Hard work . . . Former Gore High School pupil Adam Hillis competes in the Tauranga half-marathon earlier this year. PHOTO: PHOTOS4SALE

Adam Hillis is hungry for the top podium spot atthe upcoming World Triathlon Championships.

The former Gore High School pupil will be competing in the championships in Ibiza, Spain, in May.

This will be Hillis’ second time competing in the championships.

Last year he competed in Slovakia, placing second in the 20-24 age group.

The result was fuelling him for this year’s championship.

‘‘It makes you hungry to perform better on the international stage,’’ he said.

This year he will be competing in the 25-29 age group.

Having only taken up the sport in 2020, coming second was a dream result that would stay with him for the rest of his life.

But now he is training hard to go one better.

During summer, Hillis and his coach Tony Dodds, of Dunedin, trained continuously.

‘‘I wanted tofocus on what works,’’ Hillis said.

Heat training had been a focus, using saunas and heaters during training to simulate the hot conditions of Spain, where temperatures would be 30degC.

He wanted his body to adjust to the heat of Spain.

A hot summer here had made that task easier to achieve.

His build-up had included competing in the Ironman triathlon, in Taupo, on March 4.

He ranked 33rd out of 969 competitors, completing the triathlon in 9hr 45min 47sec.

Hillis said he was grateful to local businesses and organisations, including the Mataura Licensing Trust, for financial help towards the cost of his bid for triathlon glory.