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Women’s Paratriathlon debuts at Paralympics

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On September 11, the fastest women from Paratriathlon will take to Copacabana Beach as the first edition of ladies to ever race for Paralympic gold medals in the sport of paratriathlon.

Stacked with powerhouse lineups, the women will get underway on Sunday at 10am with the women’s PT4 sport class. Three minutes later, the PT2 sport class take off, while PT5 women go in waves beginning at 11:35am BRT.

The women will swim 750m starting at Copacabana Beach, then bike 20km followed by a 5km run along Atlantic Avenue.

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PT2:
In the women’s PT2 sport class, it looks like it will be a it’ll be a red, white and blue suffer fest with three incredibly dominant American women lining up. The USA’s three women are the top ranked athletes in the sport class and went 1-2-3 at the test event last year.

Allysa Seely leads the trio as the top-ranked woman on the Paralympic Qualification List having won every race she entered since Edmonton in 2015, including the 2015 World Championships. While the 2016 World Champs didn’t count towards her Paralympic qualification, she won that race, too.

Melissa Stockwell, who was the first wounded female in Iraq, follows in second ranking, while teammate Hailey Danisewicz is ranked third. However, while Danisewicz is third amongst them, she won the 2016 test event to clench her spot in Rio. In addition to a string of podiums to her name, Stockwell has experience on her side, having swum at the 2008 Beijing Paralympic Games.

Their toughest competition will come from Finland’s Liisa Lilja, who beat out Danisewicz for silver at World Championships in July. Just two years into the sport, the young Finnish athlete missed the podium at World Champs last year behind the Americans.

Fun note, after she finishes up at triathlon, Seeley will head over to athletics to finish up her Paralympic Games competing in the 200m.

PT2 Women’s start list

  • Rakel Mateo Uriarte ESP
  • Yukako Hata JPN
  • Shahrzad Kiavash SWE
  • Liisa Lilja FIN
  • Elise Marc FRA
  • Hailey Danisewicz USA
  • Allysa Seely USA
  • Melissa Stockwell USA

 

PT4:
While the US women dominate the PT2 sport class, it’s Great Britain that has the strong hold on the women’s PT4 sport class.
Lauren Steadman, Faye McClelland and Clare Cunningham all graced the podium at the 2014 World Championships, with Steadman following up again last year for a second consecutive World Title. The top-ranked Brit hasn’t lost a race that’s she’s finished since 2014.

Steadman and Cunningham are both strong out in the front, with both of them having competed in swimming at two Paralympic Games.

However, perhaps their greatest challenge comes from young buck Grace Norman (USA), who won this year’s World Championships when Steadman crashed out and finished second at the World Championships last year. She’s incredibly quick off the bike, as the only woman to ever run under 20 minutes in the 5k run. Like her compatriot Seely in PT2, Norman will go on to run the 400m at athletics after triathlon.

One of the larger sport classes to take off on September 11, the race features a wide variety of talent, from young 18 year old Norman to her teammate 47 year old Patricia Collins, who was injured in a training accident in 2006; continued to work at the Pentagon until she retired as a Colonel last year.

PT4 Women’s start list

  • Alisa Kolpakchy UKR
  • Kate Doughty AUS
  • Claire Mclean AUS
  • Patricia Collins USA
  • Grace Norman USA
  • Gwladys Lemoussu FRA
  • Chantal Givens CAN
  • Clare Cunningham GBR
  • Faye Mcclelland GBR
  • Lauren Steadman GBR
  • Ana Raquel Lins BRA

PT5:
No doubt about it, the one to beat in the women’s PT5 sport class is Australia’s Katie Kelly. A new comer to the elite side of triathlon, she’s been involved in the sport for many years, but only took up ITU racing in the last two years. In that short span, she’s never lost a race, including the 2015 World Championships.

What Alison Patrick (GBR), Melissa Reid (GBR) and Susana Rodriguez (ESP) lack in undefeated records, they make up for in experience. Patrick was the World Champion before Kelly entered the scene, and regained the crown at this year’s World Championships in Kelly’s absence. She also won the Rio Test Event last year, which Kelly missed, meaning Patrick has an upper hand on knowledge of the course.

Behind Patrick, Reid, Rodriguez and Joleen Hakker B1 (NED) often trade off podium performances, meaning all of the women can factor on September 11. It was Patrick and Reid that garnered medals at the Rio Test Event last summer, along with the USA’s Patricia Walsh.

However, Kelly is hedging her bets by bringing one the sport’s most experienced triathletes as her guide Michellie Jones, who herself is an Olympic triathlon silver medallist.

PT5 Women’s start list

  • Guide: Maria Isabel Gallardo García ESP
  • Susana Rodriguez ESP
  • Guide: Sasha Boulton CAN
  • Christine Robbins CAN
  • Alison Patrick GBR
  • Guide: Hazel Smith GBR
  • Melissa Reid GBR
  • Guide: Nicole Walters GBR
  • Joleen Hakker B1 NED
  • Guide: Linda Van Vliet NED
  • Guide: Yuu Nishiyama JPN
  • Atsuko Yamada JPN
  • Guide: Michellie Jones AUS
  • Katie Kelly AUS
  • Elizabeth Baker USA
  • Guide: Jillian Petersen USA
  • Guide: Jessica Jones Meyers USA
  • Patricia Walsh B1 USA
  • Guide: Francine Meehan IRL
  • Catherine Walsh IRL

A cyclist and tech geek at heart with a passion for new shiny things and a huge appetite for triathlon. I spend most of my time between managing two of Australia's best triathletes and a traditional corporate life.

