Docherty Gunning To Secure Olympic Spot In London

Published: Wed 3 Aug 2011 10:05 AM
August 3, 2011
For immediate release from Triathlon New Zealand
Docherty Gunning To Secure Olympic Spot In London
Bevan Docherty leads the Kiwi charge to qualify for the London Olympic Games at this weekend's round of the ITU Dextro Energy World Champs Series, in an event that serves as New Zealand's number one selection race.
For Docherty and the other Kiwi high performance athletes, coaches and support staff this weekend has been years in the making.
The men's race starts just after midnight Sunday night (NZT) with Docherty calm in the face of his biggest challenge this year, knowing he is finding form at the right time of the season.
"Over the last few weeks I've really come into some good form, so I'm very excited about the race in London. Obviously I'm after a top 10 finish to qualify for the Games however, I'm always in these races to win. Olympic gold is the only medal that eludes me so there's no point in lining up for just a top 10."
Docherty understands better than most the pressure an Olympic Games can bring, let alone the pursuit of qualification and doesn't underestimate the task ahead on Monday morning.
"My training has been going really well here in California, and finally my body has just accepted the punishment I give it, so I'm looking to translate that into a good result. With so many countries having Olympic spots up for grabs in London this is definitely going to be the most competitive race of the year, with a lot of tactics and dynamics involved."
New Plymouth's Clark Ellice is focused on the biggest race of his life on the weekend and has been working especially hard this year on his swim, where he believes the big gains he has made can pay dividends in London.
"With London being a one lap swim this is crucial and so a lot of my energy has solely been swim-run focused this year. I need to swim to be in the race and then run to not let the race get away once the work has been done to get up there. I aim to make the lead pack and basically set myself up from there.
"I have sat down with Greg Fraine and my personal coach Jack Ralston and put together a pretty strong plan of sorting out my weaknesses in racing post Kitzbuhel and put in some serious man-miles to get me flying in time for London. I know I have the goods to nail London and with no one really standing out in my mind in the New Zealand men this year as being unbeatable, the goal to be number one Kiwi in London is a very realistic task to gain Olympic selection."
Meanwhile, James Elvery has bounced back quickly form a broken hand to race this weekend.
"I lost about 10 days there and missed a couple of races, but hopefully I have got things back on track. I raced well in Geneva a week ago for second. I didn't feel awesome, but with two more weeks up here at altitude in Font Romeu and some close supervision from coach Pete Pfitzinger, I hope to find another gear on Sunday. It will be tough to qualify but I'm just going to go out there, enjoy myself and give it everything."
Wanaka's Tony Dodds is another athlete backing up from injury, having just recently had 12 stitches removed from his arm and elbow after colliding with a car while training in Germany last month.
Also looking for an Olympic spot will be Kris Gemmell (Palmerston North) and Ryan Sissons (Auckland).
The formula to earn selection (subject to the NZOC) is simple, finish as one of the top two Kiwis and inside the top 10 overall in London and the Games are on. Alternatively finish in the top three New Zealanders and in the top five overall this weekend and that too will secure a nomination to the NZOC for London.
Full Tri NZ Olympic selection criteria can be viewed at:
ITU Dextro Energy World Champs Series
Elite Men
Monday 8th August, 12:06am NZT
Bevan Docherty (Taupo) World Ranking: 20
Ryan Sissons (Auckland) 24
Clark Ellice (New Plymouth) 38
James Elvery (Auckland) 40
Kris Gemmell (Palmerston North) 45
Tony Dodds (Wanaka) 74
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