By Mick Jensen
Mount Hutt College student Brea Rodderick is chasing her triathlon dreams and will represent New Zealand at the Triathlon World Championships in Australia next month and then the Youth Olympic Games in Argentina in October.
The Year 11 student qualified to compete by crossing the line first in the female youth section at the Oceania Championships in March.
The talented multi sporter is following a rigorous training programme to ensure she is in top shape for both competitions and is clocking up many hours of swim, bike and run training.
In recent weeks her training has meant early morning swims of around 90 minutes, followed by post-school runs or bike training.
In a typical week she runs 50km and spends seven to eight hours on the bike.
Brea said she was “so excited” to be competing for her country.
“It’s my first time formally representing New Zealand and it will be great to put on the vest.
“The Youth Olympics, in particular, will be an amazing experience for me.”
She would also take part in a team tag relay event at that competition and would be part of a combined, mixed team featuring two Australian and two New Zealand triathletes.
Brea will swim 750m, bike a 20km course and tackle a 5km run in both of her international competitions.
She said triathlon for her was about “the challenge of multi sport” and also the rewards, like overseas competition.
“My dream is to compete at the full Olympics one day, but that day is a long way away.”
Brea will need to self fund both of her overseas trips and has been busy applying for grants, including with the Inspire Foundation, to help ease the financial burden.
A recent donation page contributed $2500 to her effort and another may be set up.
Her triathlon dreams have been well supported by her parents and also by Mount Hutt College.