British Triathlon has named its largest ever paratriathlon squad for the ETU European Championships in Alanya, Turkey, next month. World Champions Steven Judge and Iain Dawson have their sights on adding to their international medal tallies, whilst Talent squad members will look forward to their first major international events.
The team of seventeen athletes and five guides will compete in the Paratriathlon on Sunday 16 June. The event covers a 750m swim, 20km bike and 5km run with athletes using hand bikes and racing chairs as necessary depending on their disability. Visually impaired athletes race with a sighted guide athlete.
British Paratriathlon Performance Manager, Jonathon Riall commented: “We’re delighted to have been able to select our largest ever Paratriathlon team for the European Championships. It definitely feels like we are on the road to Rio now and the additional UK Sport Lottery funding has enabled us to take a truly world-class support team with us as well.
“This event is about maintaining our position as the world’s top paratriathlon nation, providing racing opportunities in preparation for the world championships in London and developing athletes in new categories.”
Clare Cunningham is one of the longest serving members of the Great Britain Paratriathlon Team, having won the European title in Holten in 2009.
She commented: “I’ve been part of the British Paratriathlon set up since it started, and it’s really exciting to be part of the biggest ever team. Since finding out that we would have the opportunity to be part of the Paralympics in Rio things have really stepped up and the British team leads the way in terms of professionalism and results.
“I’m in good shape and really looking forward to the Europeans. I last won the title in 2009 and I hope that the fact it’s my birthday during the Championships is a good omen for it being a special weekend for me and the rest of the team.”
Reigning European Champions Jane Egan, Iain Dawson and Charlotte Ellis will look to defend their titles in Alanya as well as mentor new members. Many of the new squad members are benefitting from Triathlon England Talent Squad funding from Sport England, enabling them to compete internationally for the first time.
Great Britain Paratriathlon Squad, ETU European Championships, 14-16 June 2013
Phil Hogg, 43, Heanor, Derbyshire
Jimmy Goddard, 35, Bracknell
Joe Townsend, 25, Eastbourne
Jane Egan, 42, Glasgow, World Champion 2010 & 2011
Steve Judge, 40, Eckington, Sheffield, World Champion 2011 & 2012
Sarah Pearson, 42, South Devon
Joe Allen, 25, Bridport, Devon
Dave Hill, 24, Bath
Clare Cunningham, 35, Cambridge
Lauren Steadman, 20, Peterborough
George Peasgood, 17, Saffron Walden, Essex
Adrian Heathfield, 38, Kent
Haseeb Ahmed, 43, Leicester, guided by Ben Matthews
Iain Dawson, 36, Norwich, World Champion 2010 & 2012, guided by Carl Shaw
David Ellis, 26, Heanor, Derbyshire, guided by Luke Watson
Charlotte Ellis, 28, Redcar, Yorkshire, World Champion 2010 & 2011, guided by Jenny Manners
Melissa Reid, 22, Truro, guide TBC