London 2012

GB triathlon girls target gold

If I get it right I can win says Jenkins

Last Updated: 02/08/12 5:50pm

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Great Britain's women's triathlon team have promised to "go hard" as they bid for first Olympic medal in the sport on Saturday morning.

Most of the attention in the build-up to the Games has focused on the all-conquering Brownlee brothers, who go into Tuesday's men's race as favourites for gold and silver.

But, with reigning world champion Helen Jenkins spearheading Britain's highly-rated women, it could well become a golden double for the host nation.

The 27-year-old from Wales, who won her last World Triathlon Series race in style in San Diego in May, has been among the most consistent of the top women over the past few seasons, with numerous podium finishes.

And she established herself as arguably the favourite for gold when she dominated the test event over the Olympic course in Hyde Park last year.

Confidence

"It gives me great confidence to know I've won on this course," she said. "And obviously winning earlier this year in San Diego as well.

"Over the past few years I've had a lot of seconds and thirds but to step on top of the podium has really given me the confidence to know that if I get it right on the day then I can win.

"I've got so much support, it's really carried me forward over these past few weeks, and I just want to go out there and do my best and hope that's enough for a medal, just to thank all the people who've supported me along the way."

Jenkins will be joined on the pontoon by Vicky Holland from Gloucester and Leicestershire's Lucy Hall, following the latter's controversial selection.

Hall, 20, is a relative novice at elite senior level but British Triathlon opted to go down the route of selecting a team to help Jenkins go for gold.

Impressive

Hall's status as one of the fastest swimmers in the sport earned her a place in the team, and it is no secret that Britain will try to split the pack and drop some of Jenkins' big rivals going into the bike leg.

Holland said: "One of the beautiful things about triathlon is you can never be sure who's going to do what on any given day.

"You have to be prepared for anybody and everybody to come out of the woodwork and have a really impressive performance.

"It's always been said that the winners in the triathlon at the Olympics have never been the favourites. Many of the girls are looking in great shape, as you would expect, this is the pinnacle of the sport.

"We've got our own plan of what we want to do. It would be remiss to go into that in too much detail but let's just say we want to go hard."

Jenkins believes the team approach, which Canada used successfully in Beijing to win Simon Whitfield a medal in the men's race, gives Britain the best chance of breaking their Olympic duck.

Committed

"The aim for British Triathlon is to win a medal," she said. "And I think the three of us working together are more likely to do that. We've got three of us committed to that."

The hype around triathlon and its status as one of the few free events means there is guaranteed to be a huge crowd roaring Jenkins and her team-mates on.

The world champion knows the country is expecting her to deliver, and she cannot wait to show what she can do.

Jenkins added: "There is probably a bit more pressure because it's a home Olympics and we're a very strong team, but we're professional athletes and we have to learn to deal with that pressure.

"I also enjoy it, it means there's potential for us getting medals. I'm just trying to enjoy the whole experience and really look forward to racing."

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