The safety of triathlon has been called into question, following the death of a competitor.

The man died during a weekend race on the Sunshine Coast.

Lauren Penny reports.


Peter Farlecas was competing in the Mooloolaba Triathlon when he suffered a heart attack during the swim leg.

The 39-year-old was a strong swimmer and had been training for a number of months.

His death has prompted concern about the safety of Ironman triathlons.

Competitors are required to sign a waiver before the event, but no other health checks are in place.

Toby Somerville, Triathlon Coach: “As far as the waiver is concerned I don’t think it really needs to be changed in any way. It’s quite straightforward.”

Many triathletes train from eight to 12 hours a week, with some even training up to 22 hours.

Toby Somerville, Triathlon Coach: “There’s a fair amount of planning involved so most people, the majority of people are well prepared when they come to the event.”

Mr Somerville says triathlons don’t pose any higher risk than most sports, but recommends being a member of an affiliated club.

Toby Somerville, Triathlon Coach: “Whether you have a coach or not is not that important but if you’re a member of a club then you’re getting good advice from the club coach and making sure that your training is appropriate to the race you are going to do.”

The incident echoes the death of a 27-year-old man who suffered a heart attack at the finish line of Sydney’s 14 kilometre City2Surf run last month.

Lauren Penny, QUT News.