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Wolfe goes long way for glory

Joyce Wolfe from Cork won the over-30 class at the World Long Distance Triathlon Championships in the German Alpine town of Immenstadt -- and got a cow bell for her efforts!

Wolfe was one of seven Irish triathletes taking on the 4km lake swim, 130km cycle and 30km run.

With the hill on the cycle leg so steep that many were forced to walk and temperatures soaring to over 25 degrees, the finish line was a welcome sight for all those who survived.

Wolfe came home first of the Irish in 103rd place overall with a time of eight hours 44 minutes and 42 seconds.

First of the men was Michael Duffy in 8:44.41. Katie Cooke, with a time of 8:55.19, was ninth in the over-30 class, while Kay Hack finishing in 9:28.18 was 14th over 45.

"It was quite honestly a bike course for lunatics, but in the end the pain was worth it," said Wolfe afterwards.

At the Brian Boru Tri Challenge in Killaloe, Mairtin Grealish came home first on the exacting sprint course which consisted of a 750m lake swim, 22km cycle and a 7km run, climbing high above Lough Derg.


Grealish took full advantage when Mike Yelverton suffered a puncture and Shane Scully picked up a leg injury when leading by three minutes.

Triathlete turned runner Lizzie Lee returned to her roots to finish first of the women for a second year. Second was Lynne Algar, who had held on to Lee until the run.

Triathlete Laura Casey will be first to compete of the Irish team at the inaugural Youth Olympic Games in Singapore next Sunday. With the women's triathlon opening the games, the winner will receive the first ever Youth Olympics gold medal.

Among the nations competing, 12 have never participated in triathlon in the Olympic Games.

Athletes will complete a sprint- distance triathlon (750-metre swim, 20km bike, 5km run), with the men's event a day later.

A novel addition to the programme is a 4xmixed relay triathlon which will take place next Thursday. Teams of two women and two men from each Continental Federation will take part in this event, with each of the four participants completing a 250-metre swim, 7km cycle and 1.7km run relay style.