Triathlete has sights on Europe
TRIATHLON: Beware Ben Wriede and Fin Turley, you just may meet your match tomorrow.
Locally grown semi-professional triathlete, Brian McLeod, is back in town and all revved up to test the strength of his old Frenchville Frogs club mates in race five of the Tuckers Cycle Inn Series at Tannum Sands.
Ben Wriede and Fin Turley, who have been the two top triathlon competitors this season, will have to pull out all stops if they want to match the fury of McLeod on the gruelling swim-bike-run course.
McLeod, 19, started racing with the Frenchville Frogs when he was 15, but within the last 12 months he has stepped up to compete in China and train with the Australian Institute of Sport.
And Wriede and Turley will struggle to find a weakness with McLeod, who admits he is consistent with all three legs and is confident that he will take the race with full force.
Frenchville Frogs’ Wayne Clifford said the return of McLeod would not only test the competitors, but also push them.
“The competitors look up to him, especially Ben and Fin. But they also will want to try and match him,” Clifford said.
“McLeod is our highest-ranked locally grown athlete to that level, but he still has a long way to go – there is no denying that.”
McLeod has put all else aside to chase his dreams to become a professional athlete, which means more than 30 hours a week of intense training.
“It’s only been in the last year that I have really put my head down and decided to take it to the top level,” McLeod said.
“To race professionally is my aim and this season I will go over to Europe in the under-23 Australian team and then hopefully next season I will be racing for a team in Germany professionally.”
McLeod said his long-term goal was the 2014 Commonwealth Games and then the Olympics after that.
And although he has had a hand at other sports like football, he says he wouldn’t do anything else other than triathlons.
“I don’t know why I love it; you’ve got to be a bit crazy I suppose, but I really love it,” he said.
But despite the level he has reached, he says he will always be a Rocky boy at heart.
“I call Rocky home; I am always going to be a Rocky boy. But I am located Brisbane and training there,” he said.
“I have come back to support the Frenchville Frogs as Wayne has done a lot for me and Shane Kingston (Rocky City Swimming Club coach) has as well.”
“I really couldn’t do this without the support of my parents and family.”
The Frenchville Frogs Triathlon will kick off 7am at the Esplanade at Tannum Sands tomorrow.