Twins Jayden and Luke Schofield, known in the triathlon world as the “Dead Heat Duo” struck again at the inaugural 2024 Oceania Triathlon Super Sprint Championships on the Gold Coast at the weekend.

The long-serving Sydney University Athletic Club members finished first and second ahead of Brayden Mercer in the gruelling event that included a 150m swim leg, a 4km bike leg and a 1km run. Jayden and Luke finished in 00:12.47, with Mercer close by in 0012:54.

The Super Sprint athletes had navigated through a demanding event format featuring qualifiers, repechages, semi-finals, and finals, with some finding themselves racing up to four times in the day. The 33-year-old Schofields progressed through the competition and once again crossed the final tape together with Jayden being awarded the gold.

“Win’s don’t come around that often, not anymore anyway,” Jayden said. “Anytime you have the chance to win a race it’s super nice. Being able to grab the tape and hold it up is special, so I definitely appreciate it a lot more than I might have done when I was a little bit younger – when things seemed to be a bit easier and smoother.”

The win marked Schofield’s first Oceania Triathlon title and he was pleased that it came at the Gold Coast Performance Centre in Runaway Bay. “I’ve raced here for years as a junior and to come here and win is unbelievable,” Schofield said “I absolutely love the super sprint format. It falls into what my strengths are and we just love the pain of fast running, fast riding and the transitions. That’s what makes the race really.”

He said clinching top spots with his twin-brother added an extra layer of significance to the victory. “We’ve had a fair few sprint finishes, he’s always a tough athlete to beat. Even though he is my brother, he’s a phenomenal athlete,” Schofield said. “You can be fitter than him but trying to dig deeper than him is really the tough part.”

The identical twins, who have combined Engineering and Science degrees from Sydney University, started competing in the multi-discipline event during their last three years at Sydney Boys’ High School and when they found themselves pushing each other at the end of the running leg they sometimes breasted the tape together.

“It’s not something we plan,” Luke said. “It’s happened about 20 times, but mostly when we were in high school events. We train together and have friendly rivalry. We have the same genetics and similar ability so if a race comes down to us battling it out we sometimes finish together and enjoy the moment.”

The pair arrived at the University of Sydney campus in 2017. “We joined the Sydney Uni Athletics Club in first year and went on the Sydney Uni Sport & Fitness Elite Athlete Program (EAP) in 2018,” Luke said. “We then spent our third year as exchange students at the University of California, San Diego, and came back on the EAP in 2020.”

“It was super helpful for both of us,” Jayden said. “If there was  a clash of assignment or exam times with major athletic events, the EAP program was really helpful in getting extensions and exam modifications. The operation is run very smoothly.”

As well as competing in events across Australia, the twins have competed in Continental Cups in Japan, in Collegiate Triathlon events in the USA,  and in Canada as part of the Super  Triathlon Series which qualified them for events in Malta, Majorca, Singapore and Jersey in the UK.

As for finishing side by side again, that’s a spur of the moment decision. “With the different disciplines, the lead can change as the race unfolds,” Luke once told SUSF. “Sometimes we’ll be in the same pack in a race and we can gauge how each other’s going and work off each other; see who’s burning off fuel. And if we happen to be contesting the end of the run leg, well …”.