Ellie Salthouse of Australia won the 16th annual Husky Triathlon, going wire-to-wire with women’s-best swim, bike and run splits to finish in 4:09:53 with a 2:01 margin of victory over Amelia Watkinson of New Zealand. 3rd place Annabel Luxford trailed by 4:34 at the race, which also served as the middle distance Australian championship.
Salthouse enjoyed her performance, telling PTO media, “My aim was to lead wire to wire and I did just that, I’m really happy with my performance”
Salthouse, a 27-year-old who has come into the limelight under the coaching of Siri Lindley, has established herself as a top talent after 2016 wins at Challenge Melbourne, Ironman 70.3 Boulder and Miami 70.3, 2018 wins at Boulder, Cozumel and Los Cabos 70.3s, and at the 2019 edition of Challenge Cancun.
Simon Hearn combined 7th-best swim and bike legs with a race-best 1:13:10 half marathon to finish in 3:48:27 with a 39 seconds margin of victory over 2016 Ironman 70.3 World Champion Tim Reed and 1:04 over 3rd-place Caleb Noble at the 16th middle distance Husky Triathlon.
Hearn, a 24-year-old physiotherapist from the Sunshine Coast of Australia, is establishing himself as a rising star Down Under after a win at the Hell of the West Triathlon earlier this year, 2019 wins at the Hervey Bay Triathlon and the Kraken 102 in Yeppoon, and a win at the 2018 Ironman 70.3 at Cairns.
Adding to the luster of the 16th annual Husky Triathlon, the Professional Triathletes Organization (PTO) added an additional $20,000 (Australian Dollars) to the existing $15,000 purse.
Salthouse outdueled Annabel Luxford, in her return to professional racing after a long hiatus, 24:55 to 24:56 for a one second lead, trailed by Grace Thek (+1:18), Amelia Watkinson, race favorite coming off her victory at the PTO-supported Hervey Bay (+1:21), Chloe Lane (+1:25), Renee Kiley (+1:40), Courtney Gilfillan (+1:43), and Kirra Seidel (+2:30).
After a women’s-best 2:19:53 bike split, Salthouse powered to a 15 seconds lead over Luxford at T2. Watkinson trailed by 1:53 in 3rd while Slater, Thek, Lane Kiley and Seidel fell 7:36 to 9:39 arrears.
On the flat and scenic run course, Salthouse passed Luxford in the early stages and never looked back. Watkinson passed Luxford midway through the run for second. On a women’s-fastest 1:22:13 run – Salthouse out-paced the next-best effort of Watkinson by six seconds. After her 4:09:53 finish, a female course record, Salthouse led runner-up Watkinson by 2:01 and third-place Luxford (who faded with a 1:26:38 run) by 4:34.
After a strong finish at Hervey 100, Aussie Trent Thorpe took the lead in the swim at Sharknet Beach in Jervis Bay with a 22:34 split which gave him a 37-seconds lead over Steven McKenna and 1:07 to 1:15 over a tightly bunched pack including Caleb Noble, Sam Betten, Tim Reed, Scott Bayvel, Tim Van Berkel, Joel Wooldridge and Hearn.
On the strength of his race-best 2:08:47 bike split, Betten took a 6 seconds lead on Van Berkel, 8 seconds on McKenna, 9 seconds on Reed and Noble, 12 seconds on Trent Thorpe, 13 seconds on Hearn, and 16 seconds on Joel Woolridge and Scott Bayvel. After a lightning fast transition, Tim Reed took an early lead on the run ahead of Sam Betten and Trent Thorpe.
On the run, the top four male athletes pushed ahead of the field, with Noble and Mckenna leading Reed before Hearn overtook Reed and then Mckenna just before the turn around on the two-lap course.
Hearn then took control early in the half marathon run on his way to a men’s-best 1:13:12 split which brought him to the line in 3:48:27 with a 39-seconds margin over Reed. Reed's second-best 1:14:08 split gave him a 25-seconds margin over 3rd place Caleb Noble. Noble's 3rd-best 1:14:23 run brought him home 1:56 ahead of 4th place Steven McKenna and 2:15 in front of 5th place Van Berkel.
Hearn told PTO media: “I felt good until about the 15km mark on the run and then I thought if they catch you, they catch you but I was able to hold on and I’m really proud of my effort today.”
Big Husky Triathlon – Australian Long Course National Championship
February 28, 2021
S 1.9 k / B 90 k / R 21k
Huskisson, NSW, Australia
1. Ellie Salthouse (AUS) S 24:55 T1 1:43 B 2:19:53 T2 1:13 R 1:13 R 1:22:13 TOT 4:09:53
2. Amelia Watkinson (NZL) SA 26:16 T1 1:41 B 2:20:27 T2 1:10 R 1:22:19 TOT 4:11:54
3. Annabel Luxford (AUS) S 24:56 T1 1:46 B 2:20:04 T2 1:01 R 1:26:38 TOT 4:14:27
4. Grace Thek (AUS) S 26:13 T1 1:49 B 2:26:15 T2 1:09 R 1:25:02 TOT 4:20:30
5. Courtney Gilfillan (Aus) S 26:38 T1 2:12 B 2:27:21 T2 1:17 R 1:27:48 TOT 4:25:19
6. Kirra Seidel (AUS) S 27:25 T1 1:57 B 2:26:48 T2 1:17 R 1:29:00 TOT 4:26:29
7. Chloe Lane (AUS) S 26:20 T1 1:44 B 2:27:14 T2 1:32 R 1:29:58 TOT 4:26:51
8. Penny Slater (AUS) S 28:02 T1 2:04 B 2:26:01 T2 1:20 R 1:31:35 TOT 4:29:03
9. Renee Kiley (AUS) S 26:35 T1 1:59 B 2:27:17 T2 1:35 R 1:35 R 1:34:13 TOT 4:31:41
1. Simon Hearn (AUS) S 23:44 T1 1:34 B 2:08:44 T2 1:13 R 1:13:10 TOT 3:48:27
2. Tim Reed (AUS) S 23:43 T1 1:37 B 2:08:38 T2 00:59 R 1:14:08 TOT 3:49:06
3. Caleb Noble (AUS) S 23:41 T1 1:29 B 2:08:48 T2 1:07 R 1:14:23 TOT 3:49 31
4. Steven McKenna (AUS) S 23:11 T1 1:35 B 2:09:11 T2 1:19 R 1:16:08 TOT 3:51:27
5. Tim Van Berkel (AUS) S 23:47 T1 1:46 B 2:08:22 T2 1:17 R 1:16:32 TOT 3:51:46
6. Scott Bayvel (AUS) S 23:43 T1 1:48 B 2:08:34 T2 1:15 R 1:16:44 TOT 3:52:06
7. Trent Thorpe (AUS) S 22:34 T1 1:29 B 2:09:58 T2 1:00 R 1:17:59 TOT 3:53:03
8. Sam Betten (AUS) S 23:42 T1 1:30 B 2:08:47 T2 1:05 R 1:18:32 TOT 3:53:37
9. Joel Wooldridge (AUS) S 23:49 T1 1:37 B 2:08:39 T2 1:20 R 1:22:04 TOT 3:57:29
10. Levi Maxwell (AUS) S 25:41 T1 1:27 B 2:10:36 T2 1:05 R 1:19:00 TOT 3:57:52