Hayley Bateup has declared she is in “100 per cent” better shape than her failed 2011-12 Ironwoman Series Campaign and revealed she plans to race professionally for the next three years.
The 32 year old triple Coolangatta Gold winner linked with Mermaid Beach from Kurrawa in the off-season and had another bout of surgery to help mend a chronic shoulder problem.
Bateup bombed out in last seasons series, finishing 15th overall and placing last in the Portsea round.
But she said her shoulder was feeling the best it had in three years and she was ready to blitz this weekend’s selection trials where five iron women would be picked for the 2012-13 series.
“Everything is going well. The ski, board and running. I’m feeling really good actually.” she said.
“It’s nice to feel confident. I havent felt this confident in a couple of years. Im 100 per cent better this year. I wasnt even capable of trialling last year because I wasn’t fit. I’m excited about this season and feeling how i used to before my shoulder broke down”.
Bateup is the hot favourite to take out the Tugun trial which includes a field of mostly youngsters.
It could be the first time Bateup has been competitive in the series since 2009-10 after she missed the 2010-11 series with the shoulder problem.
Bateup said she was hoping to find her peak form again and that would see her compete for another few years.
“If all goes to plan and the shoulder stays like this, I can see myself racing out the rest of my three-year contract at Mermaid,” she said. “It’s never going to be a perfect shoulder. I’m always going to have days where it get’s inflamed. I’ll hit a few speed bumps but compared to last year, where I had to keep getting cortisone inject