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Belgian Timothy Van Houten and American Lisa Roberts win Challenge Madrid

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The first edition of Challenge Madrid was disputed today, with triathletes like Iván Alvarez, Gustavo Rodríguez, Dylan McNeirce y Sofie Goos, amongst others, as big favourites on the departure line. Lisa Roberts and Dolça Ollé, who made their debut in this distance, were also amongst the favourites. The competition started at 7.50AM in Buitrago de Lozoya with a 3.8 km swim in the Riosequillo dam.

First out of the water was New Zealander Dylan McNeirce, with a 5.42 minutes advance over Portuguese Jose Estraingeiro, who was followed by Zoltán Petsuk and David Castro. Mikel Elgezaban came out 10 minutes later and Alejandro Santamaria and Iván Alvaréz more than 11 minutes.

On the cycling leg, the triathletes faced 180 km throughout the Madrid Region on a demanding circuit with over 3000 meters positive incline and with New Zealander Mc Neirce heading the race. Another protagonist of this segment was Spaniard Mikel Elguezabal, who showed his strong point and started to take over at Rascafría, just like Timothy Van Houten, who would end up winning the competition.

Once in the town of El Escorial, Belgian Van Houten took the lead with a 42-second advance over Mikel and 1:50 over McNeirce; he reached T2, on Puente del Rey in Madrid Río, in first position. Dylan McNeirce finished second at 6:19. Gustavo Rodríguez also ran a good cycling leg and finished fifth at the second transition, followed by local Madrid triathletes Javier García, sixth, Alejandro Santamaría, seventh and Ramón Ejeda in ninth position.

In the 42 km run, Belgian Timothy Van Houten was able to keep his first position until the end, where he earned a moving victory in this first edition of Challenge Madrid with a final time of 8:33:23.

“It has been a spectacular competition, an amazing circuit with lots of people cheering who made you feel at home,” said Van Houten who appeared extremely emotional and did not hesitate a second to publicly address very touching words to his parents “I could not be here without them. Thank you for supporting and helping me; I am very happy to have earned this victory in Madrid, it is just as much yours.”

German Lukas Krämer (08:49:09) finished second. Alejandro Santamaría (8:56:21) was third and completed the men’s podium.

The performance of great New Zealander triathlete McNeirce was also notable, although he had to forfeit in the second round of the run segment due to back troubles “I enjoyed the race very much, and I felt very good. The atmosphere was spectacular. Unfortunately, I experienced back aches during the second lap of the run and I had to forfeit but… I will be back

Women’s race

Gabriela Zelinka finished the swim leg first, closely followed by Yvette Grice and Dolca Ollé in third position. Favourite Sofie Goos finished fourth at 20 seconds and Lisa Roberts at more than 7 minutes.

Once on the bike, Sofie Goos was the first to cross Rascaría with a 1-minute advance over Gabriela Zelinka and1:49 over Lisa Roberts who was third after a spectacular comeback. Dolça was fourth, a full 15 minutes after Goos. The situation remained the same until the very last part of the cycling leg, where Lisa Roberts took over her opponents and reached T2 with a 3:20 advance over Gabriela Zelinka and 4:34 over Sofie Goos. Dolça finished this second segment in fifth position.

In the 42 km run, American Lisa Roberts increased her advantage and arrived alone at the finish line to win the race in a total time of 09:32:51

Gabriela Zelinka finished second, followed by another big favourite, Sofie Goos, who took the third position.

“This is my first long distance triathlon”
Lisa Roberts, the winner of the women’s race, said “I am very happy to win here. There is a spectacular atmosphere and the whole circuit was really moving, especially this finish in the Puerta del Sol.”

Relays

Team “Las Perlas” won the relay race in a total time of 09:32:52

MEN’S PODIUM

  1. Timothy Van Houten 08:33:23
  2. Lucas Krämer 08:49:09
  3. Alejandro Santamaría 08:56:21

WOMEN’S PODIUM

  1. Lisa Roberts 09:32:51
  2. Gabriella Zelinka 09:51:42
  3. Sofie Goos 10:10:12

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Super League: Jersey Brings Out The Best For Kristian Blummenfelt

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A new champion has arisen at Super League Jersey. Kristian Blummenfelt of Norway backed up his win in yesterday’s Triple Mix with the win in today’s Eliminator to score the maximum of 50 points and take the Super League Jersey overall win. Blummenfelt took out the top spot in five out of six stages this weekend, a product of a year in which he has come into his own. In the previous Super League Triathlon event on Hamilton Island, he made a mark by winning two out of the three Eliminator stages, then went on to capitalize on this aggressive racing by taking three silvers and one bronze on the world circuit, finishing third in the world.

The podium for Eliminator mirrored the overall podium as Great Britain’s pride Jonathan Brownlee took second place over the three-stage race and in overall points, knocking erstwhile runner-up and defending Super League Hamilton Island champion Richard Murray of South Africa down to third overall.

The Eliminator format has three stages of swim-bike-run whittling the field down to the fastest 15 and then 10 to race for victory. The conditions were even wetter than the women’s race held an hour earlier as rain continued to pour down on Jersey. Not only would the fastest survive, but also the ones with the least mishaps.

Stage 1

Jake Birtwhistle and Brownlee were among the first few to exit the 300-meter swim and head out onto the five-kilometer bike leg composed of five laps around a one-kilometer circuit. The wet roads made what was already a highly technical course even more threatening. The optimal spot seemed to be up in front of the athletes with good bike handling skills. Those hanging off the back were more inclined to take risks to bridge back up, with crashes taking athletes like Dmitri Polyanskiy of Russia and Ben Dijkstra of Great Britain out of the running.

