US medals give Matthews incentive to work even harder
WHEN most people think of Noosa, they think of relaxing. Not so Murwillumbah triathlete Paul Matthews, who has just returned from a successful season of competition in the %United States.
Mathews picked up two second placings in two races in the international ironman 70.3 series in Lubbock, Texas and Seattle, Washington.
The races, held over a course comprising a 1.9km swim, a 90km bike leg and a 21km run, saw Matthews up against a world-class field, and his results in the Open division there have him confident of a strong performance in the Noosa Triathlon next month.
Ironically, the Noosa race will pit Matthews against the man he was training with in the US, Craig Walton.
"Since I have been training with Craig, it's fair to say I know his weaknesses. But having said that, it hasn't helped me to beat him yet," Matthews laughed.
"I'm not that far behind him. I just need to stay with him on the bike leg, because I know I can go a little bit faster on the run."
Matthews' experience overseas has seen him post his best times to date in the US events.
In the Texas race, Matthews came in just under three minutes behind winner American Chris Legh and held off two-time Hawaiian Ironman winner Tim Deboon.
The Seattle race was a real challenge for Matthews, especially after he fell from his bike, but he still managed to come back in the run leg to claim second.
Now back on the Tweed and enjoying his spring training, Matthews will be out to improve on his 10th placing last year at Noosa.
Matthews intends to return to the US next year to compete on the lucrative pro circuit.