Great Britain won two gold medals and eight medals in total at the ITU Paratriathlon World Championship event in Edmonton, Canada. Alison Patrick and Lauren Steadman were the gold medal winners for Britain in a very competitive world championships where athletes from thirteen different countries won medals.
Lauren Steadman, 21 from Peterborough, was involved in another close battle with teammates Faye McClelland and Clare Cunningham. McClelland was the four-time world champion coming in to Edmonton, but Steadman had already beaten her at the International Paratriathlon in Hyde Park and at the European Championships earlier this year.
Hailing from a Paralympic swimming background, Steadman used the swim to her advantage to build a lead that McClellend was unable to catch. Cunningham was third.
Steadman said: “I stayed relaxed and tried to enjoy the race. Crossing the line was purely fantastic. Faye is one tough cookie, she made it tough.”
Patrick, 26 from Livingston, was not even competing in triathlon a year ago, but the former international runner came through a close battle with former world champion, Melissa Reid and Spain’s Susana Rodriguez to win gold in the PT5 event for visually impaired athletes.
The race was so tight that guide, Jenny Manners, had to confirm to Patrick that she should celebrate victory at the finish.
Patrick said: “Even going into the finish straight we didn’t know we were first. I only knew because Jenny said ‘Alison, it’s the tape!’”
Reid, the world champion last year, finished second and was pleased to have been part of a very competitive race. She said: “I think it’s good, it means everyone is getting better and stronger.”
Phil Hogg was delighted with silver in the PT1 category. He said: “I’m absolutely stoked and so pleased. I’ve struggled with illness all though the winter. I had five months off and I was in hospital three times. My aim was bronze, so I’ve ticked that box and gone above it.”
Also in the PT1 category, Jane Egan won silver, commenting: “It was good. I’m happy with what I got out of it.”
Sarah Pearson celebrated her birthday with her first world championship medal, a bronze in the PT3 category.
British Paratriathlon Performance Manager, Jonathon Riall, said: “There were some standout performances; particularly Alison Patrick coming through. So it was a positive day all round with some tough competition.”
He added: “Great Britain won more medals than any other country, but the gold medals were hard fought. Congratulations to the USA on winning three.
“We’ve exceeded our targets, which was to win one of the Paralympic medal categories and to win two other medals within those categories.”
Great Britain Paratriathlon medal winners:
Clare Cunningham PT4
Sarah Pearson PT3