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Hauschildt aims for triathlon win in WA

AAP logoAAP 2/12/2016 Roger Vaughan

Two months after another injury ruined her Hawaiian Ironman debut, Australian triathlete Melissa Hauschildt will have stiff opposition at Ironman WA.

Hauschildt is one of Australia's top long-distance competitors and there was plenty of expectation about how she would perform at the Hawaiian world championships.

She was in contention for a top-10 finish, but pulled out early in the marathon run because of a quad muscle injury.

Hauschildt has racked up an impressive resume since switching from track and field to long-course triathlon, including two Ironman 70.3, or half-Ironman, world titles.

She won last year's final Ironman Melbourne race and in July took out Ironman Frankfurt.

But Hauschildt also has had a bad run with injuries and she had to put her Kona debut on hold for two years.

Her main rival on Sunday at Busselton, south of Perth, will be Sarah Piampiano.

The American is the defending Ironman WA champion and is coming off her second-straight seventh placing at Hawaii.

The women's field is particularly strong and, in a rarity for Ironman triathlon, provides the top seeds.

Swede Asa Lundstrom finished one place behind Piampiano in Hawaii and German Mareen Hufe has finished runner-up at Busselton for the past three years.

The men's race will feature Denis Chevrot from France, who won in 2014 and was runner-up in 2015.

American Andy Potts and Canadian Jeff Symonds are also in the pro men's field.

Ironman WA features a flat and super-fast coastal course, although strong winds can be a factor.

The race is a 3.8km ocean swim, then a 180km cycle and 42.2km marathon run.

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