LOCAL Narooma high School PDHPE teacher Sally Jeffrey has just returned from Spain where she competed in the 2014 World Duathlon Championships in Pontevedra and winning a silver medal.
Sally was elated with her performance going into the competition she said she would have been happy to make the top five but the silver medal was way beyond her expectations. Sally did a personal best (PB) in all three legs of the run, bike, run duathlon.
In fact if Sally hadn’t lost 30 seconds in the first transition when she had trouble locating her bike among the 100’s of bikes there, she may well have won.
Sally took up triathlon three years ago at the age of 55 and in her first year of competition won the Elite Energy series which includes nine races up and down the south coast.
“It was overwhelming at the world championships a big step up from local events,” Sally said.
“When I got to the last leg I ran the fastest I have ever run in my life,” she said.
Australian women Jennifer Downie won gold in the race.
Sally was encouraged to qualify for the Australian Triathlon team, which she did but when she became aware that the duathlon championships were to be held in Spain, she and her husband Richard, also an accomplished athlete decided to try and qualify, which they both did.
Richard and Sally were planning to go to Europe and thought they could tie the duathlon in with their holiday.
Unfortunately Richard who had just won the Australian Off-Road Triathlon championship had a cycling accident two months prior to Spain. He broke his collarbone and was unable to train for the race.
“I train every day from one to three hours,” Sally said.
“My training consists of endurance cycling (60 to 80kms), running (12 to 15kms), interval and brick training,” she said.
Sally puts her success down to hard training and the support and encouragement from Richard and her family and hopes that she can be a role model for her students and others to remain active throughout their life.