The 2011 ITU Team Triathlon World Championships are quickly gaining momentum with only 100 days left until the competition kicks off in the Olympic city of Lausanne, Switzerland.
The rapidly growing discipline has secured entries from over 30 nations. Teams from every continent have registered interest for the competition, aiming to take the title away from Switzerland who has won the title for the past two years.
The International Triathlon Union (ITU) is hoping to get the discipline on the programme of the 2016 Rio Olympic Games, and the annual Team Triathlon World Championships are central to its strategic goal. The discipline’s Olympic ambitions are getting a boost with the event being broadcast live on TV for the first time.
The ITU’s current broadcast partners for the Dextro Energy Triathlon ITU World Championship Series will take coverage of the event. These partners include major public broadcasters such as BBC, ARD, ZDF, RAI, NHK, TVNZ, RTP, NTV, One, TVE and Universal.
In addition, the ITU is stepping up its digital campaign for the event, ensuring the discipline connects with the large youth segment now participating in triathlon. The team championships, like all the prime ITU races, will also be available to stream live and on-demand via its online channel: www.triathlonlive.tv. Last month, the ITU launched an iPhone app, in which users can get results, photos, athlete profiles and live updates from the event.
A hugely competitive field is expected in Lausanne, as the ITU Elite Sprint Triathlon World Championships (750m swim, 20km bike and 5km run) will be held the day before the team event. This race will carry points towards the Dextro Energy Triathlon ITU World Championship Series, and so the very best are expected to make the trip to Lausanne for the two-day race combination. This could make for some of the most exhilarating racing triathlon has seen with nations pitting their superstars against each other in one of the most exciting formats the sport has to offer.
The official format adopted for the ITU Team Triathlon World Championships is the 4 x Mixed Relay. Each team comprises of two men and two women. Each athlete completes a super-sprint triathlon of swimming, biking and running, before tagging off to their next team mate. The distances are a 275m swim, 6km bike, and 1.5km run. The order of the team members are fixed, with first and third team members being women and the second and fourth are the men. Each nation is free to decide the make-up of its team.