World titles up for grabs in Samorin: Long Distance Championships race preview

(Archive photo: PTO)

It might be a distance that’s closer to a Middle Distance than a Long Distance, but on Sunday – a day later than the Collins Cup – athletes will give it their all to try to win the World Title at the World Triathlon Long Distance Championships in Samorin. Athletes will race over a distance of 2000 meters of swimming, 80 km of cycling and 18 km of running. Let’s have a look at the start lists.

In the women’s race all eyes will be on Lucy Charles, even though we can’t expect too much from the British star athlete, given the fact that she just came back from a heavy injury that kept her from training for quite some months. In Samorin Charles wants to see where things are at, make her comeback and roll into the rhythm of racing again. She can expect some fierce competition from fellow Britt, Emma Pallant-Browne, who was “gutted” to not be qualified for Saturday’s Collins Cup, but will likely use that anger to hit the gas one day later on the same course. Some “outsiders” to watch in the women’s race are Sweden’s Lisa Norden, who even stands a good chance of claiming a medal, and Brazil’s Luisa Baptista.

In the men’s race, we can expect great things from the German duo Frederic Funk and Florian Angert. At the PTO Canadian open, Funk pulled off a great performance, while Angert delivered a strong race at the Ironman World Championship in St. George; both ended up finishing in 5th place at these events. It’s not only the Germans that we will likely see in the front of the race, though. Also, the names of France’s Pierre Le Corre, Spain’s Pablo Dapena Gonzalez and Austria’s Thomas Steger don’t go unnoticed. A dark horse to many might be South-Africa’s Jamie Riddle. Riddle is a good swimmer, so he’s expected to be in the front of the field after that first discipline; additionally, he’s been showing off some strong bike legs during the past few Short Distances that he has raced. The only difference? There is no drafting this weekend, and he will therefor need to ride a TT-bike.

Check out the full start list here.