Kristian Blummenfelt closes out the final stage of the Eliminator. Photo: Googsi Creative / The Studio M

Blummenfelt found himself in the front bunch on the two-lap run on the one-kilometer circuit and could not resist taking the Stage 1 top finish ahead of Brownlee and ascendant Aussie Aaron Royle, who finished ahead of compatriots Birtwhistle and Matt Hauser, who got the last pontoon spot into Stage 2.

Stage 2

Hauser’s 15th place finish from the previous stage became a distant memory as he pushed out to the front of the swim with Brownlee on his feet. He was determined to make the final stage unlike on Hamilton Island when he was eliminated as the 11th finisher in the second stage.

Jersey pro athlete Dan Halksworth competed as a wild card at Super League Jersey. Photo: Googsi Creative / The Studio M

Strong swim-bikers Ben Kanute of the USA and Australia’s Ryan Fisher pushed the bike pace to ensure they could finish the run in the top 10 even with fast runners coming up behind them. While Blummenfelt fell back to as far as 11th on the bike, this was more of an energy-conserving move as he found the front on the run again, this time with Royle in second and Brownlee in third. But finish order within the top 10 would hardly matter, as it was the Stage 3 finish that counted for the win.

Stage 3

Athletes poured out every last ounce of their speed on this final stage of the Eliminator. Aggressive racing would either be rewarded with a win or a crash out as the rain grew even more insistent. Once again, Hauser led from the swim out onto the bike with Kanute chasing. Brownlee, showing his mastery of these trademark British conditions, sat in third. Murray was on the back foot from the swim and cycled in the back of the bunch. However, with most of the men getting off the bike together, an excellent transition put Murray right back in the race — for second.

Blummenfelt had gone off the front on the final lap of the bike. Once his running shoes were on, he shot off in what looked like a controlled sprint and never let up. It was all Brownlee could do to keep him in sight, and Murray ran out of road to fight for the runner-up position. Hauser in fourth led the final Aussie contingent, followed by Birtwhistle and Royle.

Brownlee said, “I had a massive advantage there with British weather and British crowds so thank you to everyone for coming out even in this weather. I enjoyed today; I actually think I got fitter from yesterday, but Kristian was far better than us all the whole weekend and I was absolutely nowhere near him today. Well done, and well done to Richard as well. It’s great fun, it’s great racing and hopefully, everyone’s enjoyed it.”

Matt Hauser gets a handshake from Kristian Blummenfelt post-race. Photo: Googsi Creative / The Studio M

Murray responded, “I think Kristian was definitely ahead of both Jonny and myself today as well as yesterday but I gave it everything and the crowd were amazing. The weather didn’t play ball but the guys were safe out there most of the time and we had a great time.”

Blummenfelt said he could not help his gutsy approach to the day’s racing, which has ultimately won for him $18,000 in prize money. “I tried to play a little bit safe in the beginning and just make it inside the top 15 and top 10 but it’s just so hard to hold back when I like racing,” he admitted. “Hopefully I get winter off training now and I’ll be fit for next year.”

With both pro races completed, the Corporate Mix final leaderboard has also been computed. The Corporate Mix overall win relies on the total of a team’s points garnered from their relay finish position and the points from their pro male and female athletes’ finish positions. Team Comprop wins the Corporate Mix with 98 points, boosted by Blummenfelt’s 50 points. First Names Group Team 2 benefited from Katie Zaferes’ 50 points from the twin wins in the Triple Mix and Eliminator, ending up in second with 81 points. The Ravenscroft Titans found themselves in third with 61 points, propped up by their relay team’s great finishes.

Richard Murray, Kristian Blummenfelt, and Jonathan Brownlee hold their prize checks at the awarding. Photo: Googsi Creative / The Studio M

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Super League: Katie Zaferes crowned First Female Champion in Jersey

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Super League Triathlon crowned its first queen with Katie Zaferes taking out today’s Eliminator race and the overall win at Super League Jersey. The Eliminator podium also mirrored the final overall podium, with Summer Cook besting Nicola Spirig to the runner-up spot both in the race itself as well as in total points earned. The Eliminator format involved three stages of swim-bike-run, with the field progressively growing smaller. Only the top 15 finishers of Stage 1 would go on to Stage 2, and only the ten fastest finishers of Stage 3 could compete for the Eliminator win.

Wet conditions today stood in stark contrast to yesterday’s sunshine. As the technical bike course shimmered with leftovers puddles from a midday storm, athletes needed to play a tactical game to ensure they stayed rubber-side up.

Stage 1

Great Britain’s Sophie Coldwell led through the 300-meter swim with Kirsten Kasper of the USA and Carolina Routier from Spain in second and third, but a logjam at the bike mount allowed Coldwell to break clear. Compatriot Jodie Stimpson found her way up onto Coldwell’s wheel, with the two athletes working together to control their race over the five-kilometer bike course where slick cobblestones and tight corners posed many dangers to success.

A wise decision it seemed, for further back in the pack small mistakes on slick patches of road cost athletes some skin and more as they crashed into each other. Two pairs of athletes crashed in the same location one lap apart, taking them out of contention for Stage 2. Desirae Ridenour of Canada and Emma Pallant of Great Britain, and Barbara Riveros of Chile and Emma Jeffcoat of Australia.

