Paratriathlon world champion Lauren Parker has taken on a new challenge, winning her first UCI Para-Cycling World Cup race in Belgium on the weekend.
The Australian wonder won the 21-kilometre individual time trial on Saturday by a margin of 43 minutes. The next day saw her come in second in a sprint over the 56-kilometre road race.
Parker is setting up to qualify for the Paris Paralympics not just for paratriathlon, but also for para-cycling. She said, “It was a long time coming so it was good to get out there on the international para-cycling stage.”
Just a few hundred miles away on the island of Ibiza, her Bahrain Victorious 13 teammates Jan Frodeno, Alistair Brownlee, Daniela Ryf and Holly Lawrence blew the cobwebs out at the PTO European Open. With Frodeno and Brownlee returning from injury, their strong finishes in 4th and 6th mark solid pain-free comebacks. Lawrence rounded out the top 10 in the women’s race, while Ryf struggled with stomach issues and dropped out to fight another day.
Joe Skipper and Kat Matthews competed in the World Triathlon Long Distance Championships the day after. Skipper finished 22nd; Matthews, still recovering from her exertions at Ironman Texas, ended her race early.
Parker now heads to Japan to join Georgia Taylor-Brown, Hayden Wilde and Henri Schoeman in Yokohama, jumpstarting their Paris 2024 campaigns at the World Paratriathlon Series and World Triathlon Championship Series respectively.