New challenges for triathlon lad Andy but star is ready to face them head on

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Forfar’s triathlon star Andrew Woodroffe is hungry ahead of a new year of competitive action.

Woodroffe will be making a step into the unknown to face some new challenges with some big goals to go alongside those obstacles.

He’ll be moving up to the Half Ironman distance in his races, which is around double the distance of what he usually faces in the Olympic distance races and is composed of a 1.9km swim, a 90km bike ride and a 21km half marathon run.

Andrew is looking forward to the challenge as he feels the make-up of the longer race lends itself to his strengths.

He said: “For me the main aim this year is to start testing my legs over the greater distance.

“The reason for stepping up to this is with my weaker swim and stronger bike, I feel I have more chance of breaking into the top ranks when I can afford to lose the time in the swim.

“I also want a fresh challenge and a chance to test myself.

“Last season I raced a couple of events at this distance and they both went really well so although it’s a bit unknown, I feel confident.”

Woodroffe is preparing for a return to action in April in Spain and has set his sights on finishing top of his age group in the Half Ironman events he will undertake.

He also wants to finish in the higher places at the Scottish Championships.

He continued: “For me the season will begin again in April in Spain. I’ll race Portocolom triathlon to test the legs before my first half ironman Challenge Furetaventura on a tough, hilly hot course but I’m really preparing for that challenge.

“In May I will be off to Lisbon for the European championships where I will be aiming for a top 10 spot.

“I will then race the Scottish Sprint, Olympic and Half Ironman Championships along with another Half Ironman in Devon.

“My aim is to win my age group in the Half Ironman events and to be within the top spots at Scottish championships.”

Andrew recently started working as an apprentice performance coach with Triathlon Scotland in Stirling, where he’s also able to make use of the incredible facilities at the University of Stirling’s Institute of Sport.

And while it’s a challenge to add 20 hours of training a week to full-time hours, Andrew is loving his time in Stirling.

He said: “I have also pre-qualified for the World Championships in September in Mexico, the decision to race or not has not yet been made but I’m working on that.

“I’m now an apprentice performance coach at Triathlon Scotland which is a fantastic job working alongside the best athletes in the country, but it has been a new challenge working full time whilst also trying to train 20 hours a week. “It’s not easy at times but I’m finding the balance.

“I have a big hunger for this year.

“I’m ready to win some big races and the hard work is happening every day.

“The race season will kick off this month with a half marathon and a duathlon to test the legs and then we will be straight into the Triathlon season.

“My winter has had its ups and downs but I’m hoping to come out the other side faster.”

As ever you can keep upto date with Andrew’s exploits right here on these very sport pages.