racing in Kitzbühel
Paratriathletes kicked of the continued European Championship action on Saturday with some fast-paced racing. Check out highlights from the races below.
Superman Jetze Plat crushes competition in PT1
Handbiker Jetze Plat from the Netherlands has only recently discovered triathlon, but has made quite a name in the sport already. In Kitzbühel, “Superman” Plat crushed the competition on the bike course, and finished in an incredible time of 59:48. More than six minutes later, Phil Hogg and Joe Townsend took silver and bronze for Team GB. Plat seems ready to qualify for Rio.
“Well, my priorities are still with my favourite sport, handbiking. But I love triathlon and I am considering aiming for the paratriathlon in Rio as well. I am happy with my first European gold.”
In the women’s race Karen Darke did not expect to win. ” I loved the climbs here, although I did not expect to go this fast. It’s great to win the gold here. Her British team mate Jane Egan won silver and Rita Cuccuru from Italy came in third.
PT2 sees tight battles
Vasily Egorov (RUS) and Michele Ferrarin (ITA) battled to the finish. Ferrarin was aiming for silver but saw Vasily overtake him in the final kilometer of the run. In the women’s race Germany’s Nora Hansel took the win. while Veronika Gabitova took the silver medal for Russia.
Alessio Borgato and Saskia Van Den Ouden are PT3 champions
Saskia Van Den Ouden led from start to finish in PT3. The Dutch paratriathlete was thrilled with her European title, leaving Sarah Pearson (GBR) in second. In the men’s race, Austrian Oliver Dreier took the top spot in PT3 after being reclassified to the category, followed by Alessio Borgato (ITA).
Martin Schulz out sprints Yannick Bourseaux in PT4
Race favorites Lauren Steadman and Faye Mcclelland won the gold & silver medals for Great Britain. They were hoping for a clean sweep with Clare Cunningham aiming for bronze, but it was Italy’s Irene Riviera who overtook Clare in the final lap of the run, finishing in third place.
The men’s race was the most exciting of them all with Martin Schulz (GER) and Yannick Bourseaux (FRA) coming into T2 together. The two paratriathletes stuck together until the finish chute. Schulz was the fastest in the sprint and was delighted to win the gold medal. Bourseaux took silver and is already looking forward. “Martin was too strong in the final meters, so I am happy with silver, but I am looking forward to a big rematch in Edmonton.”
Susana Rodriguez holds off Melissa Reid in PT5
Brits Chris Goodwin and Dave Ellis were awarded another pair of gold and silver medals. Serbia’s Lazar Filipovic looked to be going for bronze halfway through the run, but he had to be satisfied with a fifth place finish. Ukraine’s Vasyl Rakrevskyi (3rd) and Alen Kobilica overtook him in the final run lap.
In the women’s race Susana Rodriguez (ESP) had a tight battle with Great Britain’s Melissa Reid. Reid almost closed the gap halfway through the run, but Rodriguez maintained a lead of only 20 seconds to claim the European title. Reid took silver and Alison Patrick (GBR) won the bronze medal.