In the first ever Commonwealth Games Para Triathlon event Team England secured a golden double on the third morning of action in the Gold Coast as just 12 minutes separated victory for Joe Townsend and Jade Jones in the Men’s and Women’s Para-Triathlon events.
Former Royal Marine Commando Townsend put in a simply devastating performance to secure Team England’s first Gold in the Men’s Para Triathlon.
Having fallen behind the early leader Nic Beverage in the water, the courageous 30 year old from Eastbourne caught his Australian counterpart, who had led for the majority of the early stages, at the start of the second transition and from then on he left everyone else in his wake.
Just 12 minutes later it was the turn of Jones who won a hugely eventful women’s race. worked her way past her competitors in a supremely confident performance, and was able to take in the occasion, crossing the finish line with a comfortable margin of 1:49.
Joe Townsend said: “For me it was the perfect day. Everything I planned I did so I am really happy! I kept the gaps well in the swim and when I knew that worked, I knew the race was mine.
“Swimming was always going to be my weakest discipline and I knew that I was strong in the cycling so I just needed to keep my cool. As soon as I was in to the second triathlon in the lead I knew I was on target.
“If you look at the quality in the field, there’s world champions and top athletes so you can’t take away the intensity in a top venue, so yes I’m really happy.”
Speaking after her win, Jade Jones said: "I was always chasing which is tough mentally, but to push through was great. I swam really well and I have been working on my swimming for the past six months. Anybody who knows me knows how much this means to me.
"I have only been doing para triathlon for 18 months, and although I have made a lot of improvements, I still have a long way to go.
"I caught Lauren Parker on the second run lap, but anything can happen so I didn't celebrate until I crossed the finish line. I’m now going to go home to recover and prepare for the marathon."
Team England’s Mark Conway also impressed in the Men’s event and came in just shy of the medals finishing fourth. Lizzie Tench finished a respectable fifth in the women’s race.