Sophie Coldwell and Jodie Stimpson working together on the bike leg. Photo: Googsi Creative / The Studio M

Meanwhile, the leading Brits proved well capable of handling the wet, riding into transition with a clear lead for the run. Yesterday’s leading athletes Zaferes and Spirig seemed content to let Coldwell and Stimpson surge ahead; after all, one only needed to rank 15th and higher to move on to the next round.

Coldwell and Stimpson high-fived each other and crossed the finish line together after the two-kilometer run, while Spirig was unable to resist her competitive nature and surged to third place.

A race-within-a-race unfolded for 15th place, with Claire Michel of Belgium clinching the final spot into Stage 2 ahead of Russia’s Anastasia Abrosimova.

Stage 2

The big names were still among the 15 to toe the Stage 2 start line. Coldwell and Stimpson emerged from the water in front, with a few athletes in the back caught in some accidental fisticuffs on the swim.

Zaferes, Spirig, and Kasper stuck close to the two Brits to hit the run in the lead group. Coldwell faded, allowing Spirig, Zaferes, and Kasper to finish second, third, and fourth to Stimpson.

It became a heated race for the last five spots on the Stage 3 pontoon. After a while on her own, Cook finally bridged up to the leaders. Rachel Klamer, Charlotte McShane, Emmie Charayron, and Melanie Santos beat Non Stanford for the chance to race once more.

Stage 3

While the athletes had been largely tactical through the first two stages keeping their chips close, Stage 3 of the Eliminator was where they would spend them. It was time to see who could go fastest over the now-familiar course.

The pace was up as athletes stretched out single-file over the swim. Coldwell once again was first out of the water, followed by two Americans Kasper and Cook. The three pushed to make a break on the bike, but a hard-charging Spirig pulled Stimpson and Zaferes right back up onto them.

The run determined who would be eliminated in each stage. Photo: Googsi Creative / The Studio M

It seemed a battle between Spirig of Switzerland and Zaferes of the USA as they got onto the run, but it was here where the American’s fleet feet took her to the front, never to look back.

Meanwhile, Cook’s track-and-field background came good as she put on a surge of her own to pip Spirig for second. While Kasper attempted to make it an all-American podium sweep, Spirig held strong to clinch third.

“On the run, I knew when I made the pass I had to gap them or else it was game over. So I really just went for it and I tried not to look back. I was running pretty scared at the end but it worked out,” said Cook post-race. “I was really nervous yesterday morning and I wasn’t sure what to expect. I was a little bit scared but I ended up thinking last night that yesterday’s format was one of the most fun races I’ve ever done. Today was pretty fun too but I’m still in a little bit too much pain to appreciate it yet.”

While Spirig slipped to third overall after coming in second yesterday, finishing at the pointy end in a top-caliber field was a testament to her strength and quality as an athlete. She said, “It’s good fun, I think it was tough for everyone today with the weather and with the format but well done to the girls and I think I did my best. I’m very happy.”

Zaferes takes home the top prize of $18,000 and the first women’s trophy for Super League Triathlon after a consistent season on the world triathlon circuit. “It’s just so cool, it’s a different style of racing. It’s a fun style but it is so painful and you cannot hide anywhere,” she said. “I would love to do more of these.”

Cook, Zaferes, and Spirig holding their prize checks at the awarding. Photo: Googsi Creative / The Studio M

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Super League: Corporate Mix Teams Hungry for the Lead

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The run course along the Elizabeth Marina board walk. Photo: Googsi Creative / The Studio M

In the second day of Super League Jersey Corporate Mix racing, Team Comprop is once again leading the rankings, its members coming out firing on all cylinders to win the team relay race against 16 other teams from nine corporate entities. First Names Group Team 2 and the Ravenscroft Titans followed across the finish line, maintaining the top three overall. Like in Day 1, the competition was held over the Sprint Pursuit format, which involves racing over a 300-meter swim around the Elizabeth Marina, a 5-kilometer cycle leg on a cobblestoned and technical course and a 2-kilometer run done over two stages with a pursuit-style start in Stage 2.

Team Comprop is still in the lead after two days of racing. Photo: Googsi Creative / The Studio M

Team Comprop and First Names Group Team 2 took first and second respectively in both Sprint Pursuit stages, but the Jersey Triathlon Club Junior Team 1 put up a brave fight to take third in Stage 1. The Ravenscroft Titans had a slow start off the blocks and crossed the Stage 1 line in ninth place, but made up for their deficit and recovered third place in Stage 2.

The Corporate Mix overall win relies on the total of a team’s points garnered from their relay finish position and the points from their pro male and female athletes’ finish positions. Team Comprop has pro men’s leader Kristian Blummenfelt on its roster while First Names Group Team 2 has women’s leader Katie Zaferes, and if both athletes hold their form, they will deliver the top two spots in the Corporate Mix to their teams.

Both teams from Santander International may have a chance to rise higher in the overall rankings with better finishes today than yesterday. Their pro athletes Fernando Alarza and Carolina Routier will certainly do their best to better yesterday’s results in their Eliminator races later today. The Eliminator will put them through three stages of swim-bike-run, with only the fastest 15 and then the fastest 10 getting through to the next stages. It will remain to be seen whether they can get to finish and earn those all-important series points.

