Jewish Chronicle Sports News December 14th, 2007

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Eilat hosts survival of the fittest

Twenty-three athletes from London, Manchester, Leeds and Israel took part in the Israeli Triathlon Championships in Eilat on Friday 30th November. Competing at either the Olympic distance (1.5km swim, 40km cycle, 10km run), the 'Sprint' (each of the Olympic distances halved), or as part of an Olympic distance relay team, the participants ranged in age from 17-year-old Sasha Lerner to veteran Ivan Green, 67.

The fastest amongst the competitors over the Olympic distance were Abraham Rosenfield in 2:52, Samuel Fromson in 2:53, Amiel Elkus in 3:00 and Robert Goldschmidt in 3:03, all impressive performances in a test of endurance and versatility.

Caroline Gershon, Lydia Corin and Gabriella Lauffer, aged 21, combined forces to complete the relay event in under three hours, and reported, "It really was a special event. The group atmosphere really encouraged our team."

Neil Isaacson, 44, told JC Sport: "It was a huge and very well organised competition. We started in waves and there were 350 in my group alone. Our swim was a well-marked two-lap course in the sea. But the cycling stage was particularly challenging. It was a straight 20 km out and 20 km back, and the outward section was both uphill and against a fierce headwind. It took me 65 minutes out and 30 minutes back. The weather was somewhat overcast, which made the run easier, and I was well satisfied with my 3:28 finishing time."

The group raised more than £60,000 for Kisharon by their efforts. Kisharon is a North West London organisation which trains people of all ages with severe learning disabilities.

The following morning, the world's elite triathletes were competing over the same course in the final leg of the International Triathlon Union World Cup series. Hirokatsu Tayama made history by becoming the first Japanese triathlete to ever win a World Cup race. 


Kisharon’s all-conquering triathletes

Back row left to right:   Ami Elkus, Simon  Bentley, Robert Goldschmidt, Elliot Nussbaum, Daniella Lerner
Front row:   Neil Isaacson, Lydia  Corin, Caroline Gershon, Tania Bentley, Gabriella Lauffer, Sasha  Lerner