Newspaper article The Queensland Times (Ipswich, Australia)

FROM HOSPITAL TO WORLD MEDAL FEAT; How Ipswichsportswomanachieved Herbest Making Agritty Recovery

Newspaper article The Queensland Times (Ipswich, Australia)

FROM HOSPITAL TO WORLD MEDAL FEAT; How Ipswichsportswomanachieved Herbest Making Agritty Recovery

Article excerpt

DAVID

LEMS

david.lems@qt.com.au

GIVEN Ipswich international competitor Rebecca Ungermann almost collapsed just weeks before heading overseas, her latest achievement is astounding.

Reducing her personal best overall time by an hour in such a gruelling event on the world stage proves how tenacious and determined Ungermann is.

Her exceptional effort was finishing third in the 25-29 years age group at the recent ITC Long Distance World Triathlon Championships in Penticton, Canada.

The Ipswich athlete covered the course in seven hours, 23 minutes and 46 seconds to finish one place higher than her first world long course challenge in the US the previous year.

But in crossing the line 13 minutes behind Canadian-based winner Jenna-Caer Seefried, Ungermann set some new standards for herself.

She covered the 3km swim in 51 minutes, 36 seconds before taking three hours, 43 minutes and 36 seconds on the 120km bike leg and completing the epic event with a 30km run. Her run home was two hours, 43 minutes and 56 seconds.

"It was a big surprise,'' Ungermann, 29, said of her remarkable performance.

However, hearing the excitement in Ungermann's voice underpins what she actually achieved, just to contest the world championships.

"I still had my ups and downs with the preparation,'' she said.

"I still had a few issues with health. I got sick in the lead-up.''

Prior to heading overseas, the Australian team representative battled a muscle condition that landed her in hospital overnight.

After setting off on one of her regular training rides from Booval, she suddenly stopped in anguish.

"I couldn't move,'' she recalled.

"I literally went for a bike ride into Brisbane and I didn't even get to the bottom of Mt Coot-tha.

"I gradually just got sore and more tired.

"I got to Mt Ommaney Shopping Centre and I could not move the pedals.''

Her husband Danny came to bring her back to Ipswich.

"I slept in the car all the way home,'' she said. "I had no energy.''

She was checked into hospital the following day.

Remarkably, the affable Ipswich triathlete had felt fine finishing fourth in this year's Park2Park half marathon run. …

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