5 Aug 2012

Hewitt 'just not fast enough' but pleased with sixth

1:30 pm on 5 August 2012

New Zealand's Andrea Hewitt is pleased with her gutsy sixth in the Olympic triathlon but says she just wasn't fast enough in the final laps of the run.

The 30-year-old emerged from the water 27th but recorded the fastest equal time in the cycle leg with team-mate Kate McIlroy and by the time she began the run she'd improved to third.

She hung onto the leading bunch until about three kilometres from the finish, then drifted back.

She improved on her eighth at the 2008 Olympics, however, and says she was more composed this time.

"I couldn't hang onto the back. Then I settled into my own pace, I sat back and just ran my own pace and it was good enough for sixth. So I didn't blow up...I just wasn't fast enough."

Hewitt finished in 2h 00.36s.

Wouldn't change anything - coach

McIlroy, who only began competing in triathlon in 2009, says she's satisfied with her 10th placing. It was a hard, fast race, she says, and she's happy with how she performed.

The other New Zealander in the field, Nicky Samuels, finished 35th.

Coach Greg Fraine says the three Kiwis raced to a plan, and although two racers in the top 10 is a success, he's disappointed they didn't get a medal.

"I don't think we'd change anything we did," he says. "It's just one of those things that on the day there were faster athletes."

The triathlon was won by Nicola Spirig of Switzerland in a dramatic sprint finish: she beat Sweden's Lisa Norden by just a hundredth of a second.