The dates are confirmed – triathlon’s test events for the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympic and Paralympic Games will be held on 1-2 August next year, with qualification points up for grabs and huge crowds expected.
The routes will take athletes along Copacabana beach on the restaurant-lined Avenida Atlantica, with the Olympic course also climbing through local neighbourhoods – along the same route as the real thing in 2016.
The 2015 Rio de Janeiro ITU World Olympic Qualification Event will feature a start list of 75 men and women, and will offer the maximum level of Olympic qualification points available, putting it on par with the World Triathlon Series Grand Final. Neither prize money nor ITU World Cup or World Triathlon Series points will be available at the test event however.
Speaking to 220 this morning, top British athlete Jodie Stimpson said: “I had heard a few people talking about the possibility of a world cup test event being held in August and am really excited to be able to go over and race on the course that will be the next Olympic course. Next year for me is all about trying to get on the Olympic team so going to race the test event obviously will play a big part in that plan.”
2013 WTS champ Non Stanford added: “It’ll be great to finally race on the proposed 2016 Olympic course. It will more than likely stand as a selection race for TeamGB athletes too, so it will be a key event in our calendar. The course also looks really exciting; the bike is technical and hilly which is great news for us.”
The 2015 Rio de Janeiro ITU World Paratriathlon Event will mimic the Paralympic Games course, with a minimum of 60 athletes set to participate. Qualification criteria for the test event will match that of a World Paratriathlon Event, and points earned at the race will go towards both Paralympic Qualification and ITU World Paratriathon Rankings.