Rio taught Gentle harsh Games lessons

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After her last five years, a pandemic Olympics is just another challenge for Australian triathlete Ashleigh Gentle.

The 30-year-old will compete at her second Olympics, first in the individual triathlon on July 27 and then, barring some unforeseen problem, the mixed relay four days later.

Thanks to COVID-19, Gentle has not competed in an international race since March 20 last year on the Sunshine Coast - the day Australia's borders were closed to non-residents.

She last raced overseas at the September, 2019 world triathlon grand final in Switzerland.

Now Gentle has had to reschedule her travel, with three connecting flights cancelled from her Brisbane home to Sydney because of the latest outbreak.

She and teammates Jaz Hedgeland and Emma Jeffcoat are due to fly from Sydney to Tokyo next Thursday night.

"Nothing has actually gone to plan, at all (since Rio)," Gentle told AAP.

"I feel like nothing else can really rattle me ... it's just another thing that hasn't gone to plan.

"I don't mean that like 'the world is against me', I've used it in a powerful sense, that I've had to readjust and re-evaluate so many times in these short five years.

"I'm okay. I'm going to be okay if I get told 'no, you can't do that'."

Gentle made her Olympic debut in Rio and it was a brutal initiation, culminating in a 26th placing.

Luggage went missing in transit and her bike turned up damaged.

At one stage, she borrowed running shoes from marathoner Jess Trengove.

This time, one of the triathlon team's support staff has already taken a spare bike to Tokyo for Gentle - just in case.

"Five years later, I'm still trying to grapple with the logistics of travelling to an Olympics," she said with a chuckle.

"It's just part of it."

Midway through 2019, Gentle's coach Jamie Turner abruptly had his Triathlon Australia contract terminated.

That meant Gentle had to rebuild her support network and she did so on her own terms, with no overall coach.

As Gentle puts it, she is now "driving the bus".

"I had to build myself back up," she said.

"I feel like it's worked out for the best, but it definitely wasn't an easy process."

Her fiance is Josh Amberger, an accomplished long-course triathlete, and he helps out with Gentle's training - but only so far.

"I guess that's why he's not my coach - we don't really have those (difficult) conversations," she said.

"I think that he thinks I give him a lot more attitude than any of the other people who are helping me.

"He says he tries to get someone else to interject when I need pulling into line, because he thinks because we're in a relationship, he cops it more than he should.

"That's probably true."

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