An athlete who has her sights on winning a medal at next month’s Commonwealth Games has been fine-tuning her training at Marsh Tracks, Rhyl.

On March 22 Lizzie Tench, from Farndon, will head for Australia’s Gold Coast as part of England’s 10-strong team of triathletes and para-triathletes.

The 43-year-old will be creating a piece of history as it is the first time for the para-triathlon to be included in the Games. It involves a 750-metre open water swim, a 20k hand-cycle stage and a 5k wheelchair race.

To help her achieve her goal she travelled to Rhyl to use the purpose-built cycling circuit Marsh Tracks and it has proved ideal for the purpose. Previously, much of her training was done on tracks in Liverpool and Shrewsbury or on public cycle tracks.

“I was aware of Marsh Tracks but didn’t realise what a brilliant facility it was,” she said.

“The surface is great and there is plenty of width.”

Lizzie, a former social worker who grew up in Stramshall, near Uttoxeter, has been paralysed from the waist down since suffering a spinal injury in 2012, when she was involved in a hit-and-run accident while out cycling. She was treated at the Robert Jones and Agnes Hunt in Gobowen.

She had previously enjoyed swimming, cycling and running but had never competed in a triathlon, and after attending a talent ID day in March, 2014, was selected for the Great Britain Paratriathlon squad.

She has since won numerous British titles and medals in European and world championships.

She was disappointed that her class of PT1 was not included in the programme at the Rio Paralympics in 2016 but was able to attend as a member of the Paralympic Inspiration Programme set up to give potential team members an insight into the Games.

Her place in the Commonwealth Games squad was sealed when she won the British championship last August.

At the Games her main rivals will include Australian Emily Tapp and her own English teammate Jade Jones-Hall.

“I have never beaten Jade but I am hoping to get on the podium even if I don’t get gold or silver.” She said.

At Marsh Tracks she came under the Watchful eye of Christine White, of the Buckley-based Cadence Tri Club, a senior triathlon coach.

She, too, was delighted with the Marsh Tracks facility and what it offered riders of all abilities.

“It’s an amazing place and North Wales is lucky to have such a circuit,” she said.