THE past two weeks have seen local triathlete, Russell White, step up into senior triathlon competition.
The local athlete has had a successful junior career representing Ireland at European and World Championships, cumulating in a Junior Elite win in the London Triathlon last July.
Russell is a second year student at the University of Stirling and following an impressive third place finish in the British University Triathlon Championships he was selected as the sole member of the Irish University triathlon squad to compete in the World University Games in Chinese Taipei .
This was Russell’s first major race of the season and his first ever Elite Olympic Draft Legal event. He was up against an older more experienced field, however he dealt with this along with the 35+ degree heat to finish in a superb 12th position.
Russell used his strong swimming background to his advantage, exiting the water in fourth which put him in the first group, a strong bike leg followed by a fast run solidified Russell’s position.
This was a huge confidence boost for the young athlete who travelled from Taipei to Osaka Japan to prepare for his next race in the ITU Asian Continental Cup race.
He spent the week preparing, determined to build on his performance from the week before. Once again Russell was able to utilise his swimming ability exiting the water in joint first place. The bike leg was very strenuous,however Russell exited second transition in a strong position in the lead group another good run allowed him to Power home in an impressive eighth position.
These two races have seen Russell take a huge step forward within his triathlon career. He is now returning to Northern Ireland to continue training with his main focus for the remainder of the season being on European U23 Championships (Aguilas, Spain) and World Championships (Aukland, New Zealand).