SARAH MATTHEWS has returned from the ITU world duathlon championships in Spain on a high after doing well enough to qualify for next year’s event.
The Fernhurst athlete was taking part in only her fifth duathlon and second road event but came seventh in her age category and fourth GB finisher in age at the Pontevedra event.
Matthews, who is also a Chichester businesswoman, said: “Everyone ahead of me had raced at European and or world championships before. I race sprint distance which at the worlds was a 5km run, 20km bike then a 2.5km run. At all the other events I’ve competed in before had a longer 2nd run – usually 4km-5km.
“It was an amazing experience to be part of the 341-strong GB age group team – 185 were in sprint races and the remainder did standard distance.
“Talking to athletes from other nations I learned our qualification criteria are far tougher than those of other nations, but as a result our athletes win many of the medals - 53 in total at these championships.
“I’ve learned masses mixing with athletes from all over the world.”
Matthews has taken part in the Goodwood duathlon twice – coming second in her age category in 2013 and winning her age group in 2014.
She came second in the qualifying duathlon at Oulton Park in March this year and fourth at the Althorp duathlon in October last year.