EVESHAM multi-sport athlete Helen Russell has taken an early lead in the 2019 British Quadrathlon Trophy Race Series after winning the Dearne Valley Quadrathlon in South Yorkshire.
Since winning the World Championship title in her age group in Brigg, Lincolnshire, three weeks ago, Russell entered the race as one of the favourites but victory was not a given.
The race, set in Manvers Waterfront near Rotherham, covered an 800m lake swim, 15km off-road bike, 4km kayak and 5km run.
Russell, sponsored by the Rivers Evesham Gifted & Talented Scheme and Worcester-based sports clothing company Scimitar, led out of the swim and managed to build her lead throughout the race, finishing in 1.47.05.
Second place went to Gillian Melia from Quadrac Racing, Bedford, in 2.05.22 and Helen Adams from Hambleton Triathlon Club, North Yorkshire, took the final podium place in 2.06.58.
The win means Russell is in the lead for the overall series title, which rewards consistency over the season. With five races in the series though, there is still a long way to go and the Vale star will hope to extend her lead at the British Championship race in Box End at the end of the month.
Russell said: “I am really pleased to take the lead in the British Series. I injured my forearm at the World Championships, so it was a race against time to heal it before this race.
“I was relieved to be able to race and, although the time was slower on this course than last year, my aim was to win and earn valuable points in the series.”