What we learned from WTS Hamburg
The races in Hamburg may have been sprints, but there was no lack of action from either the World Triathlon Series races or the Mixed Relay World Championships. With just two WTS races left, here's a look back at what we learned in Hamburg
1. Added discipline demanded for Mixed RelayWhile the constant lead changes kept everyone on the edge of their seat, perhaps the most talked about part of the race had very little to do with swimming, biking or running. Rather, some of the triathletes may have lucrative careers in diving. After tagging off to their teammates, athletes bolted down a ramp into to launch themselves as far as they could into the lake. And launch with form they did. As what fan commented, "They look like penguins in lycra." If you haven't seen what we are talking about, watch the highlights here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U0WnBLS1Ftk&feature=youtu.be …
2. Gwen Jorgensen’s got kick
She might not have made it to the podium, but the gal’s got kick. After missing the lead pack out of the water and bike, Jorgensen pulled herself up from the bottom half into sixth place with a wildly impressive run. Her split of 15:31 was the fastest of the day for the ladies by 34 second and bested almost half the men’s field. Smoking.
3. The Brownlee brothers vs Javier Gomez
It’s a story that’s been told time and again, but the ending constantly changes. While Jonathan Brownlee took his turn at the top instead of big brother Alistair, this week was evidence yet again that when you put these three together, none of them go down without a fight. As part of the group got away on the bike in the men’s race, the Brownlees and Gomez went to work on the run to retain their titles as triathlon kings. Nothing short of impressive when you put this trio together.
4. Expect the unexpected
The athletes really kicked it up a notch in Hamburg in the Mixed Relay World Championships. First Great Britain led, then it was the Americnas, back to the Brits, changeover to the Germans, USA back on top, come from behind last-minute push from the Kiwis but a final kick from the home team gave Germany a win in front a noisy, ecstatic crowd. It was exhilarating and that is what #TeamTriathlon is all about. What else did we learn? You all love it as much as we do.
- 5. There’s no place like home
We saw it in the women’s race and again in the Mixed Relay World Championships. When you have 300,000 screaming German fans, prepare for their athletes to fly into overdrive. On Saturday, all bets were off as Non Stanford, Anne Haug and Jodie Stimpson each barreled for the podium. All the girls have been known to power through in a clutch and with all of them together, guessing who would win was no easy feat. But it was Haug who hammered for home first in front of a roaring crowd to win the race and maintain her top spot on the leaderboard.
Similarly, on Sunday the reigning Mixed Relay World Champions were expected to feature again with a dream team of Stimpson, Alistair Brownlee, Stanford and Jonathan Brownlee starting for the Brits. But an unexpected crash took GBR out of the race. And while the Americans had a solid lead, we learned just how powerful a home crowd can be when the anchor to the men’s German team sailed past the Americans on the final run to clinch their first Mixed Relay title.
6. All about the beerWinning is great and personal bests are wonderful. But let’s be honest. Is there really anything more rewarding than that nice, chilled beer after a good hard race? Only showering your friends with it, of course.
7. Early bird gets the best seatWhen there are 300,000 spectators to contend with, best not to leave it up to chance. In Hamburg, you’ve got to stake out your seat early on if you want a chance to see the action. And as this competitor advised, if you want to feel like a rockstar, we suggest signing up for next year’s race.
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