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Kirsten Sweetland gunning it on the run. Credit: Jordan Bryden
Kirsten Sweetland gunning it on the run. Credit: Jordan Bryden

We caught up with three of Canada’s top finishers from the Edmonton World Triathlon Series event this weekend: Kirsten Sweetland, Dominika Jamnicky and Andrew Yorke to get their thoughts about their respective races.

Kirsten Sweetland, 10th:
Our 2014 Triathlete of the Year struggled through the early part of 2015 dealing with both a parasite and a bacterial infection. She is back racing now, though, and managed to get through the cold and wet conditions in Edmonton to claim a top-10 finish.

Today was probably the coldest race I’ve ever done. Despite a pretty bad swim I managed to ride really well with my friend Ashleigh Gentle and together we held a close distance to the front pack and then ran into 10th.

It’s my first top ten of the year and I’m very pleased considering all the struggles I’ve had this year! I’m definitely on a good trajectory going into the last race of the season!
Dominika Jamnicky, 15th:

Sunday was a pretty chilly and wet race day for the elites, but it didn’t dampen my spirits. I was excited to compete in my first WTS on home soil. The key of the race was to go in with no expectations and soak up the experience of world caliber racing. Overall the race was surreal and I don’t think I could ask for much more.
I managed to make up time from the swim with the fastest transition to make lead pack. During the ride I tried to do my fair share of work, alongside some big names. In T2 I guess I struggled a little less than most to get my shoes with the chilly temperature. I came out onto the run in second position and I just kept thinking about a few race cues that my coach and I have come up with. I held on as best as I could to finish 15th.

It was a very exciting day and I was happy to share it with my family, coach and teammates. The support team we had set up from Triathlon Canada at the event was incredible and I appreciate the time and effort put into it. I was very lucky to be a part of the team in Edmonton. I’m looking forward to racing again in a couple weeks at the U23 World Championships in Chicago.

Andrew Yorke, Eighth:
In the days leading up to the race I tried to expose myself to the cold as much as possible to prepare my body and mind for being comfortable with the conditions on race day.

In the swim I was around mid-pack up until 300 m, at which point I found some breathing room and started advancing through the field. Edmonton is classically one of the rougher swims because of all the turns, so I was aware that getting in one on one battles with guys was just going to waste my energy. I kept finding ways to advance and came out on the tail end of the main pack.

Coming into transition I could see that I was connected and going to make the group. In the cold, however, I couldn’t get my helmet on and was then put in a position where I was about 10-15 seconds behind.

I rode very hard for the next 5 km, riding past athletes who were getting dropped by the main group. I would go past guys who seemed unable to react because of the cold. I knew that keeping it close initially would pay off.
Luckily Jason Wilson and Mario Mola caught me and together we took turns up front until we brought the group back. At that point the wind and rain really started to affect me. Because I wasn’t riding hard anymore I was really getting cold and having a hard time operating the brakes and gears on my Cervelo.

Coming into T2 it was the usual mad dash. I took a few risks following Vincent Luis to the front and got off in the top five. Again I had a really hard time putting my shoes on with hands and feet that weren’t working. I started the run way, way back and had a lot of bodies to pass.

On the run I just told myself I was out running another CIS cross country race for McMaster and to not let the conditions dictate my performance. I kept pressing and I was rewarded as I kept going from group to group. With a lap to go I just gave it everything I had and was rewarded with that 8th place finish.

It was so rewarding because I’ve been working hard and executing so well in training that I knew the performance was there. It’s just so great that I was able to show it that day. I’m really excited for Chicago and I’m looking forward to executing a great race again!