Cassandre Beaugrand takes gold at WTCS Leeds despite serving a nerve wracking penalty

(Photo: Triathlon Today)

A thrilling final part of the run at the World Triathlon Championship Series due to a penalty that Cassandre Beaugrand had to serve just before the finish line. The French athlete ended up celebrating her victory despite spending ten seconds in the penalty tent. She shared the podium with Britain’s Georgia Taylor-Brown and Britain’s Sophie Coldwell.

Beaugrand pulled off a strong swim, completing the 750 meters in 9:09 minutes. She was followed right away by Flora Duffy, Taylor Spivey, Brazil’s Vittoria Lopes and Coldwell. In the first meters of the bike part, a lead group of four took shape, with Beaugrand, Duffy, Spivey and Coldwell. However, it turned out Beaugrand was unable to stay with this small lead pack, as she dropped back to the chase group, counting approximately fifteen athletes.

Surprisingly, it wasn’t only Beaugrand who was unable to stay with the lead pack, also Duffy struggled, because in the second bike lap, the Olympic champion let go of Spivey and Coldwell. That saw Duffy ended up riding alone for quite a while.

Spivey and Coldwell continued to extend their lead to over 30 seconds. On the run, Taylor-Brown and Beaugrand started a tough hunt. Especially, Beaugrand showed to have some extra matches left to burn. She had to serve a 10-second penalty, though, which meant the French athlete needed to create quite a big lead in order to take the victory.

With about 2K to go, Beaugrand caught up with Coldwell. She took off strong and once she had to dive into the penalty tent, it turned out she had enough time left to take the victory. Taylor-Brown brought home the silver medal, and Coldwell settled for third place.