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Hawley makes big impression on US visit

Promising display: Hawley finished third in the collegiate women’s division

Erica Hawley, one of Bermuda’s top young triathletes, finished first junior and third in the collegiate women’s division at a triathlon in San Diego last weekend.

Hawley, who was in California visiting colleges, decided to compete in the University of California San Diego Tritonman Draft Legal Triathlon as a training race and ended up putting in a good performance.

Hawley, who studies in England where she is doing her A-levels, was first in the high school category in a time of 1hr 5min 31 sec. Her time was the third best among the collegiate women.

The only two women to beat 17-year-old Hawley were from UCLA and University of Arizona, the two schools she is interested in attending. She was also looking at the University of California San Diego and the University of California Berkeley.

Kelly Kosmo, of UCLA, was the winner of the collegiate women’s division in 1:03.39 while Erica Clevenger of University of Arizona was second in 1:05.13.

Two other competitors from the University of Arizona, Laura Haley and Andrea Nunez-Smith, completed the top five, finishing in 1:05.41 and 1:05.45, respectively.

The men’s and women’s fields were stacked with elite professionals from the United States and Canada, many of whom are going off to compete in the World Triathlon Series season opener in Abu Dhabi next weekend.

Veteran Erin Densham of Australia, the 2012 Olympic bronze medal-winner, was fourth in the women’s elite field.

The San Diego race was a USAT Under-25 Elite Development race and a collegiate conference race, which included schools from California, Arizona, Colorado and Texas.