Dakhla Continental Cup


Manx triathletes Hannah Howitt and Jenny Newbery headed to Dakhla, Morocco, last weekend where they were both racing at the ITU Dakhla Continental Cup.  Conditions were warm (around mid 20s) and the swim was wavy, so perfect for IOM athletes. 

Dakhla’s start list had some strong competition, including 2 time Olympian Gillian Sanders. Hannah had a great swim, coming out the water in first (with Jenny just 1 min 20 sec behind).  After an extraordinarily long transition Hannah managed to get out in front for a windy bike leg (Dakhla is renown for kitesurfing and windsurfing due to relentless strong winds), forming a bike pack with Zoe Thomas (GB), Petra Kurikova (CZE) and Gillian Sanders (RSA) with the pack holding the break for the whole race. In the end it came down to a running race for the line.  


With some more run training behind her, Hannah managed to gain her first international elite podium, finishing in 3rd place in 1:08:23 behind Petra Kurikova (CZE) 1:07:06  and Gillian Sanders (RSA) 1:07:02.  Zoe Thomas (GB) finished fourth in 1:09:22.  Unfortunately due to a puncture Jenny wasn’t able to finish, but gained some good experience from her first full international race.


This result qualifies Hannah to represent GB in World Cup races for the 2018 season. She is also targeting the U23 World Championships, European Championships and the University World Championships.


Hannah commenting on her success said; “I was happy with the race I put together after a late season due to a foot injury. It was great to be racing for GB again and in another international field where lots of lessons were learnt. I will be training hard over the winter and am excited to see what the 2018 season holds.”