Triathlon World Champion Helen Jenkins is aiming for victory on home soil at the Parc Bryn Bach Elite Triathlon on Saturday July 18. The fourth event in the British Triathlon Super Series will also double up as the British Triathlon Sprint Distance Elite Championships.
Jenkins (pictured with husband and coach Marc below) heads up a team of Welsh athletes who will all be competing for Elite Series points next weekend. Triathletes Rhian Roxburgh, Vicki Wade, Elanor Thorogood, Luke Watson and Rhys Jones will all be flying the flag for Wales and will aim to be hot on the heels of the World Champion.
Jenkins like all World Champions is desperate to win at Bryn Bach: "I have never raced there before so I am keen to do well and win. It's a challenging and honest course in a great location, I can't wait for it to see what I can do. We have had a great summer so the water should be warmer than normal so no excuses there. I hope people will come out and support us!"
The twenty-five year old from Bridgend was with her husband and coach Marc, 32, today planning their strategy: "The event will be run over the sprint distance which is a 750m swim, 20km bike and 5km run. The Olympic distance is probably my preferred distance, I love the longer distances and next weekend the younger athletes will all be good at the sprint distance but it's all good practice for me, it will help sharpen me up."
With the Dextro Energy Triathlon ITU World Championships Series taking place in Hyde Park next month Jenkins is keen to put on a good show next weekend in her own country: "I am really looking forward to the next few weeks, I am off to Austria to race in Kitzbuhel this weekend, then Bryn Bach the following weekend followed by the World Champs in London - it's an exciting time of the year for me. I came fifth in Washington last month in a competitive field so I am in good shape for the weeks ahead."
Away from triathlon the couple relax with Barney their labrador and like going to the cinema but a house move is keeping them occupied at present: "Builders seem to be taking up most of our time at the moment so it's pretty busy in our house between training sessions but Barney is a good companion and helps us relax."
And with the opening Ashes Test taking place in Cardiff this week Jenkins believes Welsh sport is moving in the right direction: "Sport is important to all Welsh, they love their sport particularly rugby and this is a big week for the cricket team, it's just a shame Simon Jones is not in the team this time round but everyone is talking about this Test Match down here."
The Parc Bryn Bach Park Elite Triathlon, run by the British Triathlon Federation and part of a new British Triathlon Super Series, takes place on Saturday July 18. The women's race starts at 11.30am and men's at 13.00pm. For more information visit www.britishtriathlon.org. Entry to spectators is free.
For more information on travelling to the venue please visit the Blaenau Gwent website www.blaenau-gwent.gov.uk.
The British Triathlon Super Series creates a world class environment for domestic and international competitors, providing a high profile shop window for Triathlon in the UK. The Series aims to raise awareness and encourage participation in the country's fastest growing sport in the build up to London 2012.
About British Triathlon
British Triathlon is the National Governing Body for Triathlon, Duathlon and Aquathlon in Great Britain, responsible for leading growth and performance of the sport. At international level Great Britain boasts a strong squad of world ranked elite triathletes who regularly achieve international success and has some outstanding young talent emerging from its youth programmes. There are over 700 triathlon events conducted in Great Britain each year including the renowned Mazda London Triathlon and British Triathlon Elite Series which attracts athletes from all over the world. British Triathlon aims to promote excellence in our sport, and create opportunities for everyone to achieve their personal triathlon challenges. (www.britishtriathlon.org)+