MOOLOOLABA ironman David Dellow has been forced to tear up his world championship plan due to a "niggling" hip injury.
Former Noosa Triathlon winner Dellow had hoped to qualify for the Ironman World Championship in Kona, Hawaii, in October through last weekend's Asia-Pacific Championship in Melbourne.
However, he was forced to withdraw from the event last week.
Dellow, ninth in his Kona debut last year, will instead attempt to qualify for the worlds at Ironman Cairns in June.
He won that event last season.
While he is looking forward to trying to defend the title, his failure to qualify in Melbourne means he has had to delay his planned European training schedule ahead of the worlds.
Dellow said the injury was "nothing major", however, although the exact nature of the problem would not be revealed to him until today, after scans on Monday.
"It's started to improve already," he said.
"I was going harder than usual in training in Europe earlier this year to get ready for Kona (and that was how the injury occurred).
"I'm pretty optimistic ... fingers crossed it's not anything too major.
"I'll have a slow build-up into the next couple of weeks and get ready to go to Cairns."
Dellow said he was desperate to qualify for the world championship, which was won last year by Noosa-based Pete Jacobs.
Dellow has dreamed of winning it since childhood, and at age 33 believes his best ironman years await.
"Even in the high 30s is still relatively young for an ironman," he said.
"I'm still getting there and building strength (and) I'm sure I'm in a position now where I'm capable of winning it. It's just up to me to do it."
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