NEWS
09/20/2011 09:06 EDT | Updated 11/20/2011 05:12 EST

Paula Findlay says she won't race triathlon at Pam American Games

EDMONTON - Canadian triathlete Paula Findlay has ended her season early and will not race in the upcoming Pan American Games.

Findlay posted in her blog Tuesday that her mind and body need a break after a difficult second half of the season.

She is considered one of Canada's Olympic medal hopefuls next year at the 2012 Olympics in London.

Findlay won five world championship series races over the last two years, including a victory in London last year. The world championship series determines the year's world champions.

But a hip injury midway through this summer was a setback for the 22 year old from Edmonton because she couldn't train for races properly after that.

She was 29th on the London course last month and did not finish the world championship series finale Sept. 11 in Beijing.

Findlay dropped out in Beijing during 40-kilometre bike leg of the triathlon that also includes a 1.5-kilometre swim and 10-km run.

She decided not to race last Sunday's world championship series race in Yokahama, Japan, which was a rescheduled event because of the earthquake in that country earlier this year.

"I changed my flight from Yokohama to Edmonton, and came home to decide if I had the energy or desire to train for five more weeks for the Pan Am games," Findlay wrote in her blog www.paulafindlay.blogspot.com.

"This situation looked very familiar to my panic catch-up after London, which clearly did not work out well for me.

"I decided that it was not worth the risk of failing again, I couldn't mentally deal with another bad race, and my body was telling me that it needed a break."

After three straight wins to open her 2011 season, Findlay withdrew from a hometown ITU World Cup in July because of the hip problem.

The Pan American Games in Guadalajara, Mexico, in October was on her race schedule this season.

She compared this season to a water slide in that it "started off high and ended low."

"I did have some great races this season and next year is much more important, but I'm still really sad about such a disappointing finish to my season," Findlay wrote. "At one point I had a realistic chance of finishing on the podium at the world championships, and I slowly slid down the rankings after every race.

"Despite the disappointments, I've learned so much in these past few months and I think that it has left me even better prepared for 2012."