BEIJING, China (August 9, 2008) -- It was a short but sweet visit to Beijing for the U.S. Olympic Triathlon Team on Friday, August 8.
The team arrived on Thursday, took part in a Friday morning workout at Beijing Normal University before marching in the Opening Ceremonies in the evening. By Saturday morning, the athletes were on their way to Cheju, Korea for a week of training before they return to Beijing on August 15 for their competitions.
The women race on Monday, August 18, races are scheduled for 10 a.m. local time.
During their Friday morning workout, the athletes were able to get their blood flowing and work out the kinks after a long flight from the U.S. the night before, and took a few moments to talk with media watching the practice.
Following are excerpts from interviews with the athletes on Friday:
*Note: Sarah Haskins (St. Louis, Mo. / Colorado Springs, Colo.) is meeting the team in Korea.
Laura Bennett (N. Palm Beach, Fla. / Boulder, Colo.)
On the Olympic Process and Experience:
It's been quite a whirlwind lately. It's finally here. It's pretty exciting, seeing all the athletes, and just the hype around it. The Village is beautiful. It's been fun so far. We've been pretty tired, so you try to take it all in. It's been great.
On What's Next with Training:
Basically resting from here. In Cheju, just find a little bit of a routine for a few sessions. The objective of finding a bit of a rhythm and getting any cobwebs out from travel.
I'm right on track with my training and am really looking forward to racing.
On What She's Doing after the Race:
Afterwards the family is coming over and we'll be doing a little bit of the tourist stuff.
Julie Ertel (Irvine, Calif. / Placentia, Calif.)
On Her Training Goals:
The week away will be the official taper week, but really just getting some quality sessions, focus on longer sessions where my lungs will be taxed a little more.
On the Olympic Experience:
The processing was very frantic. Today it's sinking in a bit more. I can't wait to walk around the Village.
On Her Water Polo Experience (2000 Olympic silver medalist):
The water polo team has two games after I'm done competing. It's very comforting to see them here. We walked into the pool together from the lockerroom this morning. I almost headed over to the water polo goals before I remembered I needed the lane lines.
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