Big summer ahead as Warrnambool triathlon club builds on popularity

WARRNAMBOOL Tri Club (wtc) will use the 2014-15 summer to consolidate itself on the regional sporting calendar after rapid growth in the past couple of years.

The club, which boasts about 180 members, has unveiled a reduced schedule for the upcoming season in a bid to go “back to our roots a little bit”, in the words of club president Claire Farrer.

The season starts with two events out of Warrnambool — an off-road duathlon at Koroit on October 5 and the Killarney triathlon on October 26.

An enduro triathlon using the Hopkins River and Blue Hole area is set for November 30. The inaugural event went ahead last season to a good reception.

The popular aquathon criterium in Lady Bay has been shifted back a week, to January 2, while the foreshore triathlon is on February 1.

The feature event on the calendar, the South West Sufferfest, is on March 1. The 2014 edition attracted almost 300 competitors, 30 per cent up on 2013.

Farrer said the six races were two fewer than last season.

The omissions are the Blue Hole Classic, an open-water swim in the Hopkins River, and the reverse triathlon at Albert Park. “We had a period where we grew really fast and it became difficult to manage. We’re consolidating this year, running fewer events but quality events,” Farrer said.

“We will definitely try and get in some more casual things this year too — we’ve got a fun run and a social gathering on September 7.

“We’re more aiming to get people together in a casual environment, more training groups and fun runs, group swims. We have quite a few people who are doing big distances and are solid athletes. But we want to focus our attention on people who are starting out triathlons.”

Farrer said the calendar was reflective of what the WTC was about — triathlons and duathlons, as opposed to solely swimming, cycling or running.

“We would’ve liked to run the Blue Hole swim again. i It was a charity event and a really good one. But there are other clubs running lots of swimming events,” she said.

“We’re trying to do what we’re good at. 

“We’re probably a bit short on manpower as well. What events we do run we want to make sure they’re quality events.”

People wanting to join the WTC can visit its website, www.warrnambooltriclub.com


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