Three’s the magic number for GC2018 Triathlon
The Triathlon is set to make history in more ways than one at GC2018 and with excitement building, the courses were announced on Tuesday 3 October.
Featuring three adrenaline-fuelled events, individual, para and mixed team relay, athletes will race to win a place on the podium.
International Triathlon Union (ITU) Technical Delegate Shanelle Barrett knows the sport better than anyone, spending several years competing on the ITU Triathlon World Series circuit before transitioning into officialdom.
With over 29 years experience in triathlon, including officiating at the London Olympics, the New Zealander says GC2018 will be a unique event for all involved, starting with the program schedule.
“One exciting thing here for triathlon is the women will have the first medal of the Commonwealth Games, which for me is very exciting.”
Para Triathlon will be contested for the first time in Commonwealth Games history at GC2018 and it’s a milestone Barrett says is great for the sport, athletes and fans.
“Those athletes are so inspiring and to see them compete here on the same course is fantastic.
“Those guys are amazing, they’re going from the pontoon in their day chairs to the swimming, then into their handcycles and then into their racing chairs as well.
“It’s tough, certainly not easy, there’s so many different variables for them to think about and it’s so inspiring.”
With the mixed team relay also featuring on the program, GC2018 will have the triathlon world’s attention.
“We’ve got the individual events, then the Para-Sport, then the mixed relay.
“Having all of those on two days is really exciting, it’s a great spectacle for our sport.”
There’s a highly technical side to triathlon and Barrett says there’s a lot to consider when reviewing the course athletes will navigate on their way to the finish line.
“I’m selected by the International Triathlon Union as their representative to be here to understand the sport and give my point of view on what the ITU are going to be looking for, the look and feel of the event and also making sure the athletes are going to enjoy their experience.”
“It’s going through the course in detail, making sure it’s going to work for the athletes, that they’re going to be safe on the course but also have a challenge at the same time.”
“Then it’s working through all the field of play areas and also the back of house where the athletes are going to go, to make sure they’re ok, their coaches are happy and that they enjoy their experience on the Gold Coast.”
As for the GC2018 Triathlon course, which will start and finish at Southport Broadwater Parklands, it’s got Barrett’s seal of approval.
“What we’re delivering and what they’re going to have here is world class.”