South Africa’s Richard Murray has started the 2015 World Triathlon Series in Abu Dhabi with two pleasing results.
His podium placing hints at a season that may well top last year’s already exceptional one. But it’s the second result, a much-wanted improvement in his swimming, that will give him most hope for his 2016 Olympic aspirations.
Murray finished the WTS Abu Dhabi sprint race in 52 minutes and 50 seconds. Spaniard Mario Mola won in a time of 52.32 and Frenchman Vincent Luis was second in 52.45.
Avoiding a sprint finish, Mola took off with a kilometre to go, to earn himself a safe lead and victory. Luis dropped Murray mere metres from the line.
“It was amazing. I could not have asked for more in the first race of the year. My swimming is going in the right direction. Unfortunately, I had a bit of a fumble coming out of the water and had a bad first transition. I almost crashed during the cycling leg when somebody cut in front of me. The front wheel buckled, but I managed to keep going. That was my drama for the race. It was a good run and I could see Mario and the others put in some hard miles on the running. My focus had been more on the swimming.”
Murray said it was a privilege having so many South Africans at the race was. “To stand on the podium in front of so many South Africans made it even more special.”
Murray is off to Auckland for another training camp with his coach Joel Filliol. The second WTS race is at the end of March in Auckland, New Zealand.
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