Hamburg will mark the halfway point in the 2011 Dextro Energy Triathlon ITU World Championship Series and right on time, the battle for the top of the series leaderboard is about to get interesting.
With neither current men’s or women’s leader Alistair Brownlee or Paula Findlay racing in the German round, it’s a perfect opportunity for others to stake their claim and possibly take the lead in the series. Among them will be Javier Gomez, Alexander Brukhankov, Barbara Riveros Diaz and Andrea Hewitt – all of whom have the best chance of walking away from Hamburg with the lead.
About the race: Hamburg has hosted a World Cup event since 2002, and the ITU World Championships in 2007, before coming on board as in the first year of the Dextro Energy Triathlon Series in 2009. The entire centre of the city shuts down for triathlon weekend as 10,000 age-group athletes race on the same venue as the elites, diving into the River Alster before biking and running through the heart of the city. Hamburg is always an athlete and fan favourite, as crowds turn out in thousands to create an amazing atmosphere. It’s the second largest city in Germany, behind Berlin, with a population of 1.8-million.
Elite Men – Saturday, July 16 – 2:00 pm (UTC/GMT +2)
Elite Women – Sunday, July 17 – 3:20 pm (UTC/GMT +2)
CANADIANS ON THE START LINE
Victoria’s Kyle Jones is back in the World Championship Series after wins on the Continental Cup circuit, and a fourth last weekend at the Edmonton World Cup.
38 Kyle Jones
44 Brent McMahon
49 Andrew Russell
54 Kirsten Sweetland
Live video coverage from Hamburg will be available on race day at triathlonlive.tv
Or follow @triathlonlive on Twitter for text updates on race day.
TOTAL PRIZE MONEY:
$150,000 USD (equal for men & women)
Swim – Two-lap, 1.5km swim from a pontoon start into an artificial lake within the city limits of Hamburg.
Bike – Eight-lap, 40km mostly, flat technical bike course that includes eight sharp turns in downtown Hamburg. Generally flat profile with no noteworthy climbs.
Run – Four-lap, 10km run on a flat course, with two 180 degree turns per lap.
STORIES TO WATCH FOR:
Team Germany at home – Reigning Olympic champion Jan Frodeno calls Hamburg home and he’s come extremely close to taking the title twice. In 2008, when Hamburg was a World Cup event he finished behind Daniel Unger (GER), before again claiming silver last year behind Javier Gomez. Frodeno had an ordinary start to the 2011 Dextro Energy Triathlon Series season in Sydney, but finished sixth in Madrid and no doubt Hamburg is one title he’d like to have on his resume. The other Germans in the field are Maik Petzold, Gregor Buchholz, Jonathan Zipf, Sebastian Rank, Christian Prochnow and Unger, who also won the 2007 world title on this course. In the women’s field, Germany also have a new talent to cheer on, Svenja Bazlen, who is having a breakthrough year.
New women’s winner – One thing is for certain, Paula Findlay won’t win every Dextro Energy Triathlon Series race this year, because she is not on the start list for Hamburg. So without Findlay and Helen Jenkins in the field, there are plenty of well-credentialed women with a chance to win. Out of those, only Barbara Riveros Diaz and Andrea Hewitt are close enough in point terms to overtake Findlay and that will surely offer both of them extra motivation. But there is a crop of in-form women looking for more podium places, including Bazlen, newly-crowned European Champion Emmie Charayron, the first American woman to make it to a world series podium – Sarah Groff, and the reigning World Champion who finished fourth in Kitzbühel, Emma Moffatt. But it’s also hard to discount athletes who – while are not in form – are still probably capable of pulling off a win, Emma Snowsill and Nicola Spirig. Snowsill didn’t have a great race in Sydney or Madrid and will be keen to get some points on the board in 2011. Meanwhile it’s Spirig’s first race for the year as the reigning World Championships silver medallist has been out with stress fractures.
Macca’s second race back – The buzz around Chris McCormack’s return certainly had everyone talking about Kitzbühel but the 38-year old had a fairly anti-climatic return. In freezing conditions on the sidelines, McCormack was behind from the swim and after dropping time on the bike, pulled out on the fourth lap. Since Austria, he’s been in camp with the Australian team and going off his prolific tweeting, has quite enjoyed getting back into the training for the Hamburg race.
PAST HAMBURG RESULTS
2010 Dextro Energy Triathlon ITU World Championship Hamburg
Lisa Norden (SWE) Javier Gomez (ESP)
2009 Dextro Energy Triathlon ITU World Championship Hamburg
Emma Moffatt (AUS) Jarrod Shoemaker (USA)
2008 Hamburg BG Triathlon World Cup
Ricarda Lisk (GER) Daniel Unger (GER)
2007 Hamburg BG Triathlon World Championships
Vanessa Fernandes (POR) Daniel Unger (GER)
2006 Hamburg BG Triathlon World Cup
Vanessa Fernandes (POR) Javier Gomez (ESP)
2005 Hamburg ITU Triathlon World Cup
Samantha Warriner (NZL) Filip Ospaly (CZE)
2004 Hamburg ITU Triathlon World Cup
Anja Dittmer (GER) Rasmus Henning (DEN)
2003 Hamburg ITU Triathon World Cup
Anja Dittmer (GER) Andrew Johns (GBR)
2002 Hamburg ITU Triathlon World Cup
Jill Savege (CAN) Greg Bennett (USA)