Moffatt keen for the start

Emma Moffatt can’t wait for the ITU world championship series to start.
Emma Moffatt can’t wait for the ITU world championship series to start. MIKE HEYDON

WOOLGOOLGA’S world champion triathlete Emma Moffatt will be part of an intimidating Australian women’s dream team when Sydney hosts the opening race of the 2011 Dextro Energy Triathlon ITU World Championship Series on Sunday.

Moffatt will be joined by Olympic champion Emma Snowsill and last year’s rapidly emerging Under-23 world champion Emma Jackson in what will be an absorbing home-soil battle.

Rounding out a full-strength Australian women’s team is the well-credentialed Annabel Luxford, fellow Queenslander Felicity Abram and Western Australia’s Felicity Sheedy-Ryan.

Despite defending her world championship last year, the 26-year-old local girl is easily starting this year’s campaign in better shape than she did 12 months ago.

Moffatt was lucky to make it to the start line at all last year after suffering a chipped shoulder from a pre-season bike fall.

The fact that she rallied to claim a typically gutsy third place in a thrilling sprint finish is testament to the courage she possesses.

She did admit though that racing at home is always an advantage when it’s time to dig deep.

“The atmosphere was wonderful last year – one of my most enjoyable races, considering the amazing backdrop and great home-town support,” Moffatt said.

Having claimed the national title in Mooloolaba a fortnight ago and getting the jump on her rivals for selection in next year’s Olympic team, Moffatt said that she’s just trying to concentrate on getting her 2011 campaign off to a good start.

“I just want to go out and enjoy the moment and try not to look too far ahead,” she said.

“This is a long season and everyone has an eye on Olympic qualification (for London in 2012) during the races later in the year.

“So it’s a matter of working hard but smart.”

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