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Quadrathlon Victory for Russell

Helen Russell wins her first ever quadrathlon

Last Updated: Sep 6, 2016 08:48pm
Evesham, Wychavon
By Helen Russell
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Wychavon Sporting Hero 2016, Helen Russell took the top spot this weekend at the Shrewsbury Quadrathlon.

Worcestershire triathlete, Helen Russell is celebrating after taking the top spot in her first ever Quadrathlon at the British Quadrathlon Association trophy race in Shrewsbury. Comprising of the four disciplines, swim, kayak, bike and run, a quadrathlon is a real test of an athlete’s endurance and ability across four challenging sports.

The event started at the West Midlands Showground and saw competitors swim 500m and kayak 4.2km in the River Severn, cycle 23km out to Baschurch and back and before finally running 5km in the showground.

Russell, who was racing for Worcester Canoe Club had a great swim quickly creating a gap between her and the other competitors and exited the river in first place. Being a novice quadrathlete, unlike the experienced racers she had to put on a buoyancy aid in transition which cost her time and so she entered her kayak down in fourth place. Despite only starting kayaking this April just one competitor overtook her on the 4.2k route and so after the second discipline Russell was [censored] in 5th place.

As a former World Champion duathlete, Russell’s strength is on the bike and she caught the other competitors one by one, until finally overtaking the lead woman, the 2015 British Quadrathlon National Trophy Series winner Jean Ashely at the 4.5 mile mark. Russell then pushed hard to build up what she hoped would be a decisive lead, covering the 23km route in 41.10 and entered the final transition 1min 51 secs ahead of second placed Kate Burgoyne from Hereford Triathlon Club. With this lead Russell could relax slightly on the 5km run but still extended her lead significantly to finish in 1.37.37, ahead of second placed Burgoyne in 1.41.41 and third placed Ashley in 1.44.29.

Helen says, “After achieving my goals in duathlon and triathlon I needed a new challenge this year to motivate me and decided to learn how to kayak in the Spring. For me this competition was supposed to be just a test event to learn about quadrathlon and so to take the victory was a wonderful surprise.”

Russell now plans to continue to improve her kayaking with Worcester Canoe Club and aims to target the British Quadrathlon Trophy races next season

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