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Return of elite-level racing

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With the return of elite-level racing, it was a busy weekend of action for our Performance Programme and Centre athletes.

Osian Perrin ran an incredible 13:53 to break the Welsh U20 record and qualify for the European Championships at the BMC Grand Prix in Watford – well done Osian!

In Besançon, France, Rhys Jones (guided by Rhys James – the two Rhys’..?) began his Commonwealth Games qualification campaign with a 9th place finish at the Paratriathlon World Cup event. This was enough to move him into the ranking slots as it stands, and he will hope to consolidate this next weekend as the pair compete again in Á Cor┼źna, Spain.

Meanwhile, in Coimbra, Portugal, a number of the NTPCW athletes were competing in the European Cup event to kickstart their international competition calendar. After 30+ degrees in the leadup to the race, it was thunderstorms on race day, making for challenging conditions with big fields competing. First home was Matthew Wright in 13th after recording one of the fastest run splits of the day, while Freddie Webb made his senior European Cup debut with a strong 28th place finish, and Ollie Turner backed up his performance last month in Olsztyn, Poland with another solid top-40 placing. Unfortunately, Ellie White (also on her senior debut) was a DNF after crashing on the bike leg in the tricky conditions.

Closer to home, we saw the PTO-supported event at Eton Dorney held over the ‘in-between’ distance of 1.8k swim, 60k bike and 15k run. Josh Lewis and Sam Wade were in action, with Josh taking the race on and exiting the swim with nearly 45s over the chase pack, which included Sam. Both guys rode well to maintain competitive positions at the end of the bike leg, however they found the run tough going in unusually hot conditions for the UK and eventually came home in 8th & 9th, albeit still creditable results in a stacked field. They will compete again over the middle-distance in the Outlaw events at Nottingham and Holkham over the next few weeks.

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