NSW/ACT Pathway athletes excel in Orange

28 Nov 2023

Photo Credit: Erica Galea

In true Orange fashion, Gosling Creek Reserve offered us four seasons in one day as 140 + of NSW’s and ACT’s best Junior, Youth and U23 Athletes undertook the annual pilgrimage to the triathlon mecca that is the NSW/ACT Super Sprint & Mixed Relay Championships, hosted by Orange Triathlon Club.

Gosling Creek Reserve is one of NSW’s best venues for triathlon. It features a safe swim in the dam, a man-made beach leading directly into transition before heading out onto a fully enclosed ‘Crit Track’ for the cycle leg, ending with a safe and spectator friendly run course.

Race weekends of this nature are a vital part of the NSW/ACT Development Pathway, as they allow athletes to learn critical lessons required to mould their triathlon careers including building resilience, grit and draft legal racing in all kinds of conditions. Experiences at events of this nature provide lasting learning outcomes and make them more equipped and skilled in the long run.

A full weekend of racing was offered including participation in the Mixed Relay team format of the sport, which made its Olympic debut in Tokyo 2020. An exciting battle amongst the teams  took place, as they battled it out for the State Mixed Relay Championship Title.

The two-day festival offered something for everyone, inclusive of Para athletes from the Development Pathway, draft-legal racing for those in the pathway and non-drafting events for those not yet draft legal endorsed.

Adding to the hotly contested competition is the unique mixed gender environment, which ensures that every athlete taking part has close competitive races against athletes of similar capability, rather than based on age group.

The event also doubled up as Race 3 of the Billigence NSW/ACT Pathway Series (with double points up for grabs).

Day 1 (Saturday) Wrap Up- Mixed Relay Champs & Triathlon/Aquathlon Heats

Athletes first hit the water in the Mixed Relay Championship of NSW and the urgency, speed and skills shown just continue to impress! The teams comprised of athletes from various Regional Academies of Sport, the Emerging Talent and U23 Squad, ROSTA and TACTTA. 

The Junior and U23 Teams were the traditional 4 person team. Unlike the regular format the youth teams were chosen in 3’s which allowed the inclusion of every single athlete who wished to compete, ensuring no ‘orphans’ were left out.

CLICK HERE to view the full JUNIOR/U23 results from the 2023 NSW/ACT Mixed Relay Championships

CLICK HERE to view the full YOUTH results from the 2023 NSW/ACT Mixed Relay Championships

The afternoon featured an Enduro Triathlon format (swim, bike, run, swim, swim, bike run) and aquathon (swim, run, swim, run).

Day 2 (Sunday) Wrap Up- NSW/ACT Super Sprint Championship Finals

Athletes were graded into five finals based on their cumulative times after competing in an Aquathon and an ‘Enduro’ style event on the Saturday afternoon. The results (times) of those events were added together and all athletes were ranked into 5 finals, which were run on Sunday.

To say the A-Final was hotly contested was an understatement, and for those who were lucky enough to be out on course, spectators were privileged to see some amazing athletes in action. No doubt the current and future stars of our sport, showing off all the skills and hard work they’ve put in over winter.

The A Final was a super close finish between two absolute future stars of the sport in Logan Campbell (Warringah TC) and Mitchell Blackbourn (Hills TC / Illawarra TC). In the end it was a 10 second time penalty given to Campbell that was the difference in the end, with only 1 second separating them both.

Taking out the female overall victory was Grace Kells (Northern Suburbs TC). She overcame a slow swim (by her lofty standards), held tight and fought back in the Cycle, running her way to victory to take the outright win.

Particularly exciting at this year’s event in Orange was the continued inclusion of Paratriathletes. It’s wonderful to see these inspiring para-athletes joining us and gaining some superb experience for their triathlon careers.

