Ben Wriede crosses the finish line in second place during a club event but is a leader on the national scene in his age group.
Ben Wriede crosses the finish line in second place during a club event but is a leader on the national scene in his age group. File

Ben pushes on in triathlon

IT was brutal conditions but Ben Wriede used all of his strength to push himself from the back pack into fifth place in the 2XU Australian Junior Triathlon Series race in Canberra.

And the top ten spot has put him one step closer to the world championships in Budapest later this year.

Ben Wriede and Fin Turley competed against 60 of the best under-19 Australian triathletes on the weekend in the first selection race for two Australian squads.

And although it was a full throttle performance from Wriede it was also a race that Turley “wishes he could forget”.

Frenchville Frogs Triathlon Coach Wayne Clifford said after the first transition from the 750 metre swim leg Turley came out strong in the second pack of triathletes with Wriede, whose weakest leg is swim, in the fourth pack.

The boys then went out in full steam in the 20km bike leg and as Wriede sped past his opponents to gain a higher position, Turley started to feel scorching heat.

“Fin became physically sick in the bike leg – the conditions were rough and if you are feeling a little off this happens and he wasn’t feeling quite right when he started,” Clifford said.

“He then dropped off the pack and lost his place up the front, but he still finished the race off.”

With his training partner out Wriede took the course into his own hands.

And although his opponents didn’t see him as a threat in the swim leg, when Wriede hit the bike he changed the whole dimension on the race.

“Ben rode through a sensational ride and worked hard to catch the leading group of the first placegetters,” Clifford said.

“At the very end of the bike Ben caught them coming into the transition.

“He then worked his way through the group running himself into eighth position then cleared fifth in the last five kilometres.”

Wriede’s top ten position has now set him up for a good chance to be selected for the world champions and youth Olympics team.

The triathlon winner Drew Vile has already secured his spot in the world champions team.

But Clifford said it isn’t over for Turley with the next selection race approaching in February.

“It is not over for Fin, there are still a couple of races for him to secure a spot, though it is going to make it a bit more difficult,” he said.



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