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Ben Allen and Helena Erbenova win the 2015 XTERRA Czech Championship




August 8, 2015 (Prachatice, Czech Republic) – Ben Allen of Australia and Helena Erbenova of the Czech Republic captured the 13th edition of the XTERRA Czech Championship on a hot afternoon in Prachatice.

With the win Erbenova also secured her third XTERRA European Tour (XET) Championship crown in four years (she also won in 2012 and 2013). XTERRA Czech was the ninth of 12 races in the XET and the fifth of seven Gold level events. Elite athletes count their best four Gold and three Silver finishes. In her seven scoring races this year Erbenova won three Gold events (Spain, Italy Czech), two silver events (Greece and Sweden) and was second at France and Portugal for a total of 607 points (625 is max possible).

It’s the former winter Olympians third win in a row on the European Tour and third win in four years at her home country championship race.

For Allen the victory marks his third XTERRA World Tour win this season (16th lifetime) but his first victory in the Czech Republic after five tries.

Ben Allen on the way to a win at  the XTERRA Czech Championship

Ben Allen on the way to a win at the XTERRA Czech Championship

“I’ve raced here many times before, and have always dreamed to take the win,” said Allen, who was making his first appearance on the XTERRA European Tour this season. “I’m so stoked to have accomplished that dream today. It wouldn’t have been possible without the love and support of my team.”

XTERRA managing director Dave Nicholas was on-site to take in the action and brings us this report…

The posters say 2002 – 2015 and the Czech XTERRA race keeps going. We never saw one like this however. The sun burned most of the day and the temps were in the high 80’s. The organizers were on it and put out lots more water and the local population turned out in droves, and while not exactly legal, houses offered bottles and cups of water to passing runners and bikers.

It was Welcome Back Ben and Jacqui Day with Allen coming out of the swim second, passing Roger Serrano until he finally broke free on the 2nd lap going up the first technical climb.

“Ben pulled me a bit and I forgot where I was” said the soaking wet Serrano. “I got to the steep part and was in the wrong gear and had to unclip and run the bike. After that I never saw him.”

Allen continued to hammer the bike having the fastest time by more than one-minute. He led by nearly three-minutes coming into T2 and ran a smart two, tough laps.

“I knew I had a gap on Roger but did not know where Bradley (Weiss) was” said Allen.

Weiss, the South African who won the XTERRA Asian Tour Championship this year, had rear tire problems on the first lap and had to stop. “There was a small cut that was just in the wrong place and no way I could fix it” he said while watching the race out on the course.

Serrano was worried about Weiss as well. He came by me on a nasty uphill asking “where is Bradley?” Brad was right next to me and when Roger completed the mountain loop the second time and came down the hill Brad ran out yelling “Here I Am.” Everybody laughed in the middle of a very hard race; but that is the XTERRA way isn’t it?

Tomas Kubek had a great day – almost. The man from Slovakia was right on Serrano’s heels coming into T2 after posting the 2d fastest bike. They were together going up the hill on the first lap, but when they came down Tomas was clearly in pain and had dropped back giving 2nd to Serrano by a wide margin.

There is a super fun, tricky, technical part on the bike loop that has a steep up ramp that turns 90 degrees and goes down over a small rock jump and then into a series of bermed esses that is just a joy to watch. Everyone from the best biker to the most tentative rider has to do it and the differences are amazing. Ben came by in the lead, Serrano second, Kubek third, Jan Pyott fourth and then you could hear screeching brakes, crunching tires locking up on the sandy base and four bikes came through so fast and furious I had no idea who was who until I looked back into my photo file. Vaclav Holub led with Lubos Truhlar on his rear wheel followed by Czech champ Jan Kubick and Austrian Michael Szymoniuk.

Things started settling down as the weather and a tough course started taking its toll. Allen had it pretty much his way, Roger was solid in second. Poor young Tomas Kubek had given it all on the bike and was headed backwards. First Jan Pyott passed him and then the battling Szymoniuk and Kubick. These two had dropped the others and ran to a photo finish with the Austrian less than two-seconds ahead. Kubek never gave up and had a grand 5ht place. He’s only 24 and has a lot of years in front of him.

“Great to be back on the Euro Tour again,” said Allen after the race. “Spending some time away has left me hungry to come back! Roger and I exited the water with a handy lead and we worked together on the bike for 12km before Roger faded and wasn’t able to stay with me. I know the bike course in Czech extremely well having raced here five times before. It’s not easy and if you red line on any of the climbs you will pay for it later in the race. I rode within myself and really enjoyed the race. Loads of the locals came out to support all the athletes on a very hot and humid day! The course in Czech is extremely challenging, steep climbs, rocky descents and encompasses the Czech culture riding/running in and out of the town square. Michal (Pilousek) and his team do an amazing job creating a fun filled weekend for all the participants. The food and beer is cheap and you will always walk away, never forgetting your Czech adventure!”