Join us in congratulating the placegetters of the NSW/ACT Super Sprint Championships

Event and Position Name Squad Affiliation Club
PTS3 Jack Gibson IAS Shellharbour TC
U23 Male 1st Logan Campbell U23 Squad Warringah Triathlon Club
U23 Male 2nd Cooper Lee U23 Squad Maitland Triathlon Club
U23 Male 3rd Zane Galea U23 Squad Cronulla Triathlon Club
U23 Female 1st Grace Kells U23 Squad Northern Suburbs Triathlon Club
U23 Female 2nd Caitlin Sendt U23 Squad Hills Triathlon Club
Junior Female 1st Grace Henry U23 Squad Brighton Baths Athletic Club / Balmoral Triathlon Club
Junior Female 2nd Madeline Platt Hunter Academy of Sport Maitland Triathlon Club
Junior Female 3rd Ella Hardie ETS Warringah Triathlon Club
Junior Male 1st Mitchell Blackbourn U23 Squad Hills Triathlon Club
Junior Male 2nd Kyle Mason ETS Cronulla Triathlon Club
Junior Male 3rd Casper Larkin ETS Hills Triathlon Club / Pulse Performance
Junior B Female 1st Madeline Platt Hunter Academy of Sport Brighton Baths Athletic Club / Balmoral Triathlon Club
Junior B Female 2nd Ella Hardie ETS Northern Suburbs Triathlon Club
Junior B Female 3rd Skye Bell ETS Illawarra Triathlon Club
Junior B Male 1st Kyle Mason ETS Cronulla Triathlon Club
Junior B Male 2nd Rhys Olson Keating ROSTA Pulse Performance
Junior B Male 3rd Harry Fraser HAS Illawarra TC
Youth Female 1st Charli Lehmann ROSTA Warringah Triathlon Club
Youth Female 2nd Ronia Warszawska ROSTA Cronulla Triathlon Club
Youth Female 3rd Petra Fransen ROSTA Cronulla Triathlon Club
Youth Male 1st Alex Eason WSAS Hills TC
Youth Male 2nd Leif Ingwersen ROSTA Hills Triathlon Club / Pulse Performance
Youth Male 3rd Zwi Ratajczak ROSTA Cronulla Triathlon Club


CLICK HERE for full individual results for the NSW/ACT Super Sprint Championships in each category

Thank You to the following individuals and groups who were instrumental in the event’s success. We are incredibly grateful for your support of our NSW/ACT pathway program and athletes.

  • Dave Hunter and the entire Orange Tri Club volunteer workforce for once again conducting a smooth and seamless event, worthy of a State Title.
  • Billigence, our series partner, for their ongoing and continued support of the sport of triathlon. We love their passion, their commitment, and their dedication. Thanks Jana and Michael!
  • Robyn Low-Hart, our NSW/ACT Coach and Pathway lead, for her ongoing dedication and commitment to make race events like these happen and to all the parents for a tough but worthwhile weekend
  • The coaches, without whom there would be no athletes progressing. As AusTriathlon remarked, we are blessed with the depth and quality of local NSW based and ACT based coaches, which stands to progress the sport into the future.
  • Parents and families of the athletes who invest time, money and energy into providing opportunities for our amazing crop of Youth, Junior and U23 athletes to learn and grow as young people and athletes through triathlon.
  • The learning outcomes were enhanced by the presence of our ever-expanding AusTriathlon Technical officials, led by Race Referee Thomas Warren (Macarthur Triathlon Club) and supported by Sue Horsburgh (Hills Triathlon Club). Particularly pleasing was that three new Technical Officials complete their ‘Field of Play Assessments’, two of whom hailed from the host club (Orange TC) which will have added benefit in supporting the Orange Triathlon Club when delivering local events in the Central West. We thank Simon Lum (Orange TC), Megan Goodwin (Orange TC) and Katie Schwarzel (Macarthur TC) and David Apps (Maitland TC) who rounded out our technical team. The focus of the event remains on education and teaching athletes that races of this nature are the ideal opportunity to make mistakes, learn and grow as athletes. Job well done!
  • We are also very grateful to the two AusTriathlon employees who attended including Aileen Reid (National Talent Development Coach) and Liam O’Neill (NSW Performance Centre Head Coach). Both Aileen and Liam have extensive experience and know what it takes to turn a junior athlete into an Olympian. Their attendance is vital as it reinforces the alignment between the Development pathway in NSW and the Aus Tri HP program, demonstrating the importance of strong relationships with our National Body.
  • We were privileged to have NSWIS Professional Triathlete Tilly Offord on the mic commentating the races. She did a superb job and it was great to see an alumni of the NSW Development Pathway give back to this event which has helped shaped her to be one of Australia’s top female triathletes.

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