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Trail mix will be tough test for Tom
Updated 9:38am Thursday 10th July 2014 in Sport
TOM Linton-Neal is a fitness instructor at the Workouts gyms in Keighley and Shipley.
However, the 19-year-old from Gilstead is looking forward to a workout of a different kind in October.
The former Craven College student is tackling the Xterra World Triathlon Championships in Hawaii.
Linton-Neal, who qualified for the global competition in Maui at a European event in Spain in May, knows that the undulating nature of the American course will be his biggest test.
After a 1.5km ocean swim, there will be a 30km mountain bike course over single tracks and a 10km run over trails.
The teenager, who suffers from type one diabetes and is helped by the Airedale Diabetes Clinic, admitted: "Two hours on the road could take you twice as long on the trails as they are so up and down.
"I am a bit nervous about the prospect of competing in Hawaii but I am looking forward to it as well and am getting in some serious training.
"I come from a cycling background, so that is the aspect of triathlon that I enjoy the most, but I am also doing plenty of swimming, although not so much road work."
Linton-Neal, whose place as an elite junior at the International Triathlon Union Cross World Championship in Zittau, Germany in August was confirmed by the British Triathlon Federation at the weekend, explained his preparatory schedule.
He said: "On a busy week of training, I can be putting in 150 miles on the bike and 15 to 20 kilometres of swimming, but you have to have some slack weeks, where I might do 100 miles on the bike and ten kilometres of swimming, before stepping it up again."
The terrain apart, Linton-Neal's biggest obstacle in Hawaii could well be financial, bearing in mind it costs almost £2,700 to enter.
He explained: "There is the cost of getting over there and accommodation but I am saving what I can, and my mum Debbie has been baking so she can hold cake stalls.
"The first one raised £18 but I am also looking for sponsorship."
Anyone who can help Tom, who only made his triathlon debut at Ilkley in 2011 and competed over the Olympic course in London last autumn, can contact him on 07917-103703 or via e-mail at email@example.com.
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