Racing over the Olympic distance, the pair will be on time trial bikes for the non-draft event, with a number of middle distance specialists also lining up and looking to take some scalps.
Both Wilde and Hauser shared their excitement to race in Queensland, with a strong international start list on the Sunshine Coast bound to make the race an exciting one to follow.
“I’m looking forward to just doing my own thing on the bike”
Despite acknowledging that the field boasts an incredibly strong group of swimmers, Wilde believes that the race will be won or lost on the bike and is excited to be able to put his head down on the time trial bike.
“I’m feeling really good, it’s nice to be back on the Oceanian side of the world with the nice warm weather. I think the jet lag has passed over the last few days, so I’m feeling really good and ready to go, and just super excited to get on the TT bike to be honest.
“It’s going to be a tough, I think 90% of the guys that are racing the short course are all swimmers, you’ve got Henri [Schoeman], Matt [Hauser], Jamie [Riddle], and all those guys, so the swim is going to be quite crucial for me to at least be as close as possible to those guys.
“But I think you can win or lose this race hugely on the bike, it’s 40k, it’s non drafting, it’s down my alleyway so it’s going to be the first opportunity that I get to race these guys and not tow them up the road this time, so looking forward to just doing my own thing on the bike and trying to get away and then hopefully setting up for a really nice run at the end.”
Racing the 40th anniversary of the event, Wilde is excited for the spectacle of Noosa and is excited to race the special competition for the very first time.
“You hear so many people talk about Noosa and what sort of spectacle it is, it’s a small coastal town and there’s over 13,000 people racing over the next five days, so I think the atmosphere and the heritage of the race – it’s the 40th year so just looking forward to getting onto the start line for the very first time and just giving it some.”
“I’ll hopefully be looking to defend the home court advantage”
For Matt Hauser, the Noosa Triathlon Festival is something that he has participated in during previous editions, but has never raced the professional race.
“I’m feeling really excited most of all. It’s actually my first time competing in the main event, having previously taken part in the Ocean Swim, Noosa Bolt and Legends Triathlon. I’ve spent a few weeks on the time trial bike for the first time and I feel pretty dialled in, which I’m excited about and just exploring the unknown.
“I’ve always loved being a part of the weekend for the past nine years, and in giving the respect this iconic race deserves, I felt I needed to be 100% fit and ready to tackle this course not only just to take part but to try and win.”
Despite being ready for the off season, the prestige of the event and the international stars on the start line tempted Hauser to extend his season by one additional race, before taking a much needed break heading into the Olympic year.
“Overall the body feels ready for a break to be honest but this race has been motivating me for quite some time now, especially with the level of competition heading up to the Sunny Coast this year.
“It’s awesome to have international talent coming to race and experience this iconic course which us Aussies know and love so well. I’ll hopefully be looking to defend the home court advantage and have one last big push for the year.”