Stimpson hopes to inspire new generation of triathlon stars

(8669635)

(8669635)

First published in Sport

OLDBURY'S triathlon star Jodie Stimpson wants more people to take up the sport following her gold medal successes at the Commonwealth Games.

Stimpson, a member of Oldbury Triathlon Club, bagged two golds in Glasgow with brilliant performances in the individual and team triathlon events.

She got England’s golden medal tally up and running on the first day of the Commonwealth Games last Thursday.

She became the tournament's first winner after successfully completing the 1,500m swim, 40km bike ride and 10km run in one hour, 58 minutes and 56 seconds to finish ahead of Canada's Kirsten Sweetland and team mate Vicky Holland.

Stimpson then added a second gold by winning the mixed team relay along with Holland and brothers Jonathan and Alistair Brownlee on Saturday.

The quartet each completed the 400m swim, 6km cycle, and 1.6km run course in a total time of one hour, 13 minutes and 24 seconds. South Africa took silver 49 seconds back with Australia third.

Stimpson held off the challenge of New Zealand's Nicky Samuels to hand Alistair Brownlee a nine second advantage going into the last leg.

She said: "It would be brilliant if just one extra person takes up triathlon because of my win.

"It is a fast growing sport that I love being involved with. I'd encourage anyone to get involved.

"It would be great if more young people from the area are inspired to take part."

People will have the chance to find out more about the sport and race next to Stimpson at Oldbury Triathlon Club's Jodie Stimpson Aquathlon this Sunday.

The event will take place at Sandwell Valley at 9am. It will have two distances, one aimed firstly at novices and another designed to test even the keenest athlete.

Speaking of her medal joy, Stimpson added: "I've had such great support from Oldbury. It has been brilliant. I'm really proud of where I come from so it's great to have this reaction from everyone now I'm back.

"I've got a great support network from my friends, family and coaches and it was great to see some of the people that couldn't make it to the games.

"I couldn't have gone into the games any more prepared than I was. My build up and preparation went really well, but I still had to go out and do it.

Stimpson's victory has been made all the more sweeter after she had to bounce back from the disappointment of missing out on selection for the London Olympics in 2012.

"Missing out on the Olympics was one of the worst things I've gone through in my career. I was devastated at the time but it was just what I needed," she added.

"If I'd have been selected I don't think I'd be in this position now. It made me realise that I needed to make changes. I changed my coach and the way I did things.

"I now want to go to the next Olympics, and there is still the World Championships too, but for now I just want to enjoy what I have achieved."

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