Great Britain returned with six medals from a successful weekend in Valencia, including two golds and a one-two for Lauren Steadman and Claire Cashmore.
An 11 strong British Triathlon team, spread across eight classifications, headed out to Valencia this weekend for the ETU European Paratriathlon Championships. For an explanation of the various paratriathlon classifications, please click here.
The weather in the days before the race caused a few schedule changes and saw the Friday swim familiarisation cancelled, however come Saturday afternoon, the athletes were off and swim, bike, running.
Lauren Steadman and Claire Cashmore achieved yet another one-two, with Steadman taking the top step on the podium this time out. The two Brits were way ahead of the rest of the pack and in a race of their own from the start. It was Steadman who kicked on during the run leg to take the tape ahead of her compatriot as the two cemented their position as the ones to beat.
Melissa Reid secured Britain’s first medal of the Championships with silver in the women’s PTVI race alongside guide Elle Twentyman. Matching her silver medal from Tokyo and the Grand Final in Lausanne, she claimed yet another podium finish.
Reid’s medal opened the door for her teammates to follow, with four medals in the PTS races as all the British athletes secured top 10 finishes.
In the PTS2 races, Andy Lewis and Stuart Meikle, finished second and sixth for the men; with Fran Brown winning the team’s second gold medal of the day in the women’s race. Michael Taylor finished sixth in the PTS4 race; before George Peasgood, racing in the PTS5 event, finished fifth. Peasgood, who also suffered a puncture, ran the last few hundred metres of his bike leg to surrender nearly a minute’s lead.
Dave Ellis and his guide Luke Pollard were the first Brits on the start line in the men’s PTVI race. Ellis, who claimed gold in the Tokyo test event earlier in the year, came across the line in 01:09:59 to finish 11th having suffered a puncture early-on on one of his bike laps to knock him out of contention.
Joe Townsend and Jade Hall were the final athletes in the GB trisuit to take to the course for the Paratriathlon Championships. Townsend made it a hat-trick of punctures as he finished sixth before Hall took third spot and the team’s final medal of the Championships.
Jonathon Riall, British Triathlon Paratriathlon Head Coach, said: “With over half the team coming home with medals, it was a really successful day of racing in Valencia. In tough conditions with the weather and a series of punctures, it was great to see such strong performances across the classifications and for that to be translated into medal success.”