Flora Duffy will attempt to win her third consecutive ITU World Triathlon Series event in Hamburg, Germany, this weekend, but will have to overcome the returning Andrea Hewitt to do so.
New Zealander Hewitt won the first two WTS races this season, in Abu Dhabi in March and on Australia’s Gold Coast in April, while Duffy was out injured. However, the Bermudian bounced back to win in Yokohama, Japan, in May, with Hewitt 23rd, and won again in Leeds, England 4½ weeks ago, as the Kiwi opted to stay home and train in Christchurch.
Hewitt returned to Europe three weeks ago to prepare for Hamburg and finished third in the Valance Triathlon in France last week, despite being penalised in one of her transitions.
“I had a good race, but was given a penalty for knocking my running shoes as I took my bike from the first transition,” Hewitt told the stuff.co.nz website. “I ran the first 2.5km in the lead but then had to stand down for ten seconds.
“I felt surprisingly good in the race. With the travel and time zone change, I actually fell asleep during the team meeting the night before the race. As soon as I get on the right time zone, I will be ready to go in Hamburg.”
Meanwhile, Duffy told the ITU website how she has been combining training with planning her wedding to Dan Hugo.
“I’ve been injured this first part of the year, so I it’s been kind of a down start to the year, but then I guess I got engaged, so it’s been a great year,” the Bermudian said. “It’s already topped 2016. I spend most of the time when I’m not training searching for the perfect wedding dress. Hopefully I’ll try some on after this race, when I get back to the US and Denver.
“We’re getting married in December in South Africa. For me it sounds like it’s around the corner, with everything flying by, but after speaking to a few people, I guess I do have a lot of time to plan, and the planning has already started.
“I can go back and forth to being super-excited and really into planning, in between training, and then at other times, I’m so exhausted, I’m like, ‘uggh, why do I have to plan this wedding? It’s too much, let’s just wait four years till after Tokyo, then I can get married!’”
Duffy is ranked sixth in the WTS rankings at present, with Hewitt fourth. Kirsten Kasper, of the United States, tops the rankings and will be aiming for her first WTS win in Germany after finishing third in Yokohama for her first WTS podium.