Mount Maunganui to host NZ's best

Paul Miller from Triathlon Tauranga. Video and photos: Rosalie Liddle Crawford.

Click the image above to watch the video

Tauranga will play witness to some of New Zealand's finest athletes during the Eves Surfbreaker Triathlon, today at Mount Maunganui.

Triathlon Tauranga events and development manager and event organiser Paul Miller says more than 120 athletes will be participating in the event which runs from 7.30-10.30am.

"A majority of the athletes will compete in their age group category, but we are also joined by 20 of New Zealand's most elite athletes including three of our commonwealth games' team.”

Commonwealth athletes Ryan Sissons, Taylor Reid and Nicole Van der Kaay all join in on today's action.

He says they will be competing at the Gold Coast in April.

“Today they're competing in a one off elite race which starts at 9am and the age group race begins just after 7am.

“We've made this year's course a six legged triathlon, so athletes are going to swim, bike, and run, and then repeat that.”

He says some road closures will be in place until about 10.30am.

“The course begins at the Mount Maunganui Surf Club, with the biking taking place along Marine Parade. The swim is at Mount Main beach and the run is down past Banks Ave.

“The elite race on the other hand is short and fast and it's all confined in that the running takes place at Leisure Island.

“The beauty is that athletes get to swim in the surf, which is rolling at the moment, then you run along the beach to the finish for 700m.

“Even if you're not into triathlons you'll get to see some of New Zealand's best athletes swim, bike, and run, so come down and watch.”

The event has been running for more than 25 years, says Paul.

“We're trying to rejig the race and take it back to what it was. It used to be a part of a surf series that was hosted at various spots along the east coast of New Zealand including Ohope and Whangamata.

“This is the last remaining one in the series, so it is a pretty iconic event for Tauranga and we are keen to keep it going.”



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Looking back from Mount main beach. Photo: Alan Forward.

Send us your photos from around the Bay of Plenty. kendra@thesun.co.nz