It’s good to see some races back on the calendar and exciting to see what great battles we can expect. Gran Canaria is getting ready to host some of the best triathletes in the world at this weekend’s Challenge Mogan-Gran Canaria. Among others Jan Frodeno (GER), Patrick Lange (GER), Pieter Heemeryck (BEL), Nicola Spirig (SWI) and Lisa Norden (SWE) are on the start list, so it promises to be a tough race.
With Frodeno’s performance during Challenge Miami still fresh on our mind, he’s considered the race favorite. However, he can count on some fierce competition with another former Ironman World Championship winner on the start list: Patrick Lange. It’s been a while since we last got to see Lange race, but we can be sure he will do all he can to try and claim the title. After a self-admittedly disappointing race at Challenge Daytona, Heemeryck will likely aim to set the record straight. Local favorite Pablo Dapena Gonzalez (ESP) will be a candidate for a podium spot too. Other strong athletes on the start list include: Andi Boecherer (GER), Thomas Davis (GBR), Joao Ferreira (POR), Ivan Rana (ESP), Nick Kastelein (AUS) and Nils Frommhold (GER).
In the women’s race all eyes will be on Nicola Spirig, one of the women who aims to go sub-8 for over a full-distance race next year. It will be exciting to see whether she and Norden can battle again as they did during the Olympics in 2012. In a photo-finish Spirig who took gold back then. Local favorite Sara Pérez Sala – who proved to be in great shape during the swim and bike at Challenge Miami, where she eventually finished 4th – will likely mingle with these top athletes to try and go after a podium spot.
Some other strong women that will toe the line on Saturday are Katrina Matthews (GBR), Maja Stage-Nielsen (DNK) and Sarissa de Vries (NLD).