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Top 10 for blistered Kate

Our Kate Roberts continues to claw her way up the ITU Triathlon world rankings, after yet another top 10 finish at the ITU World Championship Series Race in London at the weekend.

Roberts held her own until the run, when fatigue from the race in Hamburg a week ago and unhealed blisters took their toll and she lost contact with the leaders, but nevertheless finished eighth overall to improve her ranking to an all time high of seventh.

Conditions were perfect as the 68 women lined up on the start pontoon. From the gun, World Number One, Emma Moffit of Australia set off on a cracking pace in the 1500m swim with America’s Laura Bennet right on her shoulder.

This was the same tactic Moffit had used in Hamburg a week earlier to great success. They were joined by Sarah Haskins on the start of the second swim lap. Roberts was in the chase group behind them. Close enough not to be worried about the lead the three had when they headed in T1 after 19 and a half minutes in the water.

The trio was unable to force a break early on the bike which lead to a group of 24 women coming together, including Roberts. Once out on the 10km run, things went horribly wrong for Kate Roberts.

ÔÇ£London was by far the toughest field of the season so far, and my legs were still tired from racing Hamburg. I also picked up blisters in that race and they had not healed properly. Just after 3km I started to lose contact with the leaders and slowed down quite dramatically in the last 2km. I was just so ridiculousy tired and in such pain from the blisters. But I am happy that things are coming together for me now and I am placing consistently high up the field now.ÔÇØ

Canada’s Paula Findley took control of the run on the final 2.5km and went to record a shock win and the biggest of her career.

On the men’s side, Spain’s Javier Gomez made it two in a row after winning in Hamburg a week earlier. As in Hamburg the race came down to the run and Gomez had too much for the field as he begins to find the form again that saw him dominate most of 2008. Amongst the South African contingent, Claude Eksteen withdrew after the swim, Erhard Wolfaadt had the fastest bike leg of the whole field and Hendrik De Villiers is making steady progress in his attempt at a top 10 placing at the Grand Finale in Budapest in September.

After losing almost a minute on the swim, Wolfaardt found himself with the race leaders on the last of the 4x10km bike circuit. That effort clearly took a lot out of him, as his run was now where near his best.

De Villiers finished 26th and was very happy with his result. ÔÇ£There is still a lot of work to be done, but I am getting better with each race. My all round performance on Sunday was better than in Hamburg a week ago, so I am very encouraged. My training times are improving and I’m getting better in the races, so it looks as if I am getting back to where I was 2008 when I finished fourth at World Championships.ÔÇØ


1 Paula Findley                   CAN                           1:51:48
2 Nicola Spirig                  SUI                           1:51:51
3 Helen Jenkins                  GBR                           1:51:53
4 Andrea Hewitt                  NZL                           1:51:55
5 Laura Bennet                  USA                           1:52:34
8 Kate Roberts                  RSA                           1:53:04

1 Javier Gomez                  ESP                           1:42:08
2 Jonathan Brownlee         GBR                           1:42:14
3 Jan Frodeno                  GER                           1:42:30
4 Alexander Brukhankov RUS                  1:42:44
5 Mario Mola                  ESP                           1:42:46
26 Hendrik De Villiers SA                           1:43:57
48 Erhardt Wolfaardt SA                           1:46:24