27 October 2018

Swim star Richter shines on international para triathlon debut

Swim star Megan Richter stormed to victory on her international triathlon debut, winning one of six British medals at the ITU Paratriathlon World Cup in Funchal.

As well as winning the PTS4 category, the 17-year-old managed to beat the entire classification above hers - including Ukraine’s Alisa Kolpacky, who placed sixth at the Rio Paralympics.

As a member of the British para-swim team, Richter’s swim was unsurprisingly strong, coming out of the water almost three minutes ahead of the rest of her wave.

However, it was her cycling - the discipline she finds the hardest - that was perhaps most impressive, as she maintained her lead over Kolpacky and the other PTS5 athletes.

“I’m not used to how hard I can push [on the bike], I feel like I could have given more, but I think my technique was good,” says Richter, who won three medals at the IPC European Swimming Championships in Dublin earlier this year.

“On the run, I was just trying to give it everything. I think it went okay.”

But it was not an easy race for Richter, who, still new to the sport, struggled with hydration.

“I didn’t get any fluid in during the bike leg, so I felt very dry going into the run,” she added. “That’s something I need to work on going forwards. But I’m very happy with how it went overall.”

Members of British Triathlon's para talent team produced strong performances in Portugal

Across the other classifications the British Para Talent Squad, a team of relative newcomers to the sport, many of whom were making their international debut, there were more podium successes.

Stuart Meikle took his first international podium, winning the PTS2 category comfortably after a particularly strong swim.

In the PTS4 men Michael Taylor picked up his first international medal, winning bronze in a competitive field - including beating fellow British athlete Finley Jakes, who placed eighth.

Mark Conway, who finished just outside the medals on his international debut at the Commonwealth Games, won the men’s PTWC race, while fellow Brit Josh Landmann picked up bronze after being pipped on the line by Russia’s Semen Radaev. In the women’s PTWC race, Sophie Taylor snatched silver on her international debut.

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