Emerging triathlete Jacinta Cliff is hoping to use an outstanding start to the season as a springboard for another successful summer of racing.
The 17-year-old took out the recent NSW Super Sprint in Orange, in just her first competition of the season, before she finished fourth at last week's Runaway Bay Super Sprint.
That event saw her take on Australia's top junior triathletes and Cliff said she's taken a lot of confidence out of the impressive result.
"It was quite good coming into Runaway Bay with a lot of confidence," Cliff said. "Orange was my first race of the season and I was just hoping to see where I was at.
"I'm stoked to come away with fourth at Runaway Bay. The meet was more about experience and challenging myself, so I was hoping for top 10, to be top five is great."
A graduate of the Illawarra Academy of Sport, Cliff is currently a member of the Triathlon NSW Emerging Talent Squad.
She credited the support of the Academy for helping set the foundation for her promising career.
"The IAS has been a great stepping stone, a pathway towards the NSW program. It helped to develop all my skills and allowed us to give back to the younger up and coming juniors.
"The NSW program is really great, Mick Delamotte is in charge of the squad. We had a pre-season camp which got us ready for the season.
"We also talk about things like nutrition, injury prevention, all the things behind triathlon that are important for us as juniors to develop."
With her pre-Christmas racing wrapped up, Cliff has now turned her focus to the big races in the new year. The primary target being the prestigious Devonport Triathlon.
"I'm targeting the rest of the Australian Junior Triathlon Series, there's Canberra in late January, that's the second race in the series, and then I'm targeting Devonport, the fourth race. They're the big races. Devonport is a sprint distance, which is our race distance for my age."
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