By David Peddie on 20/04/12 at 11:38 am
Great Britain's Georgia Taylor-Brown has become the European Junior Female Champion after a thrilling race in Eilat.
In searing heat of the early afternoon sun, Taylor-Brown had a superb race. She remained in contention throughout the swim and the bike before making a break on the last lap and no-one could catch her.
Leonie Periault (FRA) finished second and Sarah Wilm (GER) completed the podium.
The frontrunners after the swim were Anastasia Gorbunova (RUS) and Maya Kingma (HOL) who forced the lead after the half way stage of the swim and exited the water first.
Taylor-Brown followed with Eleni Stasinopolou (GRE) and Sophie Caldwell (GBR) emerging out of the water on their own before the pack exited together.
Lisa Schanung (ITA) exited T1 in the lead on the bike ahead of Sarah Wilm (GER) and Sky Draper (GBR) for three laps on the bike course. At the end of the first lap the trio had maintained their lead, although they were joined in the front pack by twenty athletes with the chasing pack some twenty seconds behind.
By the last lap, Maddie Winzer (GBR) had forced her way to through to join the front three who now held a narrow lead over the rest of the group. But as the front pack entered T2 it was Charlotte Deldaele (BEL), Schanung (ITA) and Draper who exited onto the 5km run first.
Coming off the bike, a wall of heat hit the field as the battled the searing heat. The pace of the first run lap was slow but a front five had emerged from the field and there was nothing to separate Tayor-Brown, Coldwell, Wilm, Renata Fuchs (HUN) and Leonie Periault (FRA) as they began the final lap.
It was anyone's title but Taylor-Brown powered away on the final lap and once in front she always looked comfortable in closing out the win to become Junior European Champion in her debut European Championships. She said: “It’s amazing, I didn’t even see it coming. I didn’t qualify last year so I didn’t know what girls were in it so I just kept myself at the front, had a good swim, kept myself in it on the bike and just ran for it in the front group.
"No-one was really going hard on the bike. I biked an easy bike, but I thought it was a bit too easy, so I just went for it on the run and just sat in and stuck with the lead group.
"The conditions were really hot, obviously it was alright on the swim, but then on the run you just felt your throat drying up. Every time I took water on, I just felt amazing and I could run again.”
Leonie Periault (FRA) finished second and Sarah Wilm (GER) completed the podium. Wilm said: “I didn’t expect to do so well, I just wanted to come here and finish. On the bike leg I was winning, but it was really hot.”
Find more details about this event - 2012 Eilat ETU Triathlon European Championships