11 May 2018
Magnificent seven for Great Britain in World Paratriathlon Series
Lauren Steadman, Dave Ellis and George Peasgood crowned a near-perfect night for Britain’s para-triathletes after scooping a hat-trick of gold medals at the World Series in Yokohama.
The trio led the way atop the podium but the success didn’t stop there as Britain’s seven competitors secured a magnificent seven of top-three finishes.
That included a second place for Ryan Taylor in his category while Joe Townsend, Fran Brown and Steven Crowley all crossed the line in third in their particular races.
Paralympic silver medallist Steadman led from the front in Japan, opening the season on top in in the PTS5 competition – getting a monkey off her back in the process.
For two years the 25-year-old has been bidding to overturn the American Grace Norman and finally her moment came, stopping the clock in 1:06:39 to beat the Rio 2016 Paralympic champion to the line.
“I’m really pleased to be back on top of the podium, it’s been a while,” said the Brit.
“I wasn’t sure how the first race of the season would go.”
It sets me up nicely for the season ahead.
She wasn’t the only PTS5 victor in Yokohama however as Peasgood celebrated his maiden World Paratriathlon Series success – just a week after winning road race silver in the para-cycling World Cup.
With a gun-to-tape success, the Brit was under pressure from the fast runners but he held on for to win in a time of 1:00:12 – with Alexandr Ialchik and Chris Hammer in second and third respectively.
And with a win in his first race of the season, Peasgood admits he was a little surprised at being able to take top spot at this point in his calendar.
“It was awesome to come out here and perform as well as I did,” he said.
“I’ve had a tough few weeks travelling and racing so my legs didn’t feel too fresh but I’m in good shape.
“Being a swim-biker, it’s always going to come down to the chase on the run but thankfully I held off today.”
Peasgood backed up his success on the road last week with triathlon victory
Meanwhile, Ellis continued his year-on-year progression to take an impressive PTVI victory with guide Carl Shaw – defending the Yokohama title he won a year ago.
That ensured a third gold came Ellis’ way overall but it was the time on the clock that proved the most pleasing aspect of all, finishing more than a minute ahead of Jose Luis Garcia Serrano of Spain.
Alen Kobilica came third, with the Brit holding firm in a time of 1:00:57 to complete a superb and golden day for the visiting contingent.
He said: “It’s a great start to the season and I’m very happy to be back on top of the podium.
“It was good to be quicker in all elements of the race, producing a time two minutes quicker than last year.”
Townsend secured gold on the Gold Coast
Commonwealth champion Townsend keeps the form going
But that wasn’t all as Taylor took second in the PTS3 event, exiting the water first though he wasn’t able to hold off Australian Justin Godfrey who took the win.
Commonwealth champion Townsend maintained his good form with bronze in the PTWC classification, in a field that included all the medallists from Rio 2016.
The Brit finished sixth back then on his Paralympic debut but he wasn’t to be denied a place on the podium this time, crossing the line in 1:02:01.
Bronze medals also came the way of Crowley, in the PTS4 race, as well as Brown in the women’s PTS2 competition.