Lauren Parker defends Paratriathlon Oceania Championship in Newcastle

Lauren Parker felt stronger than ever as she powered to a home-town victory in the Paratriathlon Oceania Championships in Newcastle on Sunday.

The 31-year-old Novocastrian described it as the perfect start to 2020, a year she plans to include another world title and Paralympic gold.

"It was so good out there; the conditions were absolutely perfect and I had a great race," Parker told the Newcastle Herald. "The swim was like glass and there was no wind on the bike and run. It was hot and humid, which I like."

Parker, who has her sights set on another world title in May then Paralympic gold in August, led the PTWC women's race from start to finish to defend her Oceania title after winning the event last year.

She was the first competitor out of the water from the swim leg then increased her lead on the bike before holding on in the run to secure victory in a time of one hour, 13 minutes and 43 seconds.

Compatriots Emily Tapp (1:17.24) and Sara Tait (1:43.01) finished second and third respectively. Tait had mechanical issues on the bike.

Lauren Parker on her way to victory in the Paratriathlon Oceania Championships in Newcastle on Sunday. Picture: Con Chronis, Triathlon Australia.

Lauren Parker on her way to victory in the Paratriathlon Oceania Championships in Newcastle on Sunday. Picture: Con Chronis, Triathlon Australia.

"I've got a lot of confidence out of today," Parker said. "To know where I am compared to the other competitors and knowing that my training is on track is really good.

"I had so many supporters out on course and to do it in front of them, my team, friends and family, just to make them proud makes me feel good, and to win for the second year in a row in my home town feels amazing.

"I couldn't have had a better start to the year. Hopefully things continue to go well and I continue winning."

Parker's next hit-out will be in Devonport, Tasmania for a World Paratriathlon Series race on February 29. where she is also the defending champion.

"For Devonport to be a [World Paratriathlon Series race] is just so good for Australia. We get all the international racers coming over and it will be great competition there," Parker said.

This story Parker defends title on home turf first appeared on Newcastle Herald.