Over the three different series of this special Eliminator Format race, Britain’s Olivia Mathias could constantly be found somewhere in front. Therefor, it didn’t come as a complete surprise that she ended winning the final series, and thus claimed the gold at the Europe Triathlon Cup in Kitzbühel, Austria. She shared the podium with Germany’s Lena Meissner and Italy’s Angelica Prestia, who took second and third respectively.
Athletes who qualified during yesterday’s qualifier events, got to toe the line at the first of three short triathlons that took place today. Each triathlon consisted of a 250-meter swim, a 5.6K bike ride and a 1500-meter run. After the first series, the slowest ten athletes would be eliminated, leaving 20 athletes to start in the second series. Finally, another ten athletes would be left to race for the medals in the final series.
First two series
In the first two series, the athletes that managed to get to the front after the swim- and bike part mostly stayed together during the run. The first series were won by Germany’s Bianca Bogen, who out ran Italy’s Luis Logna-Prat and Italy’s Asia Mercatelli. In the second series Dutch Quinty Schoens, Germany’s Selina Klamt and Mathias took first, second, and third respectively.
In the final series, Mathias was – just like in the series before – first out of the water. She was just ahead of Klamt, Slovakia’s Zuzana Michalickova and Prestia. In the water, eight of the ten athletes managed to breakaway. That means two athletes lost touch here and had to work hard on the bike to try to get back to the front. Just before T2, they eventually bridged the gap. Meanwhile, Michalickova dared to take off on her own. She wasn’t able to stay ahead of the rest of the field until the run, though.
With ten athletes going into T2 simultaneously, everything came down to the 1500-meter run. Mathias didn’t feel like waiting until the final stretch to place an attack, and therefor she pushed the pace straight from the start. Meissner and Prestia were the only athletes that were able to follow her lead. For a few hundred meters, the three athletes ran alongside each other, until Mathias eventually sprinted towards the gold. After 18:15 minutes Mathias took the win, Meissner took second (+0:02) and Prestia completed the podium (+0:07).