The 2014 World Triathlon Series arrives in Stockholm tomorrow for its final stopover before the Grand Final in Edmonton, Canada one week later – and there are some big names lining up on the pontoon for a chance to grab precious series points.
Four of Britain’s Commonwealth Games champions will be racing tomorrow – the Brownlee brothers, Jodie Stimpson and Lucy Hall – while the international pack includes reigning men’s champion Javier Gomez, his compatriot Mario Mola, Richard Murray (RSA) and Sarah Groff (USA) – but no Gwen Jorgensen, who is resting ahead of the final.
“The cobbles, tight corners and short, sharp inclines on the bike course in Stockholm make it a challenging course,” says last year’s winner Alastair Brownlee, adding that after winning gold in Glasgow last month he wants to “finish the season on a high now”.
Jonny Brownlee – who won in 2012 – is one of the few people who can catch series leader Gomez (3833 points), and currently sits in second place with 3337 points. With extra series points on offer at the Grand Final, both Jonny Brownlee and Mario Mola (3322 points) are in with a good chance of series victory if Gomez falters.
Meanwhile, in the women’s race, Alastair’s Commonwealths teammate Vicky Holland has withdrawn from Stockholm to rest her foot injury ahead of the Grand Final. It is Jodie Stimpson who arrives as top-ranked female with 2982 series points, behind recent Tri Liverpool winner Gwen Jorgensen who has 3885 points.
Stimpson’s likely rivals include Kirsten Sweetland (CAN), who took silver at this year’s Commonwealth Games behind winner Jodie Stimpson, while Maaike Caelers (NED) and Barbara Riveros (CHI) are no strangers to success in Stockholm, having earned silver and bronze there in 2012.
This year’s race will be a sprint distance (map here), with the athletes getting a pontoon start for a one-lap 750m swim, followed by a five-lap 20km bike that circles through the city’s Old Town, before finishing with a two-lap 5km run.
The men’s race will get underway at 11:46am UK time tomorrow (Saturday 23 August), and the women’s race will start at 1:51pm UK time the same day.
Live coverage is available on the BBC’s Red Button Service, and online via triathlonlive.tv.
(Main image: Janos Schmidt/ITU)
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