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The start of something extraordinary

Balvert tested against world class field in China

The blistering pace of a world class field hasn’t deterred Troy Balvert after his first of two races in China for the FINA 10km Marathon Swimming World Cup.

The 22-year old finished 27th in the 48 strong field with a time of 1.58.36 at Qiandao Lake, near Hangzhou on Sunday.

Brazil’s Allan Do Carmo, the South American champion, won the race in 1.52.59 closely followed by Olympic silver medallist Thomas Lurz, Germany (1.53.00) and Diogo Villarinho, Brazil (1.53.01).

In calm conditions Balvert drew No 1 and got off to a strong start, sitting in third of a congested top 30 after the first lap.

Maintaining his spot at the front, Balvert eventually succumbed to the fast pace, losing the pack and swimming on his own for the last 2km.

“It wasn’t my best race.  The first 5km went well and then I just ran out of steam,” said Balvert.

“I was sitting at the front and tried some different tactics but it didn’t pay off”.

He says the idea was to get out the front of the pack and avoid the fray of legs and arms, but is all the more better for the experience.

“I will probably try the same tactics again and just hope I can move up the pack a bit.”

After a disruptive week of training and below standard pool conditions, Balvert is looking forward to Hong Kong and ending the tour on a high.

“After a bit of rest and relaxation, I can refocus and train hard before the final race.”

Balvert will next race on October 18 at Repulse Bay, Hong Kong where he will be joined by fellow Kiwi open water swimmer Charlotte Webby.