London 2012 Olympic Games: What the women said pre-race

London 2012 Olympic Games: What the women said pre-race

By Merryn Sherwood on 03/08/12 at 4:39 pm

We spoke to some of the athletes who will compete in the Women’s Triathlon Competition at the London 2012 Olympic Games, about their pre-race preparations, how the race will pan out and their own chances on the Hyde Park course.

Erin Densham (AUS)
On being one of the favourites:
“I don’t really consider myself one of the favourites in a way, there is actually so many girls that could win the race…I’m really happy just to be on the startline and I’ll be going there to obviously do the best that I can.”

On her journey from Beijing to London; that included heart surgery in 2009:
“I guess for me it’s nice to be healthy, not necessarily racing…and all this is a bonus on top of it. I really enjoy what I’m doing and I want to do it well and so that’s what I’m trying to do. This year, I’ve always known it’s been there, but I just couldn’t seem to get there, but finally I’m actually getting to where I guess I could potentially be and who knows where that could be, I’m still finding it. I’m just really happy to be back.”

Kate McIlroy (NZL)
On race tactics:
“I think it will be interesting, everyones tactics, I think there will be a bit of a break after the swim, there might be a big chase group and then the run is going to really fast and technical.”

Helen Jenkins (GBR)
On how London compares to her first Olympics in Beijing:
“Very very different situations, in Beijing I was a pretty young athlete and just so pleased to have even made the Games. It was just about being there and being an athlete, coming into London 2012, it’s all I’ve been thinking about for the last probably three years and it’s been about winning a medal, so it’s very different….I think being in London, it feels like home.”

On her win in last year’s ITU World Triathlon Series London event:
“It gives me great confidence to know I have won on this course and also winning earlier on this year in San Diego, over the past few years I’ve had a lot of seconds and thirds but to stand on top of the podium over the last couple of years has really given me the confidence to know that if I get it right on the day, if everything plays into my hands, that I can win. In the end you just have to your best and hope that’s going to be enough.”

Aileen Morrison (IRL)
On race preparation:
“I think for us as athletes, we race quite a lot and we used to the media and the hype and the attention and the different things are one us for racing, but in London we have to treat it like any other race. Otherwise we would get so excited we wouldn’t be able to race…We just have to treat it like another race, even though it is the most important race.”

Vicky Holland (GBR)
On the competition:
“One of the beautiful things about triathlon is that you can never really sure who is going to do what on what day, so you’ve got to prepared for pretty much everything and anybody to come out of the woodwork and have a really impressive performance. It’s always been said that the winners at the triathlon at the Olympics have never necessarily been the favourites…many of the girls are looking in great shape as you would expect, it’s the pinnacle of the sport and not necessarily one person to watch, probably everybody.”

Emma Moffatt (AUS)
On her chances:
“I guess I haven’t had the greatest last few years and I’m definitely not expected to win the race but for me it’s the expectations that I put on myself and the confidence that I’ve had from my training. In the women’s race these days you never really know who is going to win, there is such a high quality of field, so just to have my name up there a little bit it’s nice to know that I’m still in the mix for things.”

Fabienne St Louis (MRI)
On being the first triathlete from Mauritius to qualify for the Olympic Games:
“I’m very proud and I am very very happy to go to London, it was my dream since I was very little when I started triathlon and my dream came true so I am very very excited.”

Kate Roberts (RSA)
On how she will approach the race:
“I mean, that’s the way you’ve got to treat it, it’s just another race. I thought the race would be different in Beijing but it was just another race. Obviously going in there is a lot more hype about the race, but the actual race, it’s exactly the same, nothing changes. So the main thing is not to go in overwhelmed thinking oh this is the Olympics, it only happens every four years and everyone is watching, it’s your time to shine…it’s exactly like any other race.”

On her goals:
“You know what, a medal is a far shot, but hey you are going there and I’m going there in my hope of winning a medal for my country and I’m going to give it everything. Who knows, it could be life changing, it could not, you have to give it everything. You just want to be in the mix. At the end of the day I want to cross that finish line and know that I gave everything in this race and everything in the four years leading up to it and absoloutely no regrets over the whole Olympic cycle.”

Emma Jackson (AUS)
On going to her first Olympic Games:
“Everyone I’ve spoken to says that the Olympics is a once in a lifetime event…so I have spoken to Brad (Kahlefeldt) and Emma (Moffatt) who have been there before and know what it’s all about, so they just told me to treat it like any other race and don’t let it get to me too much.”

Paula Findlay (CAN)
On her form:
“I don’t really know what to expect myself really because I haven’t raced these girls for a year, but my training is going really well and I have a fantastic team of people behind me so I’m optimistic and excited.”

On training with Simon Whitfield (CAN):
“Simon has been a huge huge part of my journey especially over the past two months…he’s kind of just taken me on and allowed me to follow him around for the past two months like an annoying little sister, so it’s pretty cool. I appreciate everything, he’s been above and beyond helpful. Training beside him is motivating… He’s been to three Olympics and not just been there, but won medals.”

Ainhoa Murua (ESP)
On competing in her third Olympic Games:
“I think I have more experience and I know what the Olympics is, I think the race is similar to other world triathlon series but all around the race is bigger, I have had more experience of this and this is good.”

The Women’s Triathlon Competition at the London 2012 Games gets underway at 9am (local time) on Saturday August 4. Check listings with your national Olympic broadcasters for broadcast times. There will not be a live stream or live timing available from ITU, but live text updates will be available through triathlon.org/live and on Twitter, through @ITUonline and @triathlonlive

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