Australia’s oldest triathlon, the Nepean Triathlon, started under grey skies. But with $76,500 in prize money on offer, the racing action was always going to heat up.

With Emma Moffatt out of the race due to a calf strain, all eyes were on her Commonwealth Games team mates, Emma Jackson and Ashleigh Gentle.

The unique handicap structure of the Nepean Triathlon gives the pro women a head start over the pro men with the first person to cross the finish line scoring a bonus $2,000 prize.

Gillian Backhouse was first out of the water and into transition with a 12 second lead over Gentle with Grace Deveson hot on her heels.

The new one lap bike course produced fast times across the entire field and allowed Gentle to assert her dominance with a split that was close to a minute faster than

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any other woman in the field.

By the time she arrived back into T2, the clouds were starting to clear and the temperature began rising quickly.

Jackson started the run in third and worked hard to eventually reel in Backhouse. But Gentle was too strong and took the victory in 1:35:06 – and the $14,000 winner’s cheque – ahead of Jackson in second (1:37:19) and Backhouse in third (1:37:44).

As for the handicap result, Aaron Royle started the run leg five minutes behind Gentle. By the end of the first lap, he had managed to close the gap significantly but Gentle ran a strong second lap and held off Royle to cross the line first and score a bonus $2,000 bonus prize in the process, and another win for the women in the handicapped race at Nepean.

Kudos to the Nepean Tri team for continually bringing excitement to the oldest triathlon in Australia and securing some great sponsors to enable a growing prize purse this year.

Of the women who raced Nepean, those backing up at this Sunday’s Noosa triathlon are Gentle, Sheedy-Ryan, Backhouse and Sarah Crowley.

Swim Bike Run Finish
Ashleigh GENTLE (51) 13:37 01:14 44:35 00:41 34:57 01:35:06
Emma JACKSON (53) 13:19 01:12 46:42 00:38 35:25 01:37:19
Gillian BACKHOUSE (45) 13:17 01:09 45:23 00:37 37:16 01:37:44
Felicity SHEEDY-RYAN (59) 14:11 01:07 46:17 00:41 36:26 01:38:44
Sarah CROWLEY (47) 14:34 01:16 46:28 00:44 37:28 01:40:32
Andrea FORREST (57) 14:30 01:09 46:15 00:45 39:33 01:42:13
Grace DEVESON (46) 13:31 01:21 46:43 00:46 40:27 01:42:50
Lisa MARANGON (44) 14:34 01:24 47:59 00:51 40:35 01:45:25

Text by Jen Brown

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Jen Brown

Registered Fitness Professional

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