Pro Men

Pl Name Time Points
1 Ben Allen, AUS 2:40:19 100
2 Roger Serrano, ESP 2:44:27 90
3 Jan Pyott, SUI 2:45:02 82
4 Michael Szymoniuk, AUT 2:46:08 75
5 Jan Kubicek, CZE 2:46:10 69
6 Tomas Kubek, SVK 2:46:21 63
7 Lubos Truhlar, CZE 2:47:17 58
8 Pavel Andreev, RUS 2:47:44 53
9 Vaclav Holub, CZE 2:49:54 49
10 Jan Francke, CZE 2:52:41 45
Also: Veit Honle (41), Markus Benesch (37), Pavel Jindra (34), Malte Plappert (31)

DNF: Brad Weiss, Theo Blignaut, Clement Briere, Christopher Schwab, Lukas Kocar

The women put on an equally, maybe more interesting race. Jacqui Slack won the swim with Brigitta Poor second. Brigitta was wise in taking a few weeks off and missing Italy to recover. She had not missed a race in a very grueling season and showed some fresh legs today. Carina Wasle was 3rd and coming strongly on the bike but it was not to be her day. She flatted and fell far behind.

Up front Jacqui maintained a minute to minute and a half lead over Poor. Czech Champion Helena Erbenova was caught in a gaggle of men and was having problems getting past them. The same problem for Austrian Sandra Koblemueller.

“I am Austrian and my strength is climbing” she Koblemueller. “I was so far back in the swim I would get to a hill I could climb but people in front could not and I had to walk. I need to learn to swim,” she smiled.

 Helena Erbenova takes out the women's race

Helena Erbenova takes out the women’s race

Erbenova is such a racer that she never leaves anything on the table. If she is strong she wins, if not, she still pushes until her body gives up.

“Today was so different” she sighed. “I would be super strong and then my legs would go away. Carina passes me going up the hill and I pass her coming down. And oh, getting by those men was so hard.”

The heat began to get to Slack and while Erbenova had passed Brigitta for second, the Hungarian was not about to give in. Brigitta passed Erbenova to come into T2 with all three leading women together. It became a foot race and this is no pushover run course. Some is flat and some is on pavement but there are two really tough hills and two equally tough, steep, loose downhills. Helena was able to hold off Brigitta, but not by much (just 52 seconds). Jacqui fought a valiant battle against fatigue and came home a wonderful 3rd. As for our slow swimmer Sandra? She ran a fabulous 45-minute run segment beating the second fastest woman by nearly 4 minutes, actually having the 8th fastest run of the day and was able to pass Wasle for 4th.

So XTERRA Czech XIII is in the books. Awards and free beer tonight; a great race from a neat fresh water lake to a tasty, technical bike and run to a postcard perfect Bohemian village. What more could you ask for?
XTERRA Czech Photos


Pl Name Time Points
1 Helena Erbenova, CZE 3:07:04 100
2 Brigitta Poor, HUN 3:07:56 90
3 Jacqui Slack, GBR 3:12:04 82
4 Sandra Koblmueller, AUT 3:13:59 75
5 Carina Wasle, AUT 3:19:29 69
6 Verena Eisenbarth, GER 3:23:04 63
7 Lenka Cibulkova, CZE 3:27:06 58
8 Elke Innerebner, ITA 3:27:39 53


Year Men Women
2002 Olivier Marceau Candy Angle
2003 Nicolas Lebrun Jamie Whitmore
2004 Nicolas Lebrun Jamie Whitmore
2005 Olivier Marceau Renata Bucher
2006 Nicolas Lebrun Renata Bucher
2008 Nicolas Lebrun Carina Wasle
2009 Franky Batelier Carina Wasle
2010 Franky Batelier Renata Bucher
2011 Ronny Dietz Marion Lorblanchet
2012 Nicolas Lebrun Helena Erbenova
2013 Felix Schumann Helena Erbenova
2014 Ruben Ruzafa Kathrin Mueller
2015 Ben Allen Helena Erbenova


Erbenova made it mathematically impossible for anyone to catch her after today’s win and Roger Serrano nearly did the same thing with his second-place showing. With three races to go only Francois Carloni and Ruben Ruzafa have a mathematical chance at catching Serrano. For Ruzafa to contend he’d have to do the XTERRA Denmark / XTERRA European Championship double – a tough task as Denmark is on Saturday, August 29th and the European Championship in England is on Sunday, August 30th. Not impossible, but not easy. And while there are a myriad of scenarios where Carloni could catch Serrano all are tough and Serrano does hold his destiny in his own hands. With wins at the last three races (Germany, Denmark, England) nobody could match his final points score. XTERRA European Tour Points Rules Document.


