Birtwhistle continues strong form with win in Oceania Cup

LAUNCESTON triathlete Jake Birtwhistle continued his winning form by taking out the ITU Triathlon Oceania Cup at Mooloolaba, in Queensland today.

 One of Triathlon Australia's rising stars, Birtwhistle paced himself well during the race before unleashing his powerful running leg on the way to a convincing victory.

The former track and field star who is now a full-time triathlete based in Wollongong under international coach Jamie Turner.

 ``I was feeling good today and I had to keep reminding myself not to go too hard too early,'' said the Australian Youth Olympic champion and OTU Oceania champion.

 ``I tried to stay away from the front, which is hard for me but I was able to sit in the pack for a bit and put the pressure on in the second lap.''

 Birtwhistle was able to time his run to perfection over the back end of the 1500-metre swim, 40km bike and 10km run and powered away to win it in 1 hour and 52.07 seconds.

The race victory sets Birtwhistle up for his first major international escapade, starting with the Chengdu World Cup in China on March 23.

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