Brothers battle for top spot

February 22, 2017

Benalla brothers Ryan and Lachlan Waddell took out the top spots in a national pentathlon competition recently.

Benalla brothers Lachlan and Ryan Waddell took sibling rivalry to another level recently when they battled for gold and silver medals in a Melbourne pentathlon.

Lachlan, 19, pipped older brother Ryan, 22, in the final event, and admits there ‘‘has been a bit of banter’’ between the two around the dinner table since the win.

‘‘There’s definitely a bit of banter between us, but to be fair (Ryan) had the excuse of being a bit sick around the competition time,’’ Lachlan said.

The Modern Pentathlon Australian Nationals was held in Melbourne on February 11 and 12 and tested competitors in showjumping, swimming, fencing, shooting and running.

The showjumping event was held in Eltham on Saturday. Both Ryan and Lachlan knocked one rail down during their ride, meaning they were level going into Sunday’s four events, held in Richmond.

‘‘The next day, first up was swimming, and I just pipped (Ryan) in that,’’ Lachlan said.

‘‘Then we had fencing, where we kind of played everyone in the draw. I finished with 18 victories and Ryan had 15. So I was slightly ahead.’’

The shooting and running events were held in combination. Competitors had to shoot five targets, then run 800m, and repeat four times.

This meant a total running distance of 3.2km and 20 targets before crossing the finish line.

‘‘It was done with people being seeded, and because I was in the lead I started a little bit earlier than Ryan, about a minute. Ryan caught up about 10 seconds in the runs, but in the end I beat him,’’ Lachlan said laughing.

Father Ron Waddell said both boys recorded personal bests in all five events, a rarity in multi-event competitions.

Outside of competing in pentathlons, Ryan studies medicine at Monash University, while Lachlan is a first-year engineering student at Deakin University.

Lachlan wants to continue competing in pentathlons but also wishes to keep up his studies in Melbourne.

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