Corporate Mix swimmers line up for their pontoon start. Photo: Googsi Creative / The Studio M

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Super League: Katie Zaferes stuns in Triple Mix on Day 1

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Katie Zaferes of the USA stunned dual Olympic medalist Nicola Spirig at the inaugural Super League Triathlon women’s race in Jersey, Channel Islands. The ascendant American was never too far off the front throughout, and took the overall win with a 19-second lead over the speedy Swiss. Compatriot Summer Cook rounded out the first women’s podium for the revolutionary race series. Triple Mix is a three-stage race with a 10-minute break between stages and a pursuit-style start in Stages 2 and 3.

Stage 1: Swim-Bike-Run

Carolina Routier, Sophie Coldwell, and Emma Jeffcoat found clear water off the pontoon start and came out of the 300-meter swim together, but most of the athletes emerged together to form a huge chase pack which swallowed the lead swimmers once on the bike leg.

Coldwell and British compatriot Jodie Stimpson worked to put pressure through the first few laps of the five-kilometer bike ride. With the field splintering between a large front group and solo athletes trying to bridge the gap, those off the back fell victim to the 90-second elimination rule. Sameera Al Bitar found herself more than 90 seconds behind the lead athlete and was forced to retire partway through the bike.

Pontoon start for the Women’s Triple Mix Stage 1 of Super League in Jersey. Photo: Googsi Creative / The Studio M

Stimpson, Coldwell, and Claire Michel of Belgium came off the bike together, but with the athletes so close together, Spirig emerged out front with Zaferes right on her shoulders. Summer Cook managed to stay in contention despite struggling with the technical bike course, while Lucy Hall and Mariya Shorets were eliminated after the bike leg.

During the two-kilometer run, Michel, Spirig, and Zaferes took turns out front, but it was Michel who took the tape ahead of Spirig and Zaferes. Cook ran herself into fourth.

Stage 2: Run-Bike-Swim

With only 10 minutes to recover before starting another two-kilometer run and only seconds separating the lead three women, it didn’t take long for Zaferes to move up front. However, Spirig, Cook, and Michel came with her surge to create a 20-second gap to chasers Stimpson, Coldwell, and Rachel Klamer.

Jodie Stimpson, Sophie Coldwell, and Rachel Klamer run as a chase group. Photo: Googsi Creative / The Studio M

Spirig put pressure on and gapped the leaders with her trademark bike power and great handling, but after a while Zaferes answered the surge. Apparently, Zaferes had thought one of her tires had gone flat, but once confirmed that was not the case, she confidently rode back onto Spirig’s back wheel before taking the front into transition.

Zaferes made sure to hit the water ahead of Spirig, and her stellar technique ensured she crossed the Stage 2 finish line first.

Thanks to the gap the two had created to the rest of the field, an additional seven women were eliminated, while Laura Lindemann took a nasty bike spill but was able to continue.

Stage 3: Bike-Swim-Run

The Swiss-American tandem played tag team throughout the opening bike leg, maintaining their lead while a race for third happened behind them. Coldwell teamed up with Kirsten Kasper to leave the rest of the field, but once the race entered the water the athletes bunched up again while Zaferes and Spirig stayed clear.

Out onto the run, Zaferes began stretching her legs and her lead to Spirig, who was never able to reclaim the front. The former collegiate track star made the final few hundred meters of the run look easy, celebrating into the finish chute.

Katie Zaferes and Nicola Spirig riding hard. Photo: Googsi Creative / The Studio M

“When I first got on the bike I was a little off technically with the corners, but I got more comfortable and moved up and was happy with how the race progressed as it got on,” Zaferes said. “The swim feels as horrible as all the boys told us it did, so at least I was prepared for that and didn’t panic. I felt nervous especially after having raced last weekend, but I felt good. I really hope to approach tomorrow just like I did today and hope the same result comes away from it, but Day 2 gets significantly harder. I’ll go for it for sure though.”

It has been only a few months since Spirig gave birth to her second child, but today’s race showed she is still one of the most fearsome athletes to contend with on any starting line. She said, “Thank you very much for all the support from all of you. It has been great being here. I was just, it was amazing, I had good fun and I hope I’m a bit of an inspiration for all moms.”

Meanwhile, Cook used her stellar run to take herself into third place overall, the youngest on the Triple Mix podium. She said, “I’m feeling really good about today, I wasn’t sure about what to expect coming in; I felt like it could go either way. I was really proud of myself to just go out there and compete, not be afraid to put myself close to the front and just race my hardest. I haven’t really thought about tactics going into tomorrow yet. I’m kind of just trying to stay in the moment today and focus on what I needed to do. I guess I’ll have some thinking about a strategy to do tonight.”

There is one more day of racing to go to claim the first Super League Triathlon women’s trophy. These athletes will have to give it their all to stay on top. The Eliminator awaits, and only the fastest will survive.

Jodie Stimpson, Sophie Coldwell, and Rachel Klamer run as a chase group. Photo: Googsi Creative / The Studio M

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Super League: Kristian Blummenfelt takes out the Triple Mix on Day 1

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Kristian Blummenfelt of Norway blasted away in the final half-kilometer to finish the overall winner for today’s Triple Mix at Super League Jersey after staying out in front all day with South Africa’s Richard Murray and British crowd favorite and dual Olympic medalist Jonathan Brownlee.

Triple Mix is a three-stage race with a 10-minute break between stages and a pursuit-style start in Stages 2 and 3.

Stage 1: Swim-Bike-Run

While Jake Birtwhistle received pole position on the pontoon at yesterday’s slot draw and led out of the 300-meter swim that kicked off Stage 1, Brownlee was right on his shoulder and got the jump out of transition onto the 5-kilometer bike leg. After five laps over the flat yet technical YESSS Power bike course going over cobblestones and through tight dead turns, the Australian contingent of Birtwhistle, Matt Hauser, and Aaron Royle took the lead. It was on the run where Brownlee, Blummenfelt, and Murray asserted the dominance that would mark the rest of the race regardless of what order swimming, biking, and running would take.

