The highly anticipated inaugural PTO Asia, slated for 20th August in Singapore, is set to host an electrifying showcase of elite talent. Leading the charge for Australia will be its formidable trio of Ashleigh Gentle, Max Neumann and Aaron Royle. With a demanding swim-bike-run course and sweltering heat, PTO Asia will test some of the world’s best over the 100km distance.
After a dominant undefeated streak in the 100km PTO events last season, Ashleigh Gentle has endured two consecutive second-place finishes this year. She was outpaced by Germany’s Anne Haug at the PTO European Open in May, and then finished runner-up to American Taylor Knibb at the PTO US Open. But the tenacious Aussie champion will be hungry to reassert her supremacy in Singapore after these recent defeats. With her blistering run speed that saw her destroying fields last year, Gentle remains the woman to beat over this longer distance.
Max Neumann sent shockwaves through the field by defeating world number one Kristian Blummenfelt to claim a dramatic come-from-behind win at the PTO European Open. The unassuming Aussie demonstrated he has both the physical tools and tactical nous to conquer the Norwegian giants of the sport. Described as a "throwback Aussie", Neumann will arrive in Singapore brimming with confidence after this breakout performance. He will aim to once again perfectly execute his race strategy to secure another statement win.
Rounding out Australia's podium contenders is the rapidly improving Aaron Royle. Royle announced himself with a 3rd place at the PTO Canadian Open last year, and has since cemented himself as a consistent top 10 finisher on the PTO Tour. With his expanded endurance and strength over the 100km distance, Royle will be targeting a podium finish to cap off a successful PTO season.
The infamous Singapore heat and humidity will add another grueling dimension to the race, testing the athletes’ endurance and resilience. But the Aussie trio of Gentle, Neumann and Royle have proven they possess the talent and determination to overcome any conditions. PTO Asia could well provide the perfect stage for one of these champions to conquer the world’s best.