THERE are quick learners and then there’s Justin Godfrey.
Just 14 weeks ago the Albury father hadn’t competed in a triathlon.
This month he finished first in the T5 category of the Australian Paratriathlon Championships in Penrith, Sydney.
Now the Rio Paralympic Games is on his agenda.
“I was pretty pleased (to win),” Godfrey said.
“Albury triathlon coach Fabrizio Andreoni told me about the championships about 14 weeks ago.
“He thought I should have a think about it and give it a go.”
Godfrey is happy he did.
Not only did he take out the race, in the process he qualified for the World Championships in London, England, in September.
The former wheelchair basketballer and mountain bike rider is aiming to compete at the event and test himself against the best in the world.
If he does well a spot in the Australian team for Rio in 2016 is a possibility.
First though, he wants to improve on all three legs, especially swimming.
If the Australian Championships proved anything to Godfrey, it’s how hard the triathlon caper can be.
And on one leg it’s even harder.
“You’re not allowed to swim with any prosthetic on,” Godfrey said.
“When you get out of the water there’s a pre-transition area where you can put a leg on to get to the transition area.”
During the run Godfrey uses a light and springy prosthetic “carbon foot” which he changes for the cycle leg.
Godfrey competed in the Corowa Triathlon at the weekend and will compete in the Geelong Triathlon next month.
The self-funded triathlete is sponsored by Pushys Bike Warehouse but will seek more sponsorship to help him compete in London.
With 2016 the first year of paratriathlons being included in the Paralympics, the qualification process is still uncertain but funding for triathletes appears minimal at best.