The stunning new venue for the Canterbury Classic 2022 did not disappoint eager triathletes & duathletes on Sunday 30 January. Despite the Covid-19 Protection Framework Red light settings, the team held a successful and safe event for all participants. This was the first ever triathlon held in Wainui on Banks Pensinsula, opposite Akaroa township.
The very challenging course from Wainui to Barry’s Bay return twice on the bike and up the Cemetery Road hill on the run gave the competitors a very honest race. Locals came out to support with set up, marshalling and support staff, which included individuals from the YMCA.
Sarah McClure won the Olympic / Standard Distance triathlon in a time of 2 hours 21mins, followed by Kiri Atkin and Laura Pfeifer. Hayden Squance (Nelson) won the men’s Olympic / Standard Distance triathlon in 2 hours 5 mins, followed by Jack Staples and Laurie Watson.
Event Organiser John Newsom commented, “We are so proud to have delivered a safe and enjoyable event for everyone. The athletes, our volunteers and support staff’s health is our number one priority and we knew we could make this event work under red light setting. The feedback from the athletes was very positive, although a few expletives on how hard the course was!”
Abby Nattrass won the Olympic / Standard distance Duathlon with Camilla Gardiner in second and Penny Costello in third. Craig Savage dominated in the Olympic / Standard distance Duathlon with James Gatehouse and Benjamin Scott fighting for second and third respectively.
“It was a delight to be able to attend the Tri NZ Suzuki National Champs for Standard Triathlon, Duathlon and Aquabike on the weekend at Wainui,” commented Mel Saltiel, Tri NZ Community Manager. “The venue and atmosphere was something special, a reflection on the fact we appreciate every event we are able to hold in these changing times. As a new event to the area it was pleasing to see the local community engaged in the event and thoughtful of our athletes out on their roads. Congratulations to all for making this event a special day.”
Olympic / Standard distance Aquabike was mastered by Michael Crowe, followed by Richard Ferguson and Tim Raw.
Famous Olympic triathlete from Beijing, London and Rio, Andrea Hansen (née Hewitt) raced in the Short course event and showed her younger High Performance teammates Olivia Thornbury and Brea Roderick her heels as she took the top spot in 1 hour 2 mins over the 750m swim, 20km bike and 5km run. Olivia took silver spot in 1 hour 4 mins and Brea 4 mins later.
The men’s Short course field was equally as fast paced with HP athlete Janus Staufenberg beating fellow teammate Saxon Morgan (Silver medallist in Mixed Team Relay at World Triathlon event in Montreal) by a mere 8 secs in a thrilling finish! Followed under 2 minutes later by Gus Marfell.
Full Results here