After 9 – 8.8.15


1 Roger Serrano, ESP 526 67 56 82 67 82 DNS DNS 82 90
2 Francois Carloni, FRA 422 47 67 75 61 DNS 82 DNS 90 DNS
3 Ruben Ruzafa, ESP 375 DNS 75 100 DNS DNS 100 DNS 100 DNS
4 Jan Pyott, SUI 347 DNS 23 49 DNS 69 DNS 61 63 82
5 Kris Coddens, BEL 232 DNS DNS DNS 75 90 DNS 67 DNS DNS
6 Jan Kubicek, CZE 222 39 DNS DNS DNS 63 DNS 51 DNS 69
7 Albert Soley, ESP 219 43 39 90 47 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS
8 Henry Sleight, GBR 210 DNS 25 DNS 33 58 49 DNS 45 DNS
9 Arthur Forissier, FRA 175 DNS DNS DNS DNS 100 75 DNS DNS DNS
10 Markus Benesch, AUT 149 DNS DNS DNS 43 DNS DNS DNS 69 37
11 Tomas Kubek, SVK 145 DNS 43 DNS 39 DNS DNS DNS DNS 63
12 Yeray Luxem, BEL 136 DNS 61 DNS DNS 75 DNF DNS DNS DNS
13 Martial Schmidt, FRA 132 DNS DNS DNS DNS 49 34 DNS 49 DNS
14 Veit Hönle, GER 131 DNS DNS DNS DNS 53 37 DNS DNS 41
15 Nicolas Fernandez, FRA 122 75 47 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS
16 Fabrizio Bartoli, ITA 118 30 DNS DNS 30 DNS DNS DNF 58 DNS
17 Xavier Riart, ESP 105 36 DNS 69 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNF DNS
18 Tim Van Daele, BEL 103 25 27 DNS 51 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS
19 James Walker, GBR 102 DNS DNS DNS 21 DNS DNS 47 34 DNS
20 Malte Plappert, GER 100 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS 69 DNS DNS 31
22 Fabien Combaluzier, FRA 92 56 36 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS
23 Bradley Weiss, RSA 90 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS 90 DNS DNS DNF
26 Michael Szymoniuk, AUT 75 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS 75
27 Lars Van der Eerden, NED 66 21 DNP DNS DNS 45 DNS DNS DNS DNS
28 Gonzalo Bernal, ESP 63 DNS DNS 63 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS
29 Damien Guillemet, FRA 63 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS 63 DNS DNF DNS
30 Brice Daubord, FRA 61 61 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS
31 Ruben Salmeron, ESP 58 DNS DNS 58 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS
32 Rory Downie, GBR 58 33 DNP DNS 25 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS
33 Damien Derobert, FRA 58 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS 58 DNS DNS DNS
34 Lubos Truhlar, CZE 58 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS 58
35 Llewellyn Holmes, GBR 57 DNS 30 DNS 27 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS
36 Tomas Jurkovic, SVK 56 DNS DNS DNS 56 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS
37 Lars Erik Fricke, GER 56 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS 56 DNS DNS
38 Jose Borrino, ESP 53 DNS DNS 53 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS
39 Tomas Jiranek, CZE 53 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS 53 DNS DNS DNS
40 Fabio Guidelli, ITA 53 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS 53 DNS
41 Pavel Andreev, RUS 53 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS 53
42 Clement Briere, FRA 51 51 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNF
43 Hector Guerra, ESP 51 DNS 51 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNF DNS
44 Vaclav Holub, CZE 49 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS 49
46 Florian Luquet, FRA 45 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS 45 DNS DNS DNS
48 Christopher Schwab, AUT 43 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS 43 DNS DNF
49 Dominique Fernando, ESP 41 DNS DNS 41 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS
50 Antonello Pallotta, ITA 41 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS 41 DNS
52 Marc Pschebizin, GER 37 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS 37 DNS DNS DNS
53 Marco Spadaccia, ITA 37 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS 37 DNS
54 Grigoris Souvatzoglou, GRE 36 DNS DNS DNS 36 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS
55 Carlos Martinez, ESP 34 DNS DNS 34 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS
56 Pavel Jindra, CZE 34 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS 34
58 Sergio Espejo, ESP 31 DNS DNS 31 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS
59 Dr. Felix Schumann, GER 31 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS 31 DNS DNF DNS
60 Javier Oliver, ESP 28 DNS DNS 28 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS
61 Sebastian Veith, GER 28 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS 28 DNS DNS DNS
62 Arthur Serrieres, FRA 27 27 DNS DNS DNS DNF DNS DNS DNS DNS
63 Nicolas Corentin, BEL 25 DNS DNS DNS 25 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS
65 Simone Calamai, ITA 23 DNS DNS DNS 23 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS
66 Rob Woestenborghs, BEL 21 DNS 21 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS


1 Helena Erbenova, CZE 607 DNS 67 100 75 x82 90 75 100 100
2 Brigitta Poor, HUN 536 75 61 90 67 90 63 x61 DNS 90
3 Carina Wasle, AUT 387 DNS DNS DNS 61 100 DNF 67 90 69
4 Louise Fox, GBR 340 51 51 82 56 63 37 DNS DNS DNS
5 Jessica Roberts, GBR 259 47 DNF DNS 51 53 45 DNS 63 DNS
6 Sandra Koblemueller, AUT 211 67 DNS DNS DNS DNS 69 DNS DNS 75
7 Karin Hansen, SUI 197 43 47 DNS DNS 49 DNF DNS 58 DNS
8 Kathrin Mueller, GER 175 DNS 75 DNS DNS DNS 100 DNS DNS DNS
9 Morgane Riou, FRA 156 DNS 56 DNS 47 DNS 53 DNS DNS DNS
10 Myriam Guillot, FRA 151 DNS DNS DNS DNS 69 82 DNS DQ DNS
11 Elisabetta Curridori, ITA 138 56 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS 82 DNS
12 Maud Golsteyn, NED 136 61 DNS DNS DNS 75 DNS DNS DNS DNS
13 Lenka Cibulkova, CZE 99 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS 41 DNS DNS 58
14 Jacqui Slack, GBR 82 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS 82
15 Coralie Redelsperger, FRA 75 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS 75 DNS DNS DNS
16 Renata Bucher, SUI 75 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS 75 DNS
17 Olga Parfinenko, RUS 69 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS 69 DNS
18 Verena Eisenbarth, GER 63 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS 63
20 Becci Kaltenmeier, GER 58 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS 58 DNS DNS DNS
21 Sabina Rzepka, POL 53 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS 53 DNS
22 Elke Innerebner, ITA 53 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS 53
23 Celine Augueux, FRA 49 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS 49 DNS DNS DNS
24 Genziana Cenni, ITA 49 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS 49 DNS
25 Sofia Brites, POR 43 DNS 43 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS
26 Deniz Dimaki, GRE 43 DNS DNS DNS 43 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS
27 Danica Spiteri, MLT 39 39 DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS DNS
Next up: August 15 – XTERRA Germany Championship, Zittau*

The XTERRA Czech Championship was the 28th of 40 events where the fastest amateur athletes from around the world qualify for the 20th annual XTERRA World Championship at Kapalua, Maui on Nov. 1.

8-Feb XTERRA Philippines Championship (Brad Weiss / Flora Duffy)
22-Feb XTERRA South Africa Championship (Stuart Marais / Flora Duffy)
7-Mar XTERRA Motatapu (Dougal Allan / Jess Simson & Simone Maier)
28-Mar XTERRA Saipan Championship (Ben Allen / Jacqui Slack)
29-Mar XTERRA Malta (Nicolas Fernandez / Brigitta Poor)
29-Mar XTERRA Costa Rica (Rom Akerson / Lesley Paterson)
11-Apr XTERRA Guam Championship (Ben Allen / Carina Wasle)
11-Apr XTERRA New Zealand Championship (Braden Currie / Suzie Snyder)
18-Apr XTERRA Asia-Pacific Championship (Braden Currie / Flora Duffy)
25-Apr XTERRA West Championship (Francisco Serrano / Lesley Paterson)
25-Apr XTERRA Tahiti (Brice Daubord / Sarah Backler)
26-Apr XTERRA Reunion (Brad Weiss / Carla Van Huyssteen)
2-May XTERRA Asian Tour Championship (Brad Weiss / Myriam Guillot)
10-May XTERRA Brazil (Diogo Malagon / Sabrina Gobbo)
16-May XTERRA Southeast Championship (Braden Currie / Lesley Paterson)
16-May XTERRA Portugal (Ruben Ruzafa / Kathrin Mueller)
7-Jun XTERRA Spain Championship (Ruben Ruzafa / Helena Erbenova)
14-Jun XTERRA East Championship (Josiah Middaugh / Suzie Snyder)
20-Jun XTERRA Greece (Kris Coddens / Helena Erbenova)
27-Jun XTERRA Switzerland Championship (Arthur Forissier / Carina Wasle)
27-Jun XTERRA Mine over Matter (Karsten Madsen / Heather Pady)
4-Jul XTERRA Freedom Fest (Sergio Florian / Laurel Dudley)
5-Jul XTERRA Victoria (Brent McMahon / Zoe Dawson)
5-Jul XTERRA France Championship (Ruben Ruzafa / Kathrin Mueller)
11-Jul XTERRA Sweden (Sam Osborne / Helena Erbenova)
18-Jul XTERRA Mountain Championship (Josiah Middaugh / Flora Duffy)
25-Jul XTERRA Parry Sound (Sean Bechtel / Heather Pady)
26-Jul XTERRA Italy Championship (Ruben Ruzafa / Helena Erbenova)
8-Aug XTERRA Mexico (Josiah Middaugh / Fabiola Corona)
8-Aug XTERRA Czech Championship (Ben Allen / Helena Erbenova)
15-Aug XTERRA Germany Championship, Zittau*
16-Aug XTERRA Canmore, Alberta, Canada!
22-Aug XTERRA Adventure Fest Maui, Kapalua, HI, USA =
23-Aug XTERRA Quebec – Quebec City, Quebec, Canada!
29-Aug XTERRA Sleeping Giant, Thunder Bay, Ontario, Canada!
29-Aug XTERRA Denmark, Tilsvilde*
29-Aug XTERRA Japan, Hokkaido+ (start 2016 Asian Tour)
30-Aug XTERRA England / European Championship, Vachery Estate, Surrey*
13-Sep XTERRA Woolastook, Upper Kingsclear, New Brunswick, Canada
19-Sep XTERRA USA Championship, Ogden/Snowbasin, Utah, USA#
1-Nov XTERRA World Championship, Kapalua, Maui, Hawaii
* European Tour / + Asian Tour / # America Tour / ! Canada Series / = Hawaii qualifiers



