Laurent Vidal is one of the steadiest men on the ITU circuit. He consistently breaks into the top 10 at World Triathlon Series events and recorded his first World Cup win last year in Mooloolaba, as well as his second WTS podium in Sydney and a fifth-place finish at the London Olympics. He looks to be in top form again this year, coming off a fourth-place finish in Auckland. We recently caught up with the Frenchman, who has a love for the Kiwi lifestyle and running in headbands, to ask him a few fast and furious questions.
What is your favourite ITU race?
“It’s Auckland. It’s my favourite just because I think the course is great. The culture of triathlon in New Zealand is, as well, really big and it’s kind of a second home for me. Since there are no ITU races in France, I like really much Auckland.”
Do you remember your first triathlon?
“It was in Sète. It was on the advice of my swim coach. I owe him a big favour, I guess, because this is how I started. I loved it straight away. It was a 20 minute race. I put my t-shirt on after the swim, so it was a bit rough, but I loved it.”
Where will you be in five years?
“Hopefully with a successful Olympic campaign after Rio. That is the goal. The year after Rio, focusing on Long Distance is what I want to do. We will see what happens.”
Favourite training destination?
Best holiday destination?
Favourite motivational song?
Anything with a good beat and German techno music
Favourite post-training snack?
Garden Coffee in Christchurch
What is your favourite training drill?
“I like all of triathlon really. There is a lot of variety and you don’t get bored of everything. What I like the best is a long tempo ride. That would be anything from 30-45 minutes at a good steady state.”
What is your least favourite training drill?
“If I have to say worst it would be a lactate swim like a fast 100 with a long recovery.”
What advice would you give an age-group triathlete?
“Keep looking long term, ot one day to the other. Even more so when you are an age-grouper because you do it first for fun and it’s important to remember we do it for the long haul.”
It all came down to an electrifying final finishing chute rush, but France's Laurent Vidal sprinting strategy paid off with his first ITU World Cup win ahead of Brad Kahelfeldt and David Hauss in Mooloolaba.
Australia's Emma Moffatt and France's Laurent Vidal have beaten tough competition and windy weather to claim the titles at the Geelong ITU Sprint Triathlon Premium Oceania Cup.