x Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 25 July 2017

Cool Reinders turns on the heat

Ina Reinders battled through tricky weather conditions to land a championship win in the women's mid-distance race in Immenstadt.

Team Abu Dhabi athlete Ina Reinders was the first to take to the bike which gave her a decisive edge in Hamburg.
Team Abu Dhabi athlete Ina Reinders was the first to take to the bike which gave her a decisive edge in Hamburg.

The German triathlete, Ina Reinders, of the Team Abu Dhabi Triathlon squad, has her sights set on a podium finish at the Ironman Germany 70.3 next month after sealing a win at the Allgäu Triathlon in her home country on Saturday. Reinders battled through tricky weather conditions to land a championship win in the women's mid-distance race in Immenstadt. With temperatures dropping to 11 degrees, and with the added obstacles of swirling wind and chilling rain, Reinders struggled to fend off the cold in her pursuit of the title.

A strong start in the two kilometre swim put her in a perfect position ahead of the 96-kilometre bike race. Fourth out of the water, Reinders made the fastest transition in her group. A speedy exit catapulted her from fourth place to the front. "It had been very warm when we left Munich the day before so we hadn't packed any cold weather clothes," she said. "All I had was my racing clothes, so I didn't have anything to put on to warm me up. The first 1,000 metres in the water were very difficult. The strong wind meant there were lots of waves: it was more like swimming in the sea.

"I managed to set off on the bike first. I didn't know how far behind the group was, so I just raced as fast as I could. It was very difficult as the conditions were bad." With a 20km run ahead of her, a sudden weather change during the second and final loop of the bike race allowed Reinders some respite. "It was difficult to get into the run as my feet felt like they were freezing in my shoes. It was difficult to stay focused," Reinders added. "The sun coming out was a big help."

The win is a significant boost to Reinders' confidence ahead of the Ironman Germany on Aug 16. Having been recently sidelined in May after surgery to rectify problems with her teeth, the Allgäu Triahtlon symbolised both her comeback and a trial of her fitness. "I am very happy to have a good race. I wasn't sure how I would perform after having time off. I couldn't do any training for two weeks, then had to start over again," said Reinders.

"I am pleased with my performance. It is the perfect preparation for the Germany Ironman." On a successful weekend for the Team Abu Dhabi Triathlon outfit, her teammates Faris Al Sultan, Sven Sundberg and Werner Leitner joined forces to scoop the men's Team Trial Triathlon title on the second day of the event. sports@thenational.ae