Alistair and Jonny Brownlee, Javier Gomez, Jodie Stimpson and Gwen Jorgensen are just some of the top athletes looking to rack up Olympic qualification points at WTS Yokohama this Saturday (17 May).
After sitting out Auckland and Cape Town this year, Alistair Brownlee will be keen to pick up his first WTS points of 2014 – and having won 15 of his last 20 WTS encounters with reigning champion Javier Gomez (ESP), must fancy his chances. Younger brother Jonathan will also be feeling confident, given that he shrugged off the rain and mud in Yokohama last year to pick up gold.
Other men to watch include Portugal’s João Silva, who’s medalled three times in the Japanese city (winning in 2011 and 2012), as well as up-and-coming threats like Mario Mola (ESP), Aaron Royle (AUS) and Richard Murray (RSA).
Speaking at the pre-race press conference, Jonathan said: “After Cape Town and Auckland you can’t change too much before here, all I have done is go home and try and get a little faster. Having Alistair here will maybe help a little, especially on the bike. Javier was fast in Auckland and Cape Town and all I can do is try to beat him here.”
The women’s race is likely to be dominated by the same three women who picked up medals last year: last year’s winner Gwen Jorgensen (USA), Australia’s Emma Moffat and current WTS points leader Jodie Stimpson (GBR). Two other major British threats won’t be racing however – reigning champ Non Stanford and Helen Jenkins.
“Last year I was in a sprint finish with Emma [Moffatt] but I hope for no more sprint finishes this year,” said Jodie at the pre-race press conference. “My training is going well, I have been in South Africa after the Cape Town race and I am looking forward to putting together a good performance here again on Saturday.”
The elite women’s race will get underway in Yokohama at 10am local time (2am UK time) on Saturday 17 May, and the elite men will start racing at 1pm (5am UK time).
All the action can be watched live on the BBC’s Red Button service, or online at triathlonlive.tv
(Main image: Delly Carr)