Pontoon start of Triple Mix Stage 1 of the Super League triathlon in Jersey. Photo: Googsi Creative / The Studio M

Blummenfelt finished the two-kilometer run in first, with Murray and Brownlee in close pursuit. Olympic Bronze medalist Henri Schoeman came in a distant fourth as the rest of the field splintered into smaller chase groups.

Stage 2: Run-Bike-Swim

After a 10-minute break, the pursuit-based start for Stage 2 sent the top three off on the run with an 11-second lead. In the hands of these fleet-footed athletes those 10 seconds quickly ballooned to call into play the 90-second elimination rule. With a time gap of greater than 90 seconds to the leader, Ben Shaw was eliminated unceremoniously, as were Dan Halksworth, Crisanto Grajales Valencia, and Joao Pereira.

After a 10-minute break, the pursuit-based start for Stage 2 sent the top three off on the run with an 11-second lead. In the hands of these fleet-footed athletes those 10 seconds quickly ballooned to call into play the 90-second elimination rule. With a time gap of greater than 90 seconds to the leader, Ben Shaw was eliminated unceremoniously, as were Dan Halksworth, Crisanto Grajales Valencia, and Joao Pereira.

Jonathan Brownlee on the run. Photo: Googsi Creative / The Studio M

Once on their bikes, Blummenfelt, Murray, and Brownlee worked together to grow a monstrous lead with clear road behind them. Still joined at the hip by the time they jumped back into the water, Brownlee surged ahead by a few strokes leaving Murray to chase him through the finish chute. Schoeman kept fourth place with a great swim after slipping backwards in the bike pack, while reigning world champion Mario Mola crept up into sixth.

Stage 3: Bike-Swim-Run

The final stage of Triple Mix started with the bike leg. With the big three once again out in front, the stage saw a few more eliminated by the 90-second rule including pre-race swim favorite Richard Varga and world number five Fernando Alarza. Ben Dijkstra crashed out on the bike leg, leaving British hopes entirely in the capable hands of Brownlee.

Once into the swim, the three men played tactical, holding positions with Brownlee out in front, Murray sitting on his feet, and Blummenfelt just a little further back. The race would be decided on the run.

It was Blummenfelt who had a bit more gas in the tank as he and Murray dueled through the run leg; ultimately, the Norwegian sprinted ahead for the day’s win. Their race-within-a-race relegated Brownlee to third place, while Schoeman held strong in fourth.

The peloton rides past during the bike leg of the Triple Mix on Day 1 of Super League in Jersey. Photo: Googsi Creative / The Studio M

“It feels so good. Especially Murray he’s really strong on the run so I wasn’t really sure of a way to get him but super pleased. I think the fact that we started the next stage with a gap played a huge role. We went hard in the beginning and kept going and worked well together,” said Blummenfelt, who is third in the year-end world rankings. “My plan was actually to stay a little bit more calm in the first stage but it’s too hard with this many people around cheering you on. I didn’t plan to go that hard in the beginning but seems the day played out well.”

Brownlee, a first-time racer in the Super League Triathlon formats, had a bit of adjusting to do. He said, “I took out the start in the first swim and it was full on and we had to keep going. And then I made a mistake there towards the end and it cost me the race… I’m really tired but I’ve got to do it all again tomorrow. I had the advantage of a home crowd, and it’s great to see lots of Jersey people around supporting me, so thank you.”

Defending champion Murray did not lack in taking his chances on the day. “I realized it was a four-kilometer run on the trot and I decided that was the moment to try and go for it today. Luckily I had these two men next to me to come with and it was definitely a really hard day. It was my first breakaway ever and the crowd was amazing and it’s very hard to be in a breakaway so kudos to the guys who do it every race,” he said. “Blummenfelt managed to get the better of me today but it was great from these two guys.”

Blummenfelt now sits atop the point standings with 25 points. Murray is four points behind at 21, while Brownlee has gained 18. This gives them plenty of wiggle room to take out the overall win tomorrow after the Eliminator, but as today’s race has showed, you need to race every stage like you want to win it.

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Wahoo Fitness Announces Partnership with Superstar Jan Frodeno

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Wahoo bolsters its elite athlete program with the addition of two-time Ironman World Champion and Olympic gold medalist Jan Frodeno

Wahoo Fitness, the leader in workout apps and connected fitness devices, has just announced an official partnership with Olympic champion and two-time Ironman World Champion Jan Frodeno. Given the unique, multi-sport training requirements of triathlon, the Wahoo product ecosystem is perfectly tailored to maximize efforts and enhance the performance of all triathletes, including those competing at the world’s most elite levels, like Frodeno.

As an official partner, Wahoo’s complete ecosystem of innovative products will be supporting Frodeno’s training efforts. This includes the dual-band TICKR X Heart Rate Monitor, the powerful and aerodynamic ELEMNT BOLT GPS cycling computer, and Wahoo’s acclaimed indoor stationary smart bike trainer; the KICKR, whose signature flywheel technology replicates the smooth feel of the road. Rounding out the Wahoo ecosystem is the groundbreaking new KICKR CLIMB, a grade simulator which enables Frodeno to replicate the resistance and grade changes found on the profiles of real-world TT courses, providing a competitive edge unmatched by any other indoor trainer.

