Concept

Kate Allen (triathlete)

Summary
Katherine Jessie Jean "Kate" Allen (born 25 April 1970, in Geelong, Australia) is an Australian-Austrian triathlete. She won the gold medal in the women's triathlon at the 2004 Summer Olympics in Athens. Kate Allen grew up on a sheep-farming property with her three brothers at Teesdale in southeastern Australia. From an early age her parents encouraged her to run, and she used to frequently jog to primary school some 3 kilometres from home. At the age of four Allen began participating in Little Athletics at Landy Field in Geelong. She competed in junior athletics until the age of 14, winning a number of championships over 1500 m and 'cross-country' distance. Allen also enjoyed gymnastics in her early years, a sport that would prove important to her coordination skills during her triathlon career. Allen graduated from Ballarat University as a nurse at age 20. She then travelled overseas. During one of her trips she met Marcel Diechtler in Kitzbühel, whom she married in 1999, who was a triathlon competitor for Austria. Diechtler encouraged Allen to take up triathlon, beginning in 1996. After some years of successful racing around Europe with her former coach Mario Huys Allen received Austrian citizenship in 2002 and started racing in the World Cup. She took silver in only her third World Cup in Hamburg, Germany and won silver at the European Championships in Valencia, Spain. Just eight years after beginning the sport, Allen won the 2004 Olympic triathlon in Athens. At the end of the swim leg Allen was in 44th place in the field of 51. After the bicycle leg she was in 28th. During the run she progressively overtook twenty seven competitors to power past then-leader Australian Loretta Harrop just 150 metres from the finish line, winning the race in emphatic style. Alongside her Olympic distance triathlon career, Allen showed several strong performances in racing at the Ironman distance. In 2002, she recorded the fastest Ironman debut time ever, completing the course in 8:58:24.
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