Jodie Stimpson today revealed her winter training was crucial to claiming victory in the opening race of the World Triathlon Series.
The Oldbury athlete finished second in last year’s series and made the perfect start to her 2014 campaign in Auckland yesterday ahead of the summer’s Commonwealth Games.
Stimpson was part of a breakaway led by New Zealand’s Nicky Samuels and Kate McIlroy before move ahead of the Kiwi pair in the run to claim her second WTS win in two hours, eight minutes and 34 seconds.
And Stimpson admitted training with Samuels gave her an insight into how the race might play out, and she made a decision to go with her and McIlroy when they broke.
She said: “I was lucky enough to do a few sessions with Nicky, so I knew how strong Kate was. And I saw Kate and Nicky and I knew that this was their selection race as well so I was like ‘I can’t let those two go, I’m not going to ease up, I’ve got to get there’ and that was definitely the defining moment in the race.
“The first lap it was like the worst lap, it was really terrible, I thought, God I hope my legs improve. That is definitely one of the toughest courses, I mean that’s what the Kiwis are known for, they are awesome riders and it was great to be in a breakaway with those girls. It’s pretty amazing really, I wish Non (Stanford) could have been here and I have to say quick recovery to her.
“I hope she gets back quickly and joins us on the start line, but I’m chuffed, I couldn’t be happier.”
The 25-year-old won the Kitzbuhuel WTS race last July on her way to finishing second behind GB team-mate Stanford in the overall 2013 standings.
She claimed four other podiums in a consistent season and started this year with third in the New Plymouth Sprint World Cup.
Yesterday, Anne Haug finished second while 2011 series winner Helen Jenkins claimed third, in her first race since the 2012 Olympics for Team GB.
In the men’s race GB’s Olympic bronze medallist Jonathan Brownlee was second, behind Spain’s Javier Gomez.