Karl is a keen age group triathlete who races more than he trains. Good life balance! Karl works in the media industry in Australia and is passionate about the sport of triathlon.


News & Racing

ITU Moments of 2017: Katie Zaferes Crashes Bike in Yokohama, Drops Glasses, Wins Silver



In this video, USA triathlete Katie Zaferes recalls a couple “mishaps” before her silver finish at International Triathlon Union’s (ITU) World Triathlon Yokohama 2017.

Zaferes and Britain’s Jessica Learmonth crashed during the bike leg, and both recovered quickly.

During the run, she was head-to-head with fellow USA triathlete, Kirsten Kasper, when she dropped her sunglasses. She doubled back to retrieve them to avoid a littering penalty and possible disqualification from the race, before beating Kasper to the finish line.

The two people ahead of them were Bermuda’s Flora Duffy and Britain’s Sophie Coldwell, both of whom began the run roughly 70 seconds before the others. Duffy finished first in 01:56:18. Zaferes caught up with Coldwell, knocking her out of the podium to finish behind Duffy in 01:58:09. Kasper took bronze with a 01:58:17. Coldwell settled for fourth with a 01:58:48 finish.

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News & Racing

Matthew Sharpe Spearhead Canada/USA to historic Mixed Relay Win



Long-striding Canadian Matthew Sharpe saved his best till last to out-sprint the USA’s emerging star Morgan Pearson in a thrilling finish to today’s Triathlon Australia Mixed Relay Invitational at Runaway Bay.

Sharpe, 25 held off his training partner as the pair ran shoulder to shoulder in the closing stages of the inaugural Relay event – the latest addition to the 2020 Olympic program for Tokyo.

The two-day event started with 18 teams – 11 Australian teams and seven internationals from the USA, Canada/USA, Canada, Korea, Japan, Hong Kong and Wales – and after two heats on yesterday and a final qualifying heat this morning it came down to an A final of eight teams and in the end two teams – Canada/USA and the USA fought out the finish.

Sharpe, who will race for the Maple Leaf’s in next month’s Commonwealth Games, started the final run leg with a 20 metre lead off the bike as he set off around the Sports Super Centre track with 1.6km to run (after the 300m pool swim and eight-kilometres on the Luke Harrop Criterium bike course).

Pearson, the former US lifeguard and brilliant US College runner (with a 5km PB of 13:36.22), set off after his training mate and had caught him as the pair surged towards the finish shoot.

And when it looked like Pearson may just have enough gas left in the tank, the lanky Canadian surged again to steal the victory for the combined USA/Canadian team with Kevin McDowell (USA), Amelie Kretz (Canada) and Chelsea Burns (USA).

Certainly, an unusual combination of Canada and the USA between the two arch-rivals who rarely, if ever, come together on the sporting field – but this unique format allowed the hybrid foursome to come together under the coaching of Australian Jonno Hall – himself a former Australian champion road cyclist.