Frodeno, like other Wahoo athletes including Tour de France-winning Team Sky, will play a key role by providing direct input into the design and development of future Wahoo products ensuring they are tailored to meet the needs of the most demanding professional athletes. This valuable insight will help ensure Wahoo products continue to remain best-in-class for triathletes with the highest performance standards.

“I’ve always considered myself a Wahooligan, as I’ve been using Wahoo products to support my training efforts for many years, but now I’m happy to say it’s official,” says Wahoo’s newest athlete Jan Frodeno. “It’s very important to me that the brand cares about delivering a seamless user experience between each of its products – and Wahoo’s full ecosystem suits my training needs perfectly, enabling me to train with greater efficiency than ever before,” continues Frodeno.

“We’re extremely proud to introduce such an incredible athlete to the ‘Wahooligan’ family,” says Chip Hawkins, Wahoo Fitness CEO. “It’s long been Wahoo’s mission to support the performance of athletes at all levels, and our product ecosystem is uniquely positioned to provide a truly comprehensive, connected training experience for discerning weekend warriors and elite triathletes like Frodeno who demand nothing but the absolute best.”

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First-ever Super League Triathlon Corporate Mix draws competitive local teams

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The first-ever Super League Triathlon Corporate Mix commenced this morning in Jersey with Team Comprop finishing out front, followed by the Ravenscroft Titans and First Names Group Team 2 in second and third place in a thrilling sprint finish. With 17 teams from nine different corporate entities competing, the Corporate Mix has allowed the local community and businesses to be part of what has become one of Jersey’s biggest sporting events. Local teams were in fact among the most competitive, with the top six fastest teams coming from the Channel Islands.

Comprop is a leading privately owned property developer of both commercial and residential sites in Jersey and Guernsey. Its corporate mix team is composed of some of Jersey’s most dedicated athletes including pro coach Nick Saunders and full-time triathlete Ollie Turner.

After assessing the course and the safety needs of what were largely age-group participants, race officials decided to change the Corporate Mix run course to follow the pier, instead of taking place on the same section of road as the bike course since not all cyclists would be off the course by the time the first runners would start.

Officials also implemented the Sprint Pursuit format instead of the planned Enduro (nonstop swim-bike-run-swim-bike-run). The Sprint Pursuit involved two stages of swim-bike-run with ten minutes of rest between stages. At the start of the second stage, swimmers were released by the previous stage’s finish order as well as the time gaps between their team finishes.

Though out for the rest of the season due to hip surgery, Alistair Brownlee found a way to be a part of Super League Jersey, pinch-hitting as a swimmer for the MaccaNOW Foundation team. It was one very special highlight not just for the Corporate Mix competitors to swim alongside the dual Olympic gold medalist, but also for the Jersey locals who thronged the barricades to join the festivities and spectate.

While Team Comprop currently rules the leaderboard, the corporate teams’ final standing today will be determined by how their sponsored championship athletes perform in the men’s and women’s races happening later.

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Navy SEAL Foundation to Receive $34,000 Donation from The Ironman Foundation

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The Ironman Foundation will provide a $34,000 donation to the Navy SEAL Foundation in conjunction with the IRONMAN 70.3 SUPERFROG triathlon taking place on Sunday, September 24 in Imperial Beach, California, bringing the total awarded to $174,000. In addition, The IRONMAN Foundation will distribute $15,500 in charitable giveback to non-profit initiatives and groups in the Imperial Beach region, including the Optimists Club of Coronado and the Islander Sports Foundation.

The original and longest running half-distance race, the SUPERFROG Triathlon was founded in 1979. The challenging course was designed by a group of Navy SEALs stationed at the US Navy SEALs center in Coronado to both prepare them for the IRONMAN World Championship in Kailua-Kona, Hawai’i and to enhance their training.

“Today’s world is a safer place thanks in large part to our U.S. Navy SEALs and the Naval Special Warfare (NSW) community, but not without a significant sacrifice from those warriors, support personnel, and their families. Our job at the Navy SEAL Foundation is to support this amazing community, and we could not do it without the generosity of the IRONMAN Foundation and the participants of this event. Thank you to everyone who has participated in the historic IRONMAN 70.3 SUPERFROG triathlon,” said Sara Berry, Director of Marketing and Communication at the Navy SEAL Foundation.

The Navy SEAL Foundation provides immediate and ongoing support and assistance to the NSW community, their families, and the families of the fallen, wounded and also transitioning NSW veterans. U.S. Navy SEALs have been in sustained combat for over 16 years, performing hazardous work in unforgiving environments at an unrelenting pace. SEALs can spend up to 270 days each year away from their families. The Navy SEAL Foundation stands behind these warriors and their families by delivering comprehensive, world-class programs that specifically address the community’s unique needs.

“Navy SEALs are the elite warriors who put their lives on the line every single day, taking on some of the most perilous missions to protect our country,” said Sarah Hartmann, Community Relations Manager for The IRONMAN Foundation. “It’s important for us to do our part to support those in the field and their families at home. The IRONMAN Foundation is honored to support the Navy SEAL Foundation and our other local nonprofit partners to create long-lasting and tangible impact.”

IRONMAN Foundation race entries were made available to athletes participating in the event, with $175 from each of those entries serving as a tax-deductible donation towards The IRONMAN Foundation Community Fund. The IRONMAN Foundation Community Fund provides community and volunteerism grant opportunities to non-profit organizations where IRONMAN events are held. In 2017, The IRONMAN Foundation will distribute more than $1.5 million in grant funding to support the needs of IRONMAN race communities across North America.

