ZIMBABWE teenage sensation, Mathew Denslow, is targeting a podium finish in the elite men's field at this year's Bonaqua Troutbeck ATU Sprint Triathlon African Cup which gets underway today in Nyanga.
Denslow, who underlined his massive potential after winning a gold medal in the junior men's race of the inaugural Bonaqua ATU Junior African Cup, which ran concurrently with last year's premier edition, is participating in the elite category for the first time.
The 18-year-old stepped up into the men's elite field after last year's representative, Gideon Benade, failed to register for this year's edition.
The former Hellenic Academy pupil said he is eyeing for a top five finish.
"I had a really good race last year but this year l chose to step up and compete in the elite tournament."
"I am still young, l should be competing in the Under-19 field but l want to see where l am compared with these great athletes.
"I love this place, it is one of my best fields. Having the home fans backing me is awesome as l will be racing people that are in the top 100 in the world."
"I have prepared the best way l can. l have been training in South Africa and lam looking forward to a top finish."
This year's edition has 13 competitors compared to 30 who showed up last year.
Zimbabwe will be represented by two elite athletes at the competition with Denslow battling it out in the men's field while Laurelle Brown races in the women's category.
Brown is also optimistic of a top finish.
"I'm very happy to be here after a long time of not competing in the tournament," she said.
"l will just see how it goes, l am also glad that it's a small field but l will be eyeing for a top finish."
South Africa will be represented by three athletes with one of their best triathletes, Matthew Greer, saying he is ready to roar.
"Last year wasn't good for me. I felt sick before the event and lam back for revenge this year."
"l love this place and l am geared to compete."
The tournament has also attracted participants from as far afield as Switzerland, Brazil, Russia, Syria and Mauritius.
The event will run concurrently with the junior Africa Cup, Trikidz.
Minister of Youth, Sports, Arts and Recreation, Kirsty Coventry, is scheduled to address the athletes after the events.