“I train with Morgan every day so I know how good he is and what he has to offer so I decided to let him in and then try to outsprint him in the end and it worked this time,” said Sharpe, who admitted the Mixed Team format was a winner.

“It was a great weekend, great racing, great format…happy to get away with the win.”

Pearson had an outstanding team with him with Tony Smoragiewicz, world ranked number four Kirsten Kasper and the talented Tamara Gorman.

Australia No 2 (Gillian Backhouse, Ashleigh Gentle, Ryan Bailie and Daniel Coleman) finished third and were in the hunt all day with Backhouse putting the team in a strong position with both Bailie and Gentle digging deep with superb legs and Coleman hanging on for third with Australia No 1 (Emma Jeffcoat, Matt Hauser, Amber Pate and Steve McKenna) flying home for fourth.

The event, with strong support by Gold Coast City Council’s $3,500 in prize money, will be a regular on the Triathlon Australia event calendar.

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News & Racing

Ironman 70.3 Racine Changes Hands and Repositions as a Short Course Event



The city of Racine, Wisconsin has partnered with Ohio company HFP Racing to announce the Real Racing International Triathlon. The race date, set for July 15th, was originally occupied by an IRONMAN 70.3 event but recently ended their partnership with the city of Racine, Wisconsin.

“Anyone that comes to this event will be impressed…it’s a visual stunner and it will be a race you’ll want to come back to year after year,” said, Shannon Kurek, HFP Racing’s founder. “It’s a major urban setting with the feel of [the Racine] community.”

The race is set for July 15th and is open to licensed professional triathletes and amateur triathletes. There will be a $25,000 purse prize for the professional division in the Olympic distance triathlon.  The event is offering a free individual race entry to all professionals with a valid license card from their home triathlon federation. Early bird pricing for registration ends in March and all registration closes in late June.

The course will start off with a swim in Lake Michigan, followed by a bike ride through downtown Racine and the surrounding communities, finishing with a run along the shoreline of Lake Michigan and through the North Bay and Windpoint communities. The bike and run courses are completely closed.

Kurek was recently interviewed for an episode of the Triathlon BizCast podcast, where he discusses the history of HFP’s relationship with events in Racine, Wisconsin, as well as more promotion on the new Real Racine International Triathlon. That podcast can be found at

Registration to compete in any of the Real Racing International Triathlon events is open and can be found at

For more information about the race, rules and regulations, and FAQs can be found at the Real Racine International Triathlon website at

Resources and things to do in the city can be found on the Real Racine website at

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News & Racing

Super League Triathlon and ITU Sign Memorandum of Understanding



Super League Triathlon (SLT) and the International Triathlon Union (ITU) have announced a pivotal memorandum of understanding (MOU) unveiling a partnership that covers key areas of the sport, with the overarching shared goal of further building triathlon around the world at many levels including youth development, fan building and audience engagement, and general promotion of the sport on a global scale.

The MOU, announced yesterday in Moscow during the European Triathlon Union Conference, sets in motion a partnership that will see SLT and the ITU working together on promoting gender equality, clean sport conforming to the WADA code and ITU Anti-Doping Rules, as well as open communication as key pillars of the cooperation. ITU is also committed to provide guidance in rules development of SLT’s new formats.

Said Michael D’hulst, “We are thrilled to be able to work with the governing body of triathlon so early on in Super League Triathlon’s establishment. We look forward to ensuring safe, fair and invigorating Super League events with ITU, and in so doing raise the profile of the sport.”

SLT will recognize ITU as the governing body of the triathlon sport, coordinating with them and the national federations for all SLT events. SLT will also work with ITU to ensure equality in prize money, contracts and participation of male and female athletes.

“ITU and Super League Triathlon have common goals to safely and efficiently develop triathlon, nurture new talent and provide platforms to showcase great champions globally. By working together to reach these goals and by leveraging one another’s strengths we will efficiently herald in an exciting new era of competition. This MOU represents an important moment for our sport and athletes, but it is only the beginning of what will be a long and fruitful partnership”, said ITU President and IOC Member, Marisol Casado.

The MOU is also designed to ensure that the ITU and Super League Triathlon calendars are regularly discussed to avoid events clashing. “The close alignment of ITU and Super League Triathlon marketing initiatives coupled with the innovation of the Formats and the League will serve to extend the reach of both organisations and bring the potential for greater scope in campaigns as well as through their respective platforms”, said Super League Triathlon Chief Executive Officer, Michael D’Hulst.

Super League Triathlon is a spectator-friendly race series which gives triathlon fans an action-packed and very up-close experience. Fans can follow the best triathletes in the world from start to finish, as the series travels to some of the world’s most spectacular racing destinations throughout the eight-month race season. Super League races are focused on attracting a new generation of audiences with the aim of fostering and inspiring future champions and promoting a healthy lifestyle for the wider community.

