Cressy shines on endurance debut

By Gary Caffell


Multisport

Naomi Cressy surprised even herself when she finished third in the women's open two-day event in New Zealand's highest profile endurance event, the Coast to Coast.

Cressy, 23, who was home schooled in Masterton before attending Ucol here, is now nursing in Christchurch but she first became interested in endurance sport after getting involved in mountain running in the Tararuas and becoming a member of the Wairarapa Multisport Club and the Masterton Cycling Club.

The possibility of entering the 2013 Coast to Coast first entered Cressy's mind early last year and despite suffering a knee injury, which required surgery in April, just two months later she started serious training for an event which involves running, cycling and kayaking.

Making it to the start line, Cressy was "fairly hopeful" of a top 10 placing but her focus was more on finishing than anything else.

"It was my first time and I didn't know quite what to expect so I wasn't setting any big targets."

Cressy sat in fourth place in her category after a first day which saw her run 3km, cycle 55km and mountain run 33km.

"It went well but I have to say I was feeling a bit washed up at the end of it. I was pretty exhausted," she said.

Second day action consisted of a 15km cycle, 67km kayak and 70km cycle and while Cressy was a little disappointed with her effort on what she saw as her strongest discipline, the kayak, she did pick up one place there and held third all the way to the finish.

Cressy's overall time was 14h 35min 32s and ahead of her were Jess Simson (12:48.10) and Shaniel Cornille (14:35.22). She was over 12 minutes ahead of fourth placegetter Nikita Watkins (14:48.7).

The 2014 Coast to Coast now beckons Cressy, who is sure there is room for improvement next time around.

- WAIRARAPA TIMES-AGE

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