By Sports Reporter/Doha
The Qatar Cycling and Triathlon Federation (QCTF) has announced its first-ever age-group participation at an International Triathlon Union (ITU) World Championships. The event, on Australia’s Gold Coast, starts today.
Qatar is being represented by two members of Qatar’s QTRI Triathlon Club – Dr Nasser al-Mohannadi, the vice-president of QCTF, and Essa al-Maadeed. They are taking part in the World Championships in the age-group competition that runs parallel to the elite and junior competitions on Gold Coast’s Southport Broadwater Parklands venue.
Age-group competitions are held in five-year age bands from 20-24 all the way into the 70’s and 80’s and allow committed and passionate athletes to compete on the international stage against their peers. Unlike Elite athletes, age-group athletes are self-funded and have to balance their intensive training programmes alongside demanding career commitments.
At the ITU World Championships, Dr al-Mohannadi will be taking part in the sprint distance triathlon, which entails a 750m swim, a 20km bike ride and finishes with a 5km run. The second athlete, Essa al-Maadeed, will take part in the Olympic distance race, in the 25-29 age-group. The Olympic distance sees athletes do a 1500m sprint, 1500m swim, a 40km bike ride and a 10km run. Full details of the event coverage and live streaming and results can be found at www.triathlon.org
QCTF triathlon co-ordinator and age-group team manager, Bernard McCullagh says: “Nasser and Essa were selected due to their strong performances in the previous seasons triathlon national points series. They are the first such athletes to compete at an age-group world triathlon championships and hopefully will inspire other Qataris, young and old, to tackle the challenge next year.”
Professor Nasser al-Mohannadi, QCTF vice-president, said: “As with the great progress in our elite development programme, this marks a huge moment for federation. In 2019, we hope many more athletes will take up the chance to represent their nation in multisport competitions, and carry the national team colours with pride on the global stage.”
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