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An Elite Field In The Wake Of Bushfires

An Elite Field in the Wake of Bushfires

The 2013 Nepean Triathlon saw one of the hottest fields assembled for a triathlon in Australia for some time. It was also, arguably, Nepean Triathlon’s most star studded field. A significant increase in prize money from the sponsorship interest generated in the previous year drew a very elite field.

An Elite field

There were four Olympic representatives, a swathe of ITU competitors and numerous previous Nepean Triathlon champions in attendance across both men and women’s fields. The scene was set for a hot race at the front of the pack. The overall event sold out months in advance and the age group competition was also full of some excellent talent.

Bushfires put the event at risk

The lead up to Nepean Triathlon however was also filled with drama after the worst bushfires for many years had affected the surrounding areas. Roads were shut, air quality had deteriorated and the event was close to being regrettably cancelled. Luckily, the weather changed in time to allow the event to continue.

Records fall

Emma Moffatt the 2008 Olympic Bronze medallist hit the front in the run and stretched away to take a clear lead over the other ladies and take out the woman’s title, Moffatt also avoided capture by a determined Aaron Royle to take the outright victory from the men. Aaron had actually competed in the Enticer 10 years ago showing that these events have as intended bred future Nepean Triathlon champions.

The increased competition also had a dramatic impact on the course records:

  • Aaron Royle broke the race record set the previous crossing the line in 1 hour 26 minutes and 35 seconds
  • Emma Moffatt broke the women’s record by a long way and still holds the record at  1 hour 34 minutes and 39 seconds

Donation to the Rural Fire Service

A total donation of $14,000 was made by the Nepean Triathlon to the Rural Fire Service due to the recent fires. This came from multiple sources including a sponsors raffle well supported by competitors on the day. Moffatt also donated a significant portion of her prize money.

Pictured are (from left): Mel Leyshon, President Panthers Triathlon Club; Gordon Bell, Nepean Triathlon Co-Race Director; Ralph Jenner, Captain Cumberland Zone RFS; Richard Petch, Superintendent RFS; David Richardson, Panther Cycles; Warwick Brennan, Nepean Triathlon Co-Race Director; Alan Bentley, Nepean Aquatic Centre and Ron Freeman, Senior Deputy Captain, RFS.