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Kretz takes sixth at Miyazaki ITU World Cup

Amelie Kretz earns valuable Olympic qualifying points in Japan as local hero Ai Ueda defends her title and American Matthew McElroy takes the men's race.

Canada’s Amelie Kretz runs with 2012 Olympic gold medalist (and 2016 silver medalist) Nicola Spirig (SUI) and Belgium’s Valerie Barthelemy at the Miyazaki ITU Triathlon World Cup.

Amelie Kretz’s sixth-place finish at the ITU Miyazaki ITU Triathlon World Cup was the highlight of the Canadian performances as the 2016 Olympian continued her run for the 2020 games by earning valuable qualifying points. The standard-distance race consisted of a 1.5 km swim, a 40 km bike and a 10 km run.

Other Canadians in the field included Matthew Sharpe, who finished 14th, Elisabeth Boutin, 32nd, Emy Legault, 38th and Aiden Longcroft-Harris, who was 41st.

Ai Ueda defended her title, giving Japan a second-straight home-country win in Miyazaki. Second and third went to Belgium’s Claire Michel and Valerie Barthelemy.

The men’s race was won by American Matthew McElroy, who finished ahead of countryman Eli Hemming and Belgium’s Jelle Geens.

Elite women’s results

Elite men’s results

Here’s a gallery from this weekend’s race with lots of shots of our Canadian crew in action:

Elisabeth Boutin (left) and Emi Legault hit the water.
Amelie Kretz works hard in the chase group …
Eventually the chase group caught the leaders …
Emy Legault pushes hard on the bike.
Matt Sharpe hits T2 as part of the lead group …
Kretz found herself part of the group that was chasing race-leader Ai Ueda that included Olympic gold and silver medalist, Nicola Spirig.
Matthew Sharpe wasn’t able to stay with the leaders through the run, but gamely hung on in the hunt for a top-10 finish.
Kretz hung tough through the run – Barthelemy, in blue, would eventually finish third, Spirig would take fourth.
Elisabeth Boutin tries to stay cool in the hot and humid conditions.
Ai Ueda successfully defends her title.
A big with for Matthew McElroy.
Hemming, McElroy and Geens are all smiles on the podium …
As are Michel, Ueda and Barthelemy.