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Super League: When and How to Watch This Weekend’s Racing in Jersey

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With only one day to go before Super League Jersey kicks off on 23-24 September 2017, live television broadcast and digital streaming will take the revolution of triathlon into the living rooms and personal devices of millions of triathlon and sports fans around the world.

Both men’s and women’s pro races will be aired as it happens, taking viewers up close to non-stop action, superstars and dark horses to root for, and pulse-pounding finishes where the athletes lay it all on the line in an exotic and iconic locale.

Super League Triathlon offers incredible TV and digital content output with our live race day television broadcasts, live race day digital streaming, and Video on Demand content in partnership with Lagardère Sports.

Here’s how to watch Super League Jersey wherever you are in the world.

If you are lazy like me, here’s a link for all your timezones for each event.

Men’s Triple Mix (day 1) | Women’s Triple Mix (day 1)

Men’s Eliminator (day 2) | Women’s Eliminator (day 2)

ONLINE STREAMING

International

The Live shows will stream on www.superleaguetriathlon.com and www.youtube.com/superleaguetriathlon. If you miss the live stream, you can catch up on our Youtube channel.

Date Time (GMT+1) Format
Saturday, 23 September 1300 Triple Mix (Men)
1600 Triple Mix (Women)
Sunday, 24 September 1300 Eliminator (Women)
1600 Eliminator (Men)

Europe & UK

Each day’s episode will be available On Demand on Eurosport Player.

Date Available on (CET) Format
Saturday, 23 September 1400 onwards Triple Mix (Men)
1700 onwards Triple Mix (Women)
Sunday, 24 September 1400 onwards Eliminator (Women)
1700 onwards Eliminator (Men)

Germany

Sportdeutschland.TV will carry each day’s broadcast as a livestream on their website.

Date Time (CET) Format
Saturday, 23 September 1400 Triple Mix (Men)
1700 Triple Mix (Women)
Sunday, 24 September 1400 Eliminator (Women)
1700 Eliminator (Men)

China

Lesports is China’s top digital sports destination and will carry Super League Jersey live programming as a stream on its website.

Date Time (GMT+8) Format
Saturday, 23 September 2000 Triple Mix (Men)
2300 Triple Mix (Women)
Sunday, 24 September 2000 Eliminator (Women)
2300 Eliminator (Men)

TELEVISION

Catch the action on television through the following providers in their corresponding regions.

France

L’Equipe will broadcast Super League Jersey live programming in France.

Date Time (CET) Format
Saturday, 23 September 1400 Triple Mix (Men)
1700 Triple Mix (Women)
Sunday, 24 September 1400 Eliminator (Women)
1700 Eliminator (Men)

Russia

Super League Jersey will air on Russian public sports channel Match TV.

Date Time (GMT+3) Format
Saturday, 23 September 1500 Triple Mix (Men)
1800 Triple Mix (Women)
Sunday, 24 September 1500 Eliminator (Women)
1800 Eliminator (Men)

China, Hong Kong, Japan

Beijing Media Network will broadcast Super League Jersey live in China, Hong Kong, and Japan. Please consult local listings for channel particulars.

Date Time (GMT+8) Format
Saturday, 23 September 2000 Triple Mix (Men)
2300 Triple Mix (Women)
Sunday, 24 September 2000 Eliminator (Women)
2300 Eliminator (Men)

Philippines

Super League Jersey will be broadcast on free-to-air TV channel Aksyon TV (UHF 41).

Date Time (GMT+8) Format
Saturday, 23 September 2000 Triple Mix (Men)
2300 Triple Mix (Women)
Sunday, 24 September 2000 Eliminator (Women)
2300 Eliminator (Men)

Australia

Fox Sports Australia will air live broadcasts from Jersey. Please consult local listings for channel particulars.

Date Time (AEST*) Format
Saturday, 23 September 2300 Triple Mix (Men)
Sunday, 24 September 0200 Triple Mix (Women)
2300 Eliminator (Women)
Monday, 25 September 0200 Eliminator (Men)

* Australian Eastern Standard Time

New Zealand

Sky New Zealand has exclusive airing rights for Super League Triathlon. Catch the live broadcasts over race weekend. Please consult local listings for channel particulars.

Date Time (NZST*) Format
Sunday, 24 September 0100 Triple Mix (Men)
0400 Triple Mix (Women)
Monday, 25 September 0100 Eliminator (Women)
0400 Eliminator (Men)

*New Zealand Standard Time

USA/Canada

Super League Jersey will be broadcast live on ESPN3.

Date Time (MST*) Format
Friday, 22 September 0600 Triple Mix (Men)
0900 Triple Mix (Women)
Saturday, 23 September 0600 Eliminator (Women)
0900 Eliminator (Men)

*Mountain Standard Time

Middle East and North Africa

OSN has acquired the rights to broadcast Super League Jersey across the Middle East and North Africa.  Please consult local listings for channel particulars.

Date Time (GMT+3) Format
Saturday, 23 September 1500 Triple Mix (Men)
1800 Triple Mix (Women)
Sunday, 24 September 1500 Eliminator (Women)
1800 Eliminator (Men)

Sub-Saharan Africa

Super League Jersey will air live on Supersport. Please consult local listings for channel particulars.

Date Time (GMT+2) Format
Saturday, 23 September 1400 Triple Mix (Men)
1700 Triple Mix (Women)
Sunday, 24 September 1400 Eliminator (Women)
1700 Eliminator (Men)

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