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News & Racing

Mixed Relay Invitational now a key in countdown to the Commonwealth Games



Four members of Australia’s Commonwealth Games triathlon team will continue to put the finishing touches to their preparations at this weekend’s innovative Triathlon Australia Mixed Relay Invitational at Runaway Bay.

The Australians – Matt Hauser, Ashleigh Gentle, Charlotte McShane and Gillian Backhouse will be among nine Games athletes from Australia, Canada and Wales who will line up in the 18 teams.

Australia will be represented by 11 teams with Canada, Wales, USA, Canada/USA, Hong Kong, Japan and Korea providing a real international flavour to an event that’s the most recent addition to the Olympic program in Tokyo.

Each individual athlete will complete a 300m swim in the Sports Super Centre 50m Olympic pool; eight kilometres on the bike on the Criterium loop before a 1.6km track run.

Hauser, Gentle, McShane and Jake Birtwhistle (who is in Launceston preparing for the Games) made up the Australian team that won the ITU World Mixed Relay Championship in Hamburg last year.

The exciting addition to the triathlon program will feature for only the second time at this year’s Commonwealth Games (on April 7) after the Alistair and Jonathan Brownlee-led English team who won the inaugural gold from South Africa and Australia in Glasgow four years ago.

Hauser will be joined on the Australia 1 team by the very-much in-form Mooloolaba World Cup winner Emma Jeffcoat and South Australian duo, 23-year-old rising star Amber Pate and another relative newcomer through 70.3, two-time SA Triathlete of the Year Steve McKenna.

Australia 2 will feature Games girls Gentle and Backhouse, Rio Olympian and Glasgow bronze medallist Ryan Bailie and Gold Coast’s Dan Coleman in a team that certainly looks the goods on paper.

Australia 3 will see Wollongong based trio, McShane, recent Abu Dhabi podium finisher Natalie Van Coevorden and latest addition to Jamie Turner’s group in Declan Wilson as well as promising Queensland Under 23 Nicholas Free.

Kirsten Kasper, the 2017 World ranked number four, who was second to Jeffcoat in Mooloolaba, will spearhead the USA team of Kevin McDowell, Chelsea Burns and Morgan Pearson.

Canadian Commonwealth Games athlete Dominika Jamnicky and Emy Legault are the stand-outs in Team Canada while fellow Games representative Matthew Sharpe will join countrywoman Amelie Kretz and US pair Tony Smoragiewicz and Tamara Gorman in the Mixed USA/Canada team.

Two Games representatives Iestyn Harrett and Olivia Mathias will lead the Welsh team that also includes Zoe Thomas and Chris Silver.

Hauser, who was an impressive runner-up to world ranked number four, South African Richard Murray at the Mooloolaba World Cup said the Mixed Relay Invitational was perfect timing leading into the Games.

“We will build this into our taper so it couldn’t be better, said Hauser,

“We’ve got a good 18 teams coming in as well so it’s fantastic preparation for all the guys really and it will be good to see how they’re all shaping up for that Mixed Relay.

“It’s an event that will be at (the Olympics) in Tokyo as well; it’s such a fantastic and exciting event and the Aussies will have a point to prove after winning the World Championships last year and I’m really looking forward to it.”

Hauser’s coach, Gold Coast National Performance Centre coach Dan Atkins admitted the whole reason he believes his young charge got onto the Commonwealth Games team was their strategic plan 16 months out.

“I said to Matt, ‘you know what I think there is an opportunity there Matt to put your hand up … you have raced a lot of relays; you have a lot of experience there and if you keep going out and putting your best foot forward then it will be hard for the selectors not to look at you,’ said Atkins, who knows the inclusion of the Triathlon Australia Mixed Relay will be a perfect pathway for Australia’s younger athletes heading towards future Olympic, Commonwealth Games and World Championships.

“That came off and now it’s a matter of putting his conditioning and race conditioning in place by having those few little hit outs over last weekend and this weekend to hopefully be selected for the Com Games in the relay again.”


The two-day event (with two heats on Saturday 10 am and 11:45 and a Repechage at 8 am the B Final at 10 am and A final at 11.30 am on Sunday) at the Runaway Bay Sports Centre is being supported by the City of Gold Coast with a podium prize purse of $3,500.00 on offer.

Each athlete will compete a full super sprint triathlon of a 300m swim, 8km cycle and 1600m run before tagging their teammate to begin the next leg.

Two females and two males will make up a single team. The women will commence the first leg before tagging onto the first male. The second female will follow before the second male brings it home.

National Performance Director for Triathlon Australia Justin Drew said the concept of a Triathlon Mixed Relay Invitational would give Australian elite athletes a chance to hone their relay skills against each other and to provide up-and-coming development athletes the chance to race against some of the world’s best triathletes, including members of the reigning World Championship team.

“This will provide the athletes with an ideal opportunity to race in what is one of the most exciting events added to the triathlon events calendar,” said Drew, who also praised the support of the City of Gold Coast.

“Our athletes will get the chance to compete in a high-level race situation and hone their skills, which will help develop them for future World Championships, Commonwealth and Olympic Games.”

Australia’s London Olympian and Triathlon Australia Development Coach Brendan Sexton has been tasked with the responsibility of pulling together the event and is excited to get the Mixed Relay to the start line.

“All competition will be conducted within the Runaway Bay Sports Super Centre including the swim in the 50m pool, the cycle on the Luke Harrop High Performance Cycling circuit and run on the athletics track, which will be an ideal venue,” said Sexton.

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News & Racing

Neal Henderson & Christine Palmquist Named 2017 USA Triathlon Coaches of the Year



USA Triathlon today recognized two of the most successful coaches in its ranks for the 2017 season, naming Neal Henderson and Christine Palmquist as Coaches of the Year.

Henderson (Boulder, Colo.), who coaches USA Triathlon Junior Elite Athlete of the Year Taylor Knibb, earned the honor of National Coach of the Year. In his first season working with Knibb, Henderson coached the 19-year-old standout to her first senior-level ITU World Triathlon Series podium with a silver in Edmonton. Under Henderson’s leadership, Knibb went on to successfully defend her title at the ITU Junior World Championships in Rotterdam, the Netherlands, in September.

In addition to his success with Knibb, Henderson coached Lindsey Jerdonek (Brecksville, Ohio) to a silver medal at the Yucatán ITU Triathlon World Cup, her first time cracking the World Cup podium. He led several U.S. athletes to success in professional non-drafting races, including victories for Alicia Kaye (Clermont, Fla.) at IRONMAN 70.3 Puerto Rico, Jason West (Boulder, Colo.) at the Philadelphia Escape Triathlon and Cameron Dye (Boulder, Colo.) at the Boulder Peak Triathlon.

Henderson also coached several international athletes to strong results in 2017 — led by Bermuda’s Flora Duffy, who earned her second straight ITU World Championship title and fourth consecutive XTERRA World Championship title. Joe Gambles of Australia placed third for elite men at the Penticton ITU Long Distance Triathlon World Championship, and Paula Findlay of Canada took the win at the Boulder Peak Triathlon, both under Henderson’s tutelage.

He has also served the sport outside of coaching itself, developing the four-dimensional power (4DP) testing methodology for cycling power that is revolutionizing the way cyclists and triathletes train on the bike.

“As a coach who volunteered with the first USA Triathlon National Team in 1996 and who attended the first public USA Triathlon Level I Coaching Certification Clinic in 1998, I’m extremely thankful to be recognized by USA Triathlon for this honor,” Henderson said.

Palmquist (Geneva, Ill.) was named Paratriathlon Coach of the Year for her achievements leading U.S. paratriathletes to success at the elite level. In 2017, she coached National Team athletes at the USA Paratriathlon National Championships in Pleasant Prairie, Wisconsin, and the Rotterdam ITU Paratriathlon World Championships. U.S. athletes raced to seven medals in Rotterdam, including a gold from Grace Norman (Jamestown, Ohio) in the women’s PTS5 class.

Palmquist had a lead coaching role last season at training camps for the USA Paratriathlon National Team in Colorado Springs, Colorado, and the USA Paratriathlon Development Team in Chula Vista, California.

In addition to her team coaching role, she individually coached Melissa Stockwell (Chicago, Ill., PTS2), who earned a silver medal in October at the Sarasota-Bradenton ITU Paratriathlon World Cup, and Patty Collins (Alexandria, Va., PTS4), who earned bronze medals at the ITU Paratriathlon World Championships and the Yokohama ITU World Paratriathlon event in addition to earning a national title in 2017.

Palmquist also played a key role in coach development for the sport of paratriathlon last year, contributing to the manual and presentation materials before providing in-person instruction at the first-ever USA Paratriathlon Coaching Certification Clinic held in July in Colorado Springs.

“What a tremendous honor,” Palmquist said. “I am grateful for each athlete, coach and mentor who has contributed to my professional journey. To get to do what I love most is amazing.”

USA Triathlon named its full roster of 2017 Athletes of the Year  — including Age-Group Triathletes, Age-Group Duathletes, Elites and Junior Elites — earlier this week. Click here to view the full list of honorees.

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