Nelson pair take honours at Pegasus
Triathletes Hayden Squance and Matt Newberry made it a Nelson one-two in the fifth race of Triathlon New Zealand's national series in Pegasus, north of Christchurch, on Sunday.
Age group competitors raced twice over a super-sprint course, times being combined to find the overall winners.
In race one, 16-year-old Squance led the field from the 300m swim in the Pegasus lake, with Wanaka teenager Janus Staufenberg 10 seconds behind. Newberry, 36, was a further six seconds back.
With drafting legal on the fast 10km ride through the subdivision, Staufenberg latched on to the right wheels and with a fast transition led Squance into the run with a 5 second buffer, increasing this by another 5 seconds with a rapid 3km run around the lake.
At the finish line it was Staufenberg 29min 41sec, Squance 29min 51sec and Newberry 30min 12sec, setting the scene for race two over the same course.
After a break of 90min they were off again, with Squance leading the swim from Staufenberg by four seconds with Newberry 16 seconds further back.
The Nelson pair took no chances, with Squance riding off alone halfway through to establish a solid lead, consolidated by the fastest transition, to set off on the run with a clear advantage, while Staufenberg took one risk too many, falling on one of the turns.
Newberry was never out of the picture and put in a determined effort to haul back 36 seconds in the run.
Squance later admitted that his legs started to feel the pressure of the hard racing, but he felt he could hold out for the win.
At the finish it was Squance in 30min 1second. Newberry was 10 seconds behind, but closing fast with the quickest run of the day.
"I held back in the first race hoping to save something for the second," said Newberry.
"But I couldn't quite bridge the gap."
Once times for the two races were combined, Squance (59.52) had taken the honours from Newberry (1.00.23) and teenagers Latham Fairhall (1.00.44) and Staufenberg (1.01.31).
The result puts the pair at the top of their respective age groups in the national series.