Marlpool paratriathlete Phil Hogg has said he is ‘over the moon’ after clinching a silver medal at the ITU World Triathlon Grand Final in Edmonton, Canada.
The 44-year-old, a former Great Britain wheelchair basketball player, only started competing in the world of paratriathlons last year.
He won the European and British championships during 2013 before finishing fourth at the World Grand Final, held in London.
This year, he has retained his British title and now finished on the podium at the world event, something he sees as a major boost as he continues his bid to land a place at the 2016 Paralympics in Rio.
Phil explained: “I was over the moon with second. I set targets before I went out there, and that was to get on the podium, but I knew that it was going to be a tough ask due to the quality of opposition.
“So I was so pleased to get second, really delighted with that after the illness-affected winter I had had, and all the catching up since then.
“I had a great swim and came out of the water in first place and it was a couple of laps on the bike before I got caught and then I was fourth, so I had to keep calm, make sure I carried out the plan I had for the whole race and I gradually pulled it back, so I was delighted with how things went.
“I’ve been making use of all the aspects of preparations at Loughborough that are on offer, such as the physio, pyschologist, nutritionists etc and I particularly feel the psychologist has been really useful, because the training in itself is the easy part, it’s what is going on up top that can win or lose you a race.
“You are put under pressure in so many ways, by the other competitors, by the nature of the course, by the need to pick up ranking points that can help you get to the Paralympics next year, so if you can find ways to successfully deal with all that, it can only be a good thing, and from the British Championships in Liverpool onwards, I feel I’ve done that.
“It was pretty much perfect conditons. We started about 4.15pm and the temperature was 18-20 degrees, with a bit of wind. It was a tough bike race, including a category five climb, which I think is the most you can have in a paratriathlon race. It was something like a 50m climb in the space of 200m so that was hard but the swim was in open water in a park, and they had spent something like ten million dollars on chlorinating the lake, so that was a pleasant surprise.”
Phil is next in action in the World Series race in Madrid on September 21.