CALGARY’S RUSSELL PENNOCK LEADS STRONG CANADIAN JUNIOR MEN’S PERFORMANCE WITH
5TH-PLACE FINISH AT ITU WORLD TRIATHLON GRAND FINAL
Quebec’s Emy Legault logs top-15 in junior women’s race
(ISN) – EDMONTON—Calgary’s Russell Pennock gave his 20-plus contingent of friends and family
a lot to cheer about at Edmonton’s William Hawrelak Park with his fifth-place finish
at the 2014 ITU World Triathlon Grand Final on Friday.
“I knew I ran by a group of about 20 friends cheering their hearts out today, and I
just gave them a big smile. I knew I had the potential to be up with the top guys,
but I came in with no expectations and an open mind, looking to gain experience at
my first world championships,” said the young Albertan who won all four domestic
junior races this year, including the national championships.
Australia’s Jacob Birtwhistle and Frenchman Raphael Montoya were
shoulder-to-shoulder entering the finish area, but it was Montoya who took the win
in 56:27, one second ahead of Birtwhistle. Fellow Aussie Calvin Quirk captured third
Pennock, who was in the back of the nearly 40-strong lead pack throughout the bike
portion of the race, caught up to, and beat, his three Canadian teammates to finish
the course in 57 minutes, 5 seconds – good for fifth, and tying Canadian triathlon
trailblazer Paul Tichelaar’s junior World Championship performance in 2001, also
hosted on Edmonton soil. Joining Pennock in the top-10 was Xavier Grenier-Talavera
who finished ninth in 57:18, while Jeremy Briand finished 11th in 57:23, and Myles
Zagar slipped to 40th with his final time of 59:07.
In the women’s race two hours earlier, it was Ile Perrot, Quebec’s Emy Legault who
put down the top Canadian performance, finishing 14th in 1:05:00 after a difficult
“I had the best swim start of my life, with the girls at my hips, and within a few
strokes I felt a hand on my ankle and I just sank. By the time I got to the first
buoy, I was in full catch-up mode,” said the 17-year-old Canadian junior champion.
Taking advantage of the bike course’s long hill, Legault climbed up to catch the
chase group and narrowly averted disaster when two competitors went down in the
third bike lap.I was very nervous on the bike; that’s one area I want to focus my
training on, is the technical aspect of cornering. It’s a real strength the
Europeans have, and I want to learn from them.”
A European trio finished on the junior women’s podium, with Germany’s Laura
Lindemann crossing the finish line first in 1:02:35, slightly ahead of France’s
Cassandra Beaugrand, who was 3 seconds behind at 1:02:38. Beaugrand’s teammate
Audrey Merle took third in 1:02:44.
Though aiming for a top-10 finish, Legault is “very happy” with her 14th-place
result, and even surprised herself with the strength of her run. Teammates Elisabeth
Boutin and Kirsten Vergera finished 35th and 39th respectively, clocking in at
1:08:21 and 1:09:03.