Joe Townsend

Joe Townsend is a UK Sport Lottery Funded paratriathlete. He is based from home in Eastbourne. Having taken up triathlon in 2011, he represented Great Britain at the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games. He has won European and world medals as well as becoming Commonwealth Champion in April 2018.

Joe is a former Royal Marine Commando who lost both legs in an explosion in Afghanistan in 2008. Had had no previous swimming background and got into hand cycling as part of his rehabilitation. 

He went on to complete the Ironman UK triathlon in Bolton in July 2011 and then in 2012, he competed at the Ironman World Championships in Kona, Hawaii, where he finished second in the disability category in a time of 11:35:52. 

Joe carried the Paralympic Flame into the London 2012 stadium as part of the opening ceremony. He was suspended by wires and made a dramatic overhead entrance to the arena, even though he is actually scared of heights.

At the Invictus Games in 2014 he won four gold medals on the athletics track. He also took part in the cycling and power lifting events.

Joe’s first taste of international triathlon came in 2012 at the European Championships in Eilat. He finished third. He finished sixth in the very competitive Rio Paratriathlon and has made significant improvements since. 

He won his first global medal at the ITU world championships in Rotterdam in 2017 and repeated this finishing position again in 2018. His classification is dominated by two huge Dutch athletes, but Joe is consistently performing as the third best wheelchair athlete in the world.

Major Results

Date Event Position
27th May 2019 2019 GBR Paratriathlon National Championships 1st
27th Apr 2019 2019 Milan ITU World Paratriathlon Series 5th
15th Sep 2018 2018 ITU World Triathlon Grand Final Gold Coast 3rd
19th Jul 2018 2018 Tartu ETU Triathlon European Championships 2nd
30th Jun 2018 2018 Iseo - Franciacorta ITU World Paratriathlon Series 3rd
28th May 2018 2018 Eton Dorney ITU Paratriathlon World Cup 1st
12th May 2018 2018 Yokohama ITU World Paratriathlon Series 3rd
7th Apr 2018 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games 1st
15th Sep 2017 2017 ITU World Triathlon Grand Final Rotterdam 3rd
28th Jul 2017 2017 Edmonton ITU World Paratriathlon Series 2nd
13th May 2017 2017 Yokohama ITU World Paratriathlon Series 4th
10th Sep 2016 2016 Rio de Janeiro Paralympic Games 6th
24th Jul 2016 2016 Rotterdam ITU Paratriathlon World Championships 5th
19th Jun 2016 2016 Besançon ITU World Paratriathlon Event 3rd
27th May 2016 2016 Lisbon ETU Triathlon European Championships 3rd
24th Apr 2016 2016 Penrith ITU World Paratriathlon Event 2nd
18th Sep 2015 2015 ITU World Triathlon Grand Final Chicago 7th
1st Aug 2015 2015 Rio de Janeiro ITU World Paratriathlon Event 4th
18th Jul 2015 2015 Iseo - Franciacorta ITU World Paratriathlon Event 3rd
10th Jul 2015 2015 Geneva ETU Triathlon European Championships 4th
7th Jun 2015 2015 Besançon ITU World Paratriathlon Event 2nd
16th May 2015 2015 GBR Paratriathlon National Championships 2nd
10th May 2015 2015 Madrid ITU World Paratriathlon Event 4th
21st Sep 2014 2014 Madrid ITU World Paratriathlon Event 3rd
30th Aug 2014 2014 ITU World Triathlon Grand Final Edmonton 4th
10th Aug 2014 2014 GBR Paratriathlon National Championships 3rd
21st Jun 2014 2014 Kitzbühel ETU Triathlon European Championships 3rd
31st May 2014 2014 London ITU World Paratriathlon Event 4th
17th May 2014 2014 Yokohama ITU World Paratriathlon Event 2nd
13th Sep 2013 2013 ITU World Triathlon Grand Final London DNF
16th Jun 2013 2013 Alanya ETU Triathlon European Championships 3rd
22nd Oct 2012 2012 Barfoot and Thompson World Triathlon Grand Final Auckland 6th
22nd Apr 2012 2012 Eilat ETU Triathlon European Championships 3rd

Joe was based at the Loughborough Triathlon Performance Centre, but himself from home following the Rio Paralympic Games. He has a wife and young child. He has aspirations to work in elite sport as a Strength and Conditioning coach having become the first UKSCA accredited strength and conditioning coach in a wheel chair.

Joe achived his first global medal with bronze at the ITU Paratriathlon World Championships in Rotterdam in 2017. He achieved a stunning gold medal at the 2018 Commonwealth Games on the Gold Coast, where Paratriathlon featured in the Games for the first time ever.

Thanks to our Partners

Join Us

And enjoy insurance